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Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump Experiences on UA [2024]

Old Jan 14, 2024, 9:12 am
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Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump Experiences on UA [2019]
Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump Experiences on UA [2018]
Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump on UA [2017]
Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump on UA [2016]
Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump on UA [2015]
Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump on UA 2014
Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump on UA 2013

Related thread - Is this IDB? Am I entitled to IDB compensation? [Consolidated]

VDB -- Voluntary Denied Boarding -- is when the flight is overbooked and the airline is looking for volunteers to change their travel plans. It is voluntary and you do not need to participate. The compensation is 100% negotiable. It could be $100's or even $1,000s in future travel vouchers ($10,000 has been reported), it might be food vouchers, a different routing (perhaps more direct or for MR's more indirect ), perhaps lodging if overnight and sometimes a bump in cabin. It all depends on how desperate the airline is and how flexible you are.

The standard UA policy is after you have agreed to a voucher amount and additional VDBs are still needed, if those passengers get a higher amount, you will also get the higher amount.

There are no DoT requirements for VDB compensation, it is whatever you and the airline agree to. The DoT does require the airline to try VDB before moving to IDB.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA
The changing story of IDB on UA since the merge and post-Dao
source: BTS Data

Code:IDB/VDB data for UA (w/o UX) 1st Qtr
Year VDB IDB
2019 8,856 17
2018 8,214 27
2017 15,917 900
2016 14,380 929
2015 17,373 1,817
2014 21,469 4,395
2013 14,095 2,592

IDB/VDB data for UA (w/ UX) 1st Qtr
Year VDB IDB
2019 20,564 24
2018 16,973 51
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Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump Experiences on UA [2024]

Old Jan 14, 2024, 6:49 am
  #1  
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Voluntary Denied Boarding - VDB/Bump Experiences on UA [2024]

Couldn’t see a 2024 thread.

FLL-EWR this morning (Sunday), $700 + rebook to Tuesday night (!!), hotel. Increased to $1000. I put my name down with two others, they only needed 1; I boarded last.

737 MAX 9 knock on effect, I presume.
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Old Jan 14, 2024, 11:49 am
  #2  
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Did they offer any OAL options or flights ex-MIA? I’m somewhat surprised Tuesday was the best they had available given all the airline capacity in the FLL/MIA area.
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Old Jan 14, 2024, 12:19 pm
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Originally Posted by FriendlySkies
Did they offer any OAL options or flights ex-MIA? I’m somewhat surprised Tuesday was the best they had available given all the airline capacity in the FLL/MIA area.
No. The $700 --> $1000 was to compensate for the Tuesday delay (although it's not that great, tbh). I think one guy got the VDB (I had to board).
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Old Jan 16, 2024, 10:03 am
  #4  
 
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LAX-SFO - $1000! (and to take a flight 15 min later)

Something of a shocker (at least to me)--

Couple days ago, daughter taking 0815 morning flight LAX-SFO. During OLCI, it asked about possible VDB, which she rejected because it didn't give any other flight options and she had to get to SFO that day. Plus I was flying LAX-IAD at the same time, and she didn't want to sit around LAX by herself to deal with any risk of IRROPS after I'd departed.

Her gate was next to mine, while we were standing there, near the group 1 boarding line, about 40 min before departure (just before boarding was to start) they made an announcement needing 3 volunteers for $1000 each.

We walked up, were 1st in line, and asked about what the later options might be, and explaining that my daughter's final destination was SFO, so no onward connection work needed. The GA's then were talking among themselves and 1 said it looked like 2 international arrivals were going to misconnect so they only needed 1 person; the GA talking to us then asked the other if she could pre-emptively remove my daughter from the flight and process the VDB before departure, because -- get this-- they could put her on a nonstop AA flight leaving at 0830.

I said she had a checked bag, and they said no problem, the bag would travel on the UA flight, she would just have to go to T3 at SFO to claim it. They processed the VDB for $1000, confirmed her on the AA flight, she was able to do on OLCI via the AA app, then went running off to T5 (thank goodness for the airside path!).

The AA flight left 13 min after the UA flight (BTW her AA plane was an E170, and all 3 other seats in her row were empty). She landed, took the train to T3, picked up her bag at UA; all told probably an extra 30 min compared to original itinerary, for $1000. Not too shabby. Wondering how common it is for them to pre-emptively remove a VDB from a flight before departure (esp if they think they just needed ONE person) instead of waiting till after boarding?

