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Travel Waiver for Puerto Rico?, in light of the earthquake / aftershocks

Travel Waiver for Puerto Rico?, in light of the earthquake / aftershocks

Old Jan 22, 20, 9:01 am
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Travel Waiver for Puerto Rico?, in light of the earthquake / aftershocks

My wife is getting nervous about a trip to Puerto Rico, in light of the earthquakes. We are considering changing our dates. There's a $200 change fee. I looked to see whether United has a travel change waiver for PR, in light of the earthquakes (as Delta had). Does not appear there is one. Is it worthwhile for us to "call and beg" -- explaining the earthquake-related fear -- or is that hopeless in the absence of a waiver? Thanks.
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Old Jan 22, 20, 9:04 am
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Originally Posted by Chamor View Post
My wife is getting nervous about a trip to Puerto Rico, in light of the earthquakes. We are considering changing our dates. There's a $200 change fee. I looked to see whether United has a travel change waiver for PR, in light of the earthquakes (as Delta had). Does not appear there is one. Is it worthwhile for us to "call and beg" -- explaining the earthquake-related fear -- or is that hopeless in the absence of a waiver? Thanks.
Well, first of all, earthquakes are not related to weather. At all. Second, waivers are issued for known events that will directly affect operations, not hypothetical ones. A doctor's note might do you more good than just saying there's a fear.
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Old Jan 22, 20, 9:19 am
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Originally Posted by wxguy View Post
Well, first of all, earthquakes are not related to weather. At all. Second, waivers are issued for known events that will directly affect operations, not hypothetical ones. A doctor's note might do you more good than just saying there's a fear.
On your first point, the issue of a possible nexus between climate and earthquakes has been debated since the time Aristotle, in the 4th Century BCE, and the debate continues. So it is less clear-cut than you suggest. But I guess debating that is beyond the scope of FT; I suppose I could have referred to a "seismology waiver.". In terms of known versus hypothetical events, there have been earthquakes ("aftershocks") in Puerto Rico within the past couple of weeks -- every day -- that recently caused certain airlines to issue waivers. But in any event, UA does not have one in place. Hence, my question. The docs note might be a good idea, re anxiety... Thanks.
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Old Jan 22, 20, 9:45 am
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Originally Posted by Chamor View Post
On your first point, the issue of a possible nexus between climate and earthquakes has been debated since the time Aristotle, in the 4th Century BCE, and the debate continues. So it is less clear-cut than you suggest. But I guess debating that is beyond the scope of FT; I suppose I could have referred to a "seismology waiver.". In terms of known versus hypothetical events, there have been earthquakes ("aftershocks") in Puerto Rico within the past couple of weeks -- every day -- that recently caused certain airlines to issue waivers. But in any event, UA does not have one in place. Hence, my question. The docs note might be a good idea, re anxiety... Thanks.
I'm a geologist. The debate between weather and earthquakes indeed continues - in the same vein as the Flat Earth Society continues today. An bigger earthquake can happen today in California, Hawaii, New Zealand, Italy, Alaska, Chile, Japan, etc, etc, etc. Is UA to provide waivers to everywhere because an earthquake might happen? Aftershocks tend to be small and unnoticeable. Aftershocks occur most frequently within the 24 hours of the main quake and diminish in frequency and intensity thereafter.

Delta's waiver is probably not issued due to the potential of aftershocks, but due to the damage caused by the quake.

A doctor's note is the logical route to avoid the stress.
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Old Jan 22, 20, 9:53 am
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Your wife, not you, should call UA and simply ask. Saying, "I am afraid" is a lot more impactful than someone else saying that a third party is concerned.

