VDB taken back

 
Old Mar 17, 11, 10:17 am
  #1  
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VDB taken back

My son, who is 21 and a 1P, flew home from COS through ORD to IAD yesterday. At COS, he volunteered for VDB and received a $400 certificate and was issued boarding passes from COS-DEN-IAD (which would have gotten him home 10 minutes later).

A few minutes after he had the cert and the BPs, he was called back to the podium and was told that there was a potential problem with the new itinerary, was rebooked on COS-ORD-IAD as originally, and had to give the cert back.

I checked the flight schedules for the other flights and they were all OK. COS-DEN left 10 minutes late but arrived early and DEN-IAD was on time.

Did they take advantage of a 21-year old or could there be something real in taking back the cert?
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:27 am
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If he flew his original itinerary, then no VDB compensation was due. Till that plane leaves, all can change at a moments notice.
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:28 am
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This is why once I get the vdb cert in my hand, I take off and don't come back!
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:30 am
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That's bizarre.

My guess is that there was no actual problem with the new itinerary and the GA realized they didn't need volunteers after all (and potentially was scolded for processing volunteers early).

Having to give back the VDB seems like bad form.
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:30 am
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Originally Posted by cbechdel View Post
If he flew his original itinerary, then no VDB compensation was due. Till that plane leaves, all can change at a moments notice.
I understand that, but my question is: Did they take advantage of him--switching him and then switching him back to get the cert back?
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:33 am
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Originally Posted by IADtoWhere View Post
This is why once I get the vdb cert in my hand, I take off and don't come back!
Haha I'm going to have to remember to start doing that too!
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:35 am
  #7  
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Originally Posted by euslaner View Post
I understand that, but my question is: Did they take advantage of him--switching him and then switching him back to get the cert back?
My opinion: probably. They likely assumed that your son wouldn't put up a fight and realize there was some pretty bad customer service going on here.
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:43 am
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Originally Posted by euslaner View Post
I understand that, but my question is: Did they take advantage of him--switching him and then switching him back to get the cert back?
I think you're reading too much into the situation. Seems like a very convoluted way to mess with someone and why would they want to mess with him in the first place? Simply sounds like the flight wasn't oversold after all and they said "oh, we can get you on so we'll need to take back the VDB comp as you are not giving up your seat."

Yes, they shouldn't have given it out until they knew for sure that they needed the seat but is it really likely that they said "hey watch this, we'll mess with this guy and give him a voucher and then we'll switch him back to this flight just so we can take the voucher back."?
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:44 am
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Were there multiple people issued VDB and he was the lucky one to be selected to give back? The there is a POSSIBILITY they chos the "weakest of the bunch". If he was the ONLY one issued VDB, then no, he was the ONLY one to put back on the plane when a seat opened up.
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:47 am
  #10  
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Originally Posted by justhere View Post
is it really likely that they said "hey watch this, we'll mess with this guy and give him a voucher and then we'll switch him back to this flight just so we can take the voucher back."?
I'm not sure that's the standard for being taken advantage of. @:-)
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:53 am
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ps. new rules for VDB. take cert and run! I love FT..
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:55 am
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Why are people crying foul here?

They obviously ended up not needing his seat, since he was put back on the original flight. No VDB, therefore no VDB compensation.

Whether he is 21 or 121 is irrelevant.

I don't see the problem. It seems to me that the GA made a mistake by VDB-ing him to early and then immediately corrected it. No harm, no foul.
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Old Mar 17, 11, 10:58 am
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Originally Posted by g_leyser View Post
They obviously ended up not needing his seat, since he was put back on the original flight. No VDB, therefore no VDB compensation.
If they didn't need the seat then they shouldn't have processed the VDB. @:-) That's why they ask for volunteers and process them later - they usually wait until boarding has started (or finished) to process.

My hunch is that they simply would not ask a well-dressed business man in his 50s to return the VDB. Just a hunch. And that's what the OP is asking about: did his son get screwed because he is young, looks young, and so forth. None of us knows, obviously, but my guess is yes.

Edited to add: Being 1P makes the situation worse as well. UA should have said, "We goofed. Here is your original seat back. Enjoy the VDB."
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Old Mar 17, 11, 11:00 am
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It is subjective whether someone would rather have the vouchers or be on their original flight. For those of us who frequent these forums, the answer is invariably the vouchers, but we're the minority of the flying public.

If the GA does something that the passenger is aware of and that passenger has no complaint, then no wrong has been done by the GA.

(yes, I realize in this case with only a 10min differential, just about anyone would want the vouchers).

Last edited by TheBagman; Mar 17, 11 at 11:06 am
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Old Mar 17, 11, 11:01 am
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My thought is that the GA processed the VDB too early and OP's son might be the only person who got a VDB so that's why they had no choice but to call him back.

My 2 most recent VDBs, both within 1 week of each other had drastically different approaches.

First VDB was not processed until everyone had boarded and doors closed.

Second VDB was processed and I left the gate area with certs and BP for later flight 10 mins before boarding began.

So my thoughts are it all depends on the situation and next time, take off and run
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