U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Travel
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 02-28-2018, 11:37 PM
 
6,353 posts, read 5,164,700 times
Reputation: 8527

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
Yep. For the life of me, I don't understand why anyone would use an online travel agency to book an airline ticket. You don't save any money and it adds a layer which pretty much guarantees bad service if something goes wrong.
Because the online travel agencies enable you to easily compare fares and schedules. Then the OTA makes it easy to book the ticket, while going to the airline's web site takes extra effort and, if the airline is unfamiliar or foreign, you have to learn your way around the web site, put in your credit card information, etc.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 03-01-2018, 06:04 AM
 
Location: Middle of the Pacific Ocean
11,716 posts, read 6,298,302 times
Reputation: 11551
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Siegel View Post
Because the online travel agencies enable you to easily compare fares and schedules. Then the OTA makes it easy to book the ticket, while going to the airline's web site takes extra effort and, if the airline is unfamiliar or foreign, you have to learn your way around the web site, put in your credit card information, etc.
Pretty much this. I do still check on the airline's website to compare prices, too, though.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 09:49 AM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ > Raleigh, NC
15,078 posts, read 19,030,481 times
Reputation: 24192
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Siegel View Post
Because the online travel agencies enable you to easily compare fares and schedules. Then the OTA makes it easy to book the ticket, while going to the airline's web site takes extra effort and, if the airline is unfamiliar or foreign, you have to learn your way around the web site, put in your credit card information, etc.
I'll totally agree with you that the OTA makes it easy to compare fares and schedules.

But booking through them? No way. You have a problem with a flight or a connection, that OTA isn't going to be much help, and (sadly) the airline involved with the problem isn't going to be too interested in helping you. You'll be going to the bottom of the list for assistance.

Having been in that position ONCE, I'll spend ten minutes of my time hassling with the individual airline site rather than endless hours sitting in an airport waiting to get my flight arrangements re-arranged.

PS - your credit card information is everywhere. There's no protecting it anymore. EVER. The best you can do is lock your credit reports.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 09:55 AM
 
71,654 posts, read 71,801,099 times
Reputation: 49241
the carry on's have been getting out of hand . there are so many bigger carry on bags now the overheads can't fit the stuff they were really designed to supposed to .

everyone bought the max sizes in carry on bags to avoid the checked bag charges but it really starts to get silly with so many big bags that don't fit and end up getting checked for free .
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 10:31 AM
 
9,426 posts, read 7,094,161 times
Reputation: 12202
Quote:
Originally Posted by prospectheightsresident View Post
This sounds about right. I got to the airport today 30 minutes before my flight and American wouldn't check my bags as I was late. My fault so can't be mad at the airline. I'm curious about the fee to rebook, though. I've been too late to board on both domestic and international flights, but airlines have always rebooked me on the next available flight at no additional charge.
You're referencing the old "Flat Tire Rule" which was supplanted by the "No Favors, No Waivers" rule... They're much more apt to not charge a change fee if you're an elite member of their frequent flier program, but.. If you're just a guy off the street.. Not so much.

I'm assuming that they rebooked him at check-in.. I am suspicious that it was 'automatically' rebooked, which the OP seems to be indicating.. But, again, the original post is so poorly worded, I'm not positive about that.

Most likely, if he hadn't shown up by flight time, they would have not auto-rebooked him and would have just marked him as a no-show meaning they kept his money and would make him buy a new walk-up rate ticket.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 02:27 PM
 
Location: Middle of the Pacific Ocean
11,716 posts, read 6,298,302 times
Reputation: 11551
Quote:
Originally Posted by Labonte18 View Post
You're referencing the old "Flat Tire Rule" which was supplanted by the "No Favors, No Waivers" rule... They're much more apt to not charge a change fee if you're an elite member of their frequent flier program, but.. If you're just a guy off the street.. Not so much.

I'm assuming that they rebooked him at check-in.. I am suspicious that it was 'automatically' rebooked, which the OP seems to be indicating.. But, again, the original post is so poorly worded, I'm not positive about that.