Agents hear stories every day, so best to make this clean & simple and she will either find an agent willing to do this or not. She should have the new dates in hand so that this can all be handled as part of a single transaction.
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Old Jan 22, 20, 9:58 am
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Originally Posted by IAH-OIL-TRASH View Post
I'm a geologist. The debate between weather and earthquakes indeed continues - in the same vein as the Flat Earth Society continues today. An bigger earthquake can happen today in California, Hawaii, New Zealand, Italy, Alaska, Chile, Japan, etc, etc, etc. Is UA to provide waivers to everywhere because an earthquake might happen? Aftershocks tend to be small and unnoticeable. Aftershocks occur most frequently within the 24 hours of the main quake and diminish in frequency and intensity thereafter
.
As a practicing Druid I wholly support the Flat Earth Societies' stance on climate change and deny any linkage or correlation to geologic events.
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Old Jan 22, 20, 10:36 am
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Originally Posted by IAH-OIL-TRASH View Post
I'm a geologist. The debate between weather and earthquakes indeed continues - in the same vein as the Flat Earth Society continues today. An bigger earthquake can happen today in California, Hawaii, New Zealand, Italy, Alaska, Chile, Japan, etc, etc, etc. Is UA to provide waivers to everywhere because an earthquake might happen? Aftershocks tend to be small and unnoticeable. Aftershocks occur most frequently within the 24 hours of the main quake and diminish in frequency and intensity thereafter.

Delta's waiver is probably not issued due to the potential of aftershocks, but due to the damage caused by the quake.

A doctor's note is the logical route to avoid the stress.
Concur ^^. And I'm a certified meteorologist with 40 years' experience. Here's a NASA article on the subject. Back on subject to UA, if you can't get a doctor's note, a strategy could be to wait until 24 hours before flight to see if there's a weather wavier at your origin that will allow a change -- that's a lot more likely than a PR-based waiver (unless you're traveling during hurricane season when there could be one for PR).
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Old Jan 22, 20, 12:07 pm
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Originally Posted by wxguy View Post
Well, first of all, earthquakes are not related to weather. At all. Second, waivers are issued for known events that will directly affect operations, not hypothetical ones. A doctor's note might do you more good than just saying there's a fear.
Saturday Jan 11, after there was a 6.0 quake, I contacted UA, said I wasn’t comfortable traveling there and had an alternate destination ready —agent quickly rebooked me, collected difference in fare ($41), and completed the transaction in a friendly and efficient manner. I’d suggest doing the same-think anyone could relate to your wife’s feelings!
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Old Jan 22, 20, 12:10 pm
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If you are traveling to the San Juan area there is little impact to the earthquakes (other than potentially feeling slight motion) as they are not super close to the area where the earthquakes are centered. Your bigger concern if traveling to San Juan may be the impact on Old San Juan of the protests against the governor.
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Old Jan 23, 20, 7:01 pm
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Originally Posted by drgreg View Post
Saturday Jan 11, after there was a 6.0 quake, I contacted UA, said I wasn’t comfortable traveling there and had an alternate destination ready —agent quickly rebooked me, collected difference in fare ($41), and completed the transaction in a friendly and efficient manner. I’d suggest doing the same-think anyone could relate to your wife’s feelings!
I think this would have been the right approach for us. But I was not able to do it because the ticket was controlled by our former corporate travel agent (former = not willing to "waste time" doing us any favors). So I just paid the $200 change fee plus fare difference. The change fee was more than the fare difference.

So at this point my choices are (1) just accept the fact that I "wasted" $200 change fee, or (2) after the flight, email United Cares, and explain that we changed my wife's ticket because she had anxiety about flying into BQN given the earthquakes -- and we paid the fare difference plus a $200 change fee, and that while we accept that UA had the right to charge these amounts, we hoped UA might have compassion for my wife's earthquake anxiety and not impose (refund) the change fee.

Is option #2 a waste of time because it will never happen?
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Old Jan 24, 20, 8:54 am
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As my mother always taught us “it never hurts to ask”. You didn’t cancel with UA, but in fact bought a ticket with a higher fare, increasing revenue...I’d probably meekly state you like UA and wanted to stay within their route network, & so chose a different destination. Good luck
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