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Schedule Change(Back to 2hrs) / Cancelation Refund [Archive]

Old Nov 19, 2023, 7:37 pm
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Last edit by: WineCountryUA
This is UA's guidance to TA's (on Jetstream) on re-scheduling

Additional parameters for flights impacted by schedule changes for United-operated flights
  1. Non-stops may go to connecting flights, and connecting flights may go to non-stops
  2. Connecting hub may be changed
  3. If original day of departure is unavailable, may depart 7 days prior to or after original departure date. If outbound flight is impacted, subsequent flights on same itinerary may be changed to maintain original length of trip.***
  4. Alternate airports within a 250-mile radius of the original origin or departure airport***
    • Change may apply to origin and destination, but must be changed at the original time of ticket reissue
    • Customer is responsible for any additional expenses incurred
**United Basic Economy fares booked in "N" class must remain in "N" class when eligible for self-service rebooking due to unacceptable schedule changes or irregular operations. If "N" class is unavailable, please contact Uniteds Customer Contact Centers for assistance. Rebooking into an ineligible booking class may result in the issuance of a debit memo. For non-Basic Economy fares, do not rebook into "N" class.

***Continuing or return travel dates may be voluntarily changed on UA segments only in the original inventory class to maintain the original length of stay prior to the re-accommodation. Changes to the return flight must be in the same PNR and be made in the same transaction as the re-accommodation of the outbound flight. The change fee and add/collect will be waived for changes made to the return (original class of service only).



Unacceptable (UA): Misconnecting itinerary | Change to originally scheduled arrival or departure time of at least
+ / - 30 minutes
Options Change to alternate UA flight (same origin and destination and original operating carrier or carrier permitted as noted in fare rule)

Unacceptable (UA): Change to original arrival or departure time of 2 hours or more | Flight(s) canceled with no protection| Flight goes from non-stop to connection Options Change to alternate UA flight with same origin and destination and original operating carrier or carrier permitted as noted in fare rule, or travel agencies can refund through ARC, BSP, GDS.

Old snapshots of jetstream


Additional parameters for flights impacted by schedule changes
  1. Non-stops may go to connecting flights, and connecting flights may go to non-stops
  2. Connecting hub may be changed
  3. If original day of departure is unavailable, may depart 7 days prior to or after original departure date. If outbound flight is impacted, subsequent flights on same itinerary may be changed to maintain original length of trip.***
  4. Alternate airports within a 100 mile radius of the original origin or departure airport***
    • Change may apply to origin and destination, but must be changed at the original time of ticket reissue
    • Customer is responsible for any additional expenses incurred
Please see footnote below regarding the handling of United Basic Economy fares booked in "N" class.

***Continuing or return travel dates may be voluntarily changed on UA segments only in the original inventory class to maintain the original length of stay prior to the re-accommodation. Changes to the return flight must be in the same PNR and be made in the same transaction as the re-accommodation of the outbound flight. The change fee and add/collect will be waived for changes made to the return (original class of service only).

**United Basic Economy fares booked in "N" class must remain in "N" class when eligible for self-service rebooking due to unacceptable schedule changes or irregular operations. If "N" class is unavailable, please contact Uniteds Customer Contact Centers for assistance. Rebooking into an ineligible booking class may result in the issuance of a debit memo. For non-Basic Economy fares, do not rebook into "N" class.
6 June 2020
Now posted on Jetstream -- UA's Travel Agency Rebooking Parameters



UA has stated
On June 5, 2020, United updated its guidance to its contact agents to provide refunds for all flights that had a carrier-initiated schedule change of more than two (2) hours. This change in guidance applies to all passengers, both moving forward and retrospectively, including for carrier-initiated schedule changes throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Wording on UA's Schedule changes page is still vague

12 May 2020 *New* (2nd) Guidance on DOT Refunds
4. May airlines and ticket agents retroactively apply new refund policies?
The Department interprets the statutory prohibition against unfair or deceptive practices to cover actions by airlines and ticket agents applying changes retroactively to their refund policies that affect consumers negatively. The refund policy in place at the time the passenger purchased the ticket is the policy that is applicable to that ticket. The Aviation Enforcement Office would consider the denial of refunds in contravention of the policies that were in effect at the time of the ticket purchase to be an unfair and deceptive practice.The Department interprets the statutory prohibition against unfair or deceptive practices to cover actions by airlines and ticket agents applying changes retroactively to their refund policies that affect consumers negatively. The refund policy in place at the time the passenger purchased the ticket is the policy that is applicable to that ticket. The Aviation Enforcement Office would consider the denial of refunds in contravention of the policies that were in effect at the time of the ticket purchase to be an unfair and deceptive practice.
Choosing between UA Electronic Travel Certificate (ETC) vs Future Flight Credit (FFC)
4 April 2020
Were extending electronic certificates
To give you more flexibility when you travel, electronic certificates are now valid for 24 months from the date they were issued. This includes all currently valid electronic certificates and all new ones issued on or after April 1, 2020.