Most likely, if he hadn't shown up by flight time, they would have not auto-rebooked him and would have just marked him as a no-show meaning they kept his money and would make him buy a new walk-up rate ticket.
Supplanted when/how? Perhaps I'm not familiar with how the Flat Tire Rule worked decades ago, but since I've been seriously flying (since 2008 or so), airlines have always rebooked me for free on the next available flight, provided that I actually showed up at the airport within a few hours of missing my flight (they've never rebooked me over the phone and have actually insisted that I needed to be there in person to get the benefit . . . I tried calling ahead once while on the train to the San Francisco airport to let the airlines know I'd be late). But, yeah, I am suspicious about being automatically rebooked, too, if that's what the OP was referencing.

Btw, I have discussed the flat tire rule supposedly going away before in this forum:

See: Buying two tickets

and

Buying two tickets

Moreover, this more recent article (only a few months old) shows the Flat Tire Rule is alive and well: https://thepointsguy.com/guide/missing-a-flight/
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 04:28 PM
 
9,426 posts, read 7,094,161 times
Reputation: 12202
Quote:
Originally Posted by prospectheightsresident View Post
Supplanted when/how? Perhaps I'm not familiar with how the Flat Tire Rule worked decades ago, but since I've been seriously flying (since 2008 or so), airlines have always rebooked me for free on the next available flight, provided that I actually showed up at the airport within a few hours of missing my flight (they've never rebooked me over the phone and have actually insisted that I needed to be there in person to get the benefit . . . I tried calling ahead once while on the train to the San Francisco airport to let the airlines know I'd be late). But, yeah, I am suspicious about being automatically rebooked, too, if that's what the OP was referencing.

Btw, I have discussed the flat tire rule supposedly going away before in this forum:

See: Buying two tickets

and

Buying two tickets

Moreover, this more recent article (only a few months old) shows the Flat Tire Rule is alive and well: https://thepointsguy.com/guide/missing-a-flight/
Pay close attention to what that article actually says.. American no change fees if you fly standby on the next flight. If you were on the last of the day, or can't get on the next flight.. Probably getting charged.

Delta.. Discretion of agent.

Southwest.. As with everything.. Good service. As long as you tell them within 10 minutes of the flight leaving.. they don't charge change fees anyway, so.. This is just a nothing to see here.

United.. Not much info there.

But.. You notice all of these, other than Southwest.. They don't put any of it in writing. If it isn't in writing, you cannot depend on it.

I certainly would not rely on any of these 'unwritten' policies. Relatively certain that noone INTENTIONALLY misses their flight, but.. Even in that article, he mentions that as an option. I'd say that's playing with fire.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 04:39 PM
 
Location: Middle of the Pacific Ocean
11,716 posts, read 6,298,302 times
Reputation: 11551
Quote:
Originally Posted by Labonte18 View Post
Pay close attention to what that article actually says.. American no change fees if you fly standby on the next flight. If you were on the last of the day, or can't get on the next flight.. Probably getting charged.

Delta.. Discretion of agent.

Southwest.. As with everything.. Good service. As long as you tell them within 10 minutes of the flight leaving.. they don't charge change fees anyway, so.. This is just a nothing to see here.

United.. Not much info there.

But.. You notice all of these, other than Southwest.. They don't put any of it in writing. If it isn't in writing, you cannot depend on it.

I certainly would not rely on any of these 'unwritten' policies. Relatively certain that noone INTENTIONALLY misses their flight, but.. Even in that article, he mentions that as an option. I'd say that's playing with fire.
Yes, pay attention to what the article says.

American: yes, standby (flat tire rule has always been standby, though, albeit high priority standby. They weren't kicking off people who had already paid and were on time for their flights for you). However (and I just experienced this most recently yesterday on my flight from NYC to Honolulu), once American rebooks you and gives you an actual ticket, you're know that you're getting on the next flight.

Delta: this airline has an "official" flat tire rule. The discretion of the agent point only goes to determining whether someone has a "good faith" reason for arriving late. I've never been denied rebooking with Delta and don't know anyone who has under their flat tire rule.

United: passengers must present themselves within 2 hrs of their flight departing to take advantage of (this seems to be the standard).

Southwest: pretty clear what their policy is . . . pretty much the same as the other airlines.