Here's the other strange part- the person behind us in line at the GA podium, while we were still waiting to talk to the GA about the VDB, was saying to others that she had volunteered on the app at checkin. But apparently the GA's had made no effort to contact those that had already volunteered, and once they processed my daughter's VDB, they didn't need anyone else (so I'm sure she wasn't too happy). So was it an anomaly that those that volunteered in advance were not given priority? If not, then just what's the point of volunteering at checkin if you need to still proactively get the the podium ASAP if they make an announcement asking for volunteers?
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Old Jan 16, 2024, 10:40 am
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Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart
Here's the other strange part- the person behind us in line at the GA podium, while we were still waiting to talk to the GA about the VDB, was saying to others that she had volunteered on the app at checkin. But apparently the GA's had made no effort to contact those that had already volunteered, and once they processed my daughter's VDB, they didn't need anyone else (so I'm sure she wasn't too happy). So was it an anomaly that those that volunteered in advance were not given priority? If not, then just what's the point of volunteering at checkin if you need to still proactively get the the podium ASAP if they make an announcement asking for volunteers?
I just skip the VDB part in the app when checking in. I use it as a sign that I should hurry to the gate and ask the GA about VDB opportunities.
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Old Jan 16, 2024, 10:50 am
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Originally Posted by pseudoswede
I just skip the VDB part in the app when checking in. I use it as a sign that I should hurry to the gate and ask the GA about VDB opportunities.
Thanks, that's kind of what I was thinking. Or is it good to go ahead and do it anyway just in case they use that to prioritize who gets the VDB in the first place? But is there any downside to volunteering in the app, i.e., does doing so potentially limit your compensation to the amount you selected even if the offer at the gate is higher?
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Old Jan 16, 2024, 10:56 am
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Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart
Thanks, that's kind of what I was thinking. Or is it good to go ahead and do it anyway just in case they use that to prioritize who gets the VDB in the first place? But is there any downside to volunteering in the app, i.e., does doing so potentially limit your compensation to the amount you selected even if the offer at the gate is higher?
Definitely no downside to adding yourself on the app. As noted in previous VDB threads, it seems like the GAs are too busy to truly go through the manifest to see who volunteered during OLCI.
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Old Jan 17, 2024, 1:20 am
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Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart
So was it an anomaly that those that volunteered in advance were not given priority?
No.

Originally Posted by Maxwell Smart
If not, then just what's the point of volunteering at checkin if you need to still proactively get the the podium ASAP if they make an announcement asking for volunteers?
The primary purpose of the check-in question is data gathering for UA — what would people accept in a hypothetical VDB.

In practice, agents in a VDB situation are trying to do all of their regular pre-departure tasks plus looking for volunteers. If the person with the lowest bid happens to be available at the gate, they might call that person and ask if they’re still interested, but I doubt they’d spend more than two minutes on that before opening it up to the crowd. It’s just so much easier to deal with the volunteer standing right in front of you than it is to deal with a list full of people, some of whom are going to change their mind anyway, and many of whom might not be in the vicinity of the gate when they’re trying to get the list sorted.
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Old May 18, 2024, 10:53 am
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IAH-LHR looks overbooked this evening, I can easily go tomorrow. Any suggestions how much to put in app during check in?
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Old May 18, 2024, 12:23 pm
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Originally Posted by GVABound
IAH-LHR looks overbooked this evening, I can easily go tomorrow. Any suggestions how much to put in app during check in?
Given that it isn't going to inconvenience you, I would go $749.
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Old May 18, 2024, 12:45 pm
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Originally Posted by GVABound
IAH-LHR looks overbooked this evening, I can easily go tomorrow. Any suggestions how much to put in app during check in?
The consensus of this thread is the amount you enter makes little difference other than show a willingness to take VDB.
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Old May 18, 2024, 7:26 pm
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Originally Posted by GVABound
IAH-LHR looks overbooked this evening, I can easily go tomorrow. Any suggestions how much to put in app during check in?
Originally Posted by WineCountryUA
The consensus of this thread is the amount you enter makes little difference other than show a willingness to take VDB.
Yes, the amount entered seems only part of a data collection exercise. The app also solicits bids when the flight isn't actually over, which appears to be the case for today's IAH-LHR.

Most important step for successful VDB is making contact with the GA and confirming you want to volunteer.
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Old Jun 10, 2024, 7:14 am
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6/8 UA745 LAX-DEN

We just got off a KE ICN-LAX flight and had separate UA tickets to get us home. Upon check-in at LAX, the kiosk said they were looking for volunteers. I just skipped it and proceeded with getting bag tags printed. At T-50m, a GA appeared, and I was 3rd in line. Shortly afterwards, she announced they were looking for two volunteers to take a later flight. It's my turn at the podium, and she was excited to hear that myself and Miss Swede would volunteer (Miss Swede was not as enthused ). She protected us on the 7pm flight (so 6 hours later). I asked how much they were offering, and she said $300 each. I said that's a bit light for having to wait 6 hours, and she bumped it up to $500 each after conferring with a co-worker. She thanked us again, said there's a decent chance we won't be needed but to just hang out by the desk during boarding, and she also asked for my e-mail address and would toss us some miles as a token of appreciation.

Boarding started and Miss Swede and I sat by the desk while the rest of my family boarded the plane. About halfway through BG3, she said that we could board, thanked us again, and we had an uneventful flight home. Upon landing, I had two e-mails with an ETC for Miss Swede and I. Checking the later flights, had we been VDB'd, we could've easily have gotten on either of the two flights between our's and the one we were protected on.
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Old Jun 10, 2024, 7:31 am
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How could an A320 be so overweight that 20 pax were offered $60 in food vouchers and $1500 in flight credits AND the flight had to stop for fuel in ORD enroute? That is what apparently happened to UA 2012 (BWI-DEN) on 6/8, according to folks posting on Facebook.

Must have been some real heavy and valuable cargo on that flight.
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Old Jun 10, 2024, 9:07 am
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Originally Posted by halls120
How could an A320 be so overweight that 20 pax were offered $60 in food vouchers and $1500 in flight credits AND the flight had to stop for fuel in ORD enroute? That is what apparently happened to UA 2012 (BWI-DEN) on 6/8, according to folks posting on Facebook.

Must have been some real heavy and valuable cargo on that flight.

if you figure out how to predict that, please let me know so I can book this flight every time.
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