This policy change will automatically appear, but it may not be reflected everywhere right away. Wed appreciate your patience as we work to make that happen.
As of APR 3:
Both US Department of Transportation and European Commission affirms that a refund must be provided for airline-cancelled flights upon passenger request.
ENFORCEMENT NOTICE REGARDING REFUNDS BY CARRIERS GIVEN THE UNPRECEDENTED IMPACT OF THE COVID-19 PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY ON AIR TRAVEL
European Commission reaffirming on 18 MARCH 2020 that a refund is (still) an option due to cancelled flights despite COVID-19.

Asof 3 April
According to jetstream (UA's travel agency reference resource):

If schedule change > 6 hours (or cancellation with no rebook) a refund is allowed.
If you bought via OTA (Any Online Travel Agency like expedia/orbitz/), and want to perform changes/refund due to the waiver
1) go via OTA first, request cancel per United Jetstream rules
2) if OTA resists and only offers travel credit (instead of refund per Jetstream rules), try contacting UA directly to authorized refund, then contact OTA. Once OTA sees refund, you should get your money back from OTA
3) see this post for more information



For flights departing European Union, UA is required to provide a refund within 7 days upon passenger request for cancellation or schedule change in excess of 5 hours (see Section B).
The
Notice of Passenger Rights granted by EC261/2004 is linked on this UA page.

For purposes of EC261/2004, the following countries are considered "Community member states."
EU means the 27 EU countries , including Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Runion Island, Mayotte, Saint-Martin (French Antilles), the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands as well as Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. It does not include the Faeroe Islands, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.


US DOT position from 2011 concerning cancelled flights and refunds (page 23129)
We reject some carriers and carrier associations assertions that carriers are not required to refund a passengers fare when a flight is cancelled if the carrier can accommodate the passenger with other transportation options after the cancellation. We find it to be manifestly unfair for a carrier to fail to provide the transportation contracted for and then to refuse to provide a refund if the passenger finds the offered rerouting unacceptable (e.g., greatly delayed or otherwise inconvenient) and he or she no longer wishes to travel. Since at least the time of an Industry Letter of July 15, 1996 the Departments Aviation Enforcement Office has advised carriers that refusing to refund a non-refundable fare when a flight is canceled and the passenger wishes to cancel is a violation of 49 U.S.C. 41712 (unfair or deceptive practices) and would subject a carrier to enforcement action.



If you believe UA is not refunding "in good faith" and/or outright violating the policy/rules above, your options are (in no particular order or combination):
  • Make an attempt to reach out to UA again and escalate to supervisor and/or put in a refund request on UA page.
  • File complaint with US DoT or relevant Community member state enforcement agency.
  • File a chargeback with your credit card issuer under "Services not provided" after an attempt (note date/time etc) of resolving with UA has been made. ***CAUTION*** Under VISA rules (Table 11-95), a chargeback has to be initiated within 120 days from the date the service is expected to be delivered. As such, if you don't file a chargeback until you are eligible for a refund under UA's "no refund until ticket expires" or UA subsequently deciding to extend all ticket validity beyond 12 months, you may find you will no longer be able to initiate a chargeback. Mastercard should provide similar timeframes. Need confirmation on AMEX/Discover.
***CAUTION*** UA have been offering Electronic Travel Certificates (ETC) as an option instead of exchanging your ticket for future travel. You may be no longer be eligible for a refund even after ticket expiration or be able to initiate a chargeback if you accept an ETC.

United made a controversial change to their refund policy due to schedule changes during the current COVID-19 situation. United's previous schedule change policy allow for refunds if scheduled changed > 2 hours. If you wish to proceed with a charge back due to UA retroactively apply this change, the following links (policies no longer current) could serve to support your case with your credit card issuer and/or with a regulatory complaint.
https://www.united.com/web/en-US/con...arameters.aspx (This links to policy in effect prior to COVID-19)
https://www.united.com/web/format/pdf/agency/bookticket/AgencyRebookingParameters2016_Print.pdf (This links to policy in effect prior to COVID-19)
BACKUP link - http://archive.is/q8jDz (This links to policy in effect prior to COVID-19 and is not a UA link)


Note: UA is being very reluctant to provide refunds. However UA is allowing "free" mileage redeposit




Related thread: Check Your UA Itineraries for Schedule Changes and what to do after one

archive thread: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/unit...d-archive.html


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Schedule Change(Back to 2hrs) / Cancelation Refund [Archive]

Old Mar 7, 2020, 4:57 pm
  #1  
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Schedule Change(Back to 2hrs) / Cancelation Refund [Archive]

*UPDATE June 6* UA has now changed the refund threshold back to 2 hours, for both UA and non-UA flights on 016 ticket.
This applies retroactively to tickets you already received credits for too (and have not used). See options as seen on Jetstream,
Refund window is still longer - up to 21 business days:





*UPDATE March 12* UA has changed the refund threshold from 25+ hours to 6+ hours, as seen on Jetstream and mentioned via Tweet below:

And on UA's schedule change page, 25+ hours has been replaced with "significantly changes":
https://www.united.com/ual/en/us/fly...e-changes.html



ORIGINAL source with 25+ hrs from March 7:
Per source:

Last edited by kevflyer; Jun 6, 2020 at 12:01 pm Reason: UA now changed it to 2 hours again
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 5:13 pm
  #2  
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So we can still request a refund after jumping through more hoops, but it won't be an "Involuntary refund"..?

A 25 hr schedule change is pretty significant! Won't the travel in vain kick in at that point?
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 6:01 pm
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That's seriously disturbing. I am curious what the DOT will say about this. Essentially UA is saying 'I can rebook you a day later and you have no recourse'? Don't think that is going to fly.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 6:57 pm
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Wow that smacks of desperation. I wonder what happens when the original return is same day or within 25 hours.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:06 pm
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Originally Posted by ctbarron
Wow that smacks of desperation. I wonder what happens when the original return is same day or within 25 hours.
Congratulations, you now have a round trip in the opposite direction!
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:10 pm
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chargeback time.

helpful for tickets issued prior to today
https://web.archive.org/web/20191120...e-changes.html
Attached Images
File Type: pdf
United Schedule Change Policy.pdf (220.8 KB, 288 views)
File Type: pdf
United Schedule Change Policy.pdf (109.1 KB, 205 views)

Last edited by Colin; Mar 7, 2020 at 7:17 pm
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:19 pm
  #7  
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So is this a temporary move while the schedule is being reduced or perm?
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:21 pm
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Or you could spend 30 seconds looking at the COC and see that UA expressly provides for changes with a change of as little as 30 minutes for arrival or departuure. Rule 24.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:26 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1
Or you could spend 30 seconds looking at the COC and see that UA expressly provides for changes with a change of as little as 30 minutes for arrival or departuure. Rule 24.
Unless UA claims this rule overrides that. Or they change their COC.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:34 pm
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Originally Posted by Often1
Or you could spend 30 seconds looking at the COC and see that UA expressly provides for changes with a change of as little as 30 minutes for arrival or departuure. Rule 24.
I'm looking now and I see Rule 24 as you mentioned allows for as low as a 30 minute schedule change, but then what is the old "2 hour rule" being referenced? And if this now counts as a 'voluntary' refund, then Rule 27.b4 doesn't require a refund with partners (must be UA stock), and 27.b5 says UA can apply an administrative charge (change fee? cancellation fee?). Also I wonder (since I'm not a lawyer) how Basic tickets count as vol. vs. invol refunds.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:39 pm
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Originally Posted by ctbarron
Unless UA claims this rule overrides that. Or they change their COC.
Even if the COC was officially changed, are they even legally able to change those terms on tickets booked prior to the change?

When we buy tickets, we agree to the terms, and Im ok with that. I fail to see how they can enforce a term that didnt exist at the time I gave my agreement. Or did I miss a line saying I agree to any terms that get updated after the time of the agreement.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 7:48 pm
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United is literally begging for a revival of Passengers' Bill of Rights efforts if this nonsense survives beyond Monday. Airlines generally get a ton of leeway so long as they do not absurdly violate basic principles of contract/consumer law, and a 25-hour threshold for an involuntary refund goes well into the absurd territory.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 8:00 pm
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United just upped the schedule change threshold for involuntary refunds from 2+ hours to 25+ hours. No one should be buying flights on United 016 ticket stock until this ridiculous rule change is rescinded. Period.
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Old Mar 7, 2020, 8:06 pm
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I'm not a regular inhabitant/reader of the AA and DL fora - anything similar there?

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Old Mar 7, 2020, 8:08 pm
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Originally Posted by emcampbe
Even if the COC was officially changed, are they even legally able to change those terms on tickets booked prior to the change?

When we buy tickets, we agree to the terms, and Im ok with that. I fail to see how they can enforce a term that didnt exist at the time I gave my agreement. Or did I miss a line saying I agree to any terms that get updated after the time of the agreement.
In a quick reading I didnt see anything on changes getting retroactively applied. Rule 3.E indicates the COC in effect when the ticket is purchased is the governing document, unless there is something different in an individual fare rule. I also noted that Rule 24 and 27 give UA a bit more discretion than I remember, but nothing way out of line like 25 hours.

My last thought was if UA (or other airlines) will begin rolling out force majeure to justify changes. Pandemic was not listed as an event, but the language does contain anything else we can forgot.
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