And, whether in writing on not (and I'm not sure if most flat tire rules were ever in writing), this is the practice of the airline industry. In short, the flat tire rule is very much a thing. Also, contractually (particularly when we get into detrimental reliance, etc.), whether a rule is in writing has no bearing on whether a party has to enforce that rule. A contract has been formed. So, yes, people may very well rely on the flat tire rule, regardless of whether it is in writing.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 05:12 PM
 
9,426 posts, read 7,094,161 times
Reputation: 12202
Quote:
Originally Posted by prospectheightsresident View Post
Yes, pay attention to what the article says.

American: yes, standby (flat tire rule has always been standby, though, albeit high priority standby. They weren't kicking off people who had already paid and were on time for their flights for you). However (and I just experienced this most recently yesterday on my flight from NYC to Honolulu), once American rebooks you and gives you an actual ticket, you're know that you're getting on the next flight.

Delta: this airline has an "official" flat tire rule. The discretion of the agent point only goes to determining whether someone has a "good faith" reason for arriving late. I've never been denied rebooking with Delta and don't know anyone who has under their flat tire rule.

United: passengers must present themselves within 2 hrs of their flight departing to take advantage of (this seems to be the standard).

Southwest: pretty clear what their policy is . . . pretty much the same as the other airlines.

And, whether in writing on not (and I'm not sure if most flat tire rules were ever in writing), this is the practice of the airline industry. In short, the flat tire rule is very much a thing. Also, contractually (particularly when we get into detrimental reliance, etc.), whether a rule is in writing has no bearing on whether a party has to enforce that rule. A contract has been formed. So, yes, people may very well rely on the flat tire rule, regardless of whether it is in writing.
So, your position is.. You're in a contract, a clause is not in the contract, and you can rely on it?

More power to you. While unwritten rules are generally followed, There is nothing to enforce them being followed.

Any of those that are not in writing, are at the discretion of the airline. subject to change at any time.

I'm not saying that, even with Delta, whose unwritten rule is "Discretion of Agent" that they'd ever charge you or refuse to rebook you. But, they have that right.

Can this trip be saved? A flat tire on the way to the airport -- and a $273 fee to fly

I invoke the "Flat Tire Rule"! That's definitely a thing, right?

Hey Air China what happened to the "flat tire" rule?

Should Frontier bend its ticket change rules during bad weather?

Now.. Those are all either foreign carriers or USAirways, which doesn't exist anymore (And finally gave in and did the right thing).. Or Frontier which.. I'd hope we'd both agree that a low cost carrier we would expect they'd charge you since they charge for everything else.. But.. It is not a guarantee even with the legacy. It'd be SURPRISING if they didn't work with you, but then again.. Might not be all that surprising.

This article, from all the way back in 2007.. I think succinctly explains it

Flat tire rule goes flat

You're at the mercy of the agent, but.. Unless you're a total D-bag to them, they're likely going to help you.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-01-2018, 06:00 PM
 
Location: Middle of the Pacific Ocean
11,716 posts, read 6,298,302 times
Reputation: 11551
Quote:
Originally Posted by Labonte18 View Post
So, your position is.. You're in a contract, a clause is not in the contract, and you can rely on it?

More power to you. While unwritten rules are generally followed, There is nothing to enforce them being followed.

Any of those that are not in writing, are at the discretion of the airline. subject to change at any time.

I'm not saying that, even with Delta, whose unwritten rule is "Discretion of Agent" that they'd ever charge you or refuse to rebook you. But, they have that right.

Can this trip be saved? A flat tire on the way to the airport -- and a $273 fee to fly

I invoke the "Flat Tire Rule"! That's definitely a thing, right?

Hey Air China what happened to the "flat tire" rule?

Should Frontier bend its ticket change rules during bad weather?

Now.. Those are all either foreign carriers or USAirways, which doesn't exist anymore (And finally gave in and did the right thing).. Or Frontier which.. I'd hope we'd both agree that a low cost carrier we would expect they'd charge you since they charge for everything else.. But.. It is not a guarantee even with the legacy. It'd be SURPRISING if they didn't work with you, but then again.. Might not be all that surprising.

This article, from all the way back in 2007.. I think succinctly explains it

Flat tire rule goes flat

You're at the mercy of the agent, but.. Unless you're a total D-bag to them, they're likely going to help you.
Its not my position. Its the law of contracts. Contracts need not be written to be enforceable. And where the law requires that specific contracts be in writing (or where all the elements of contract law are not otherwise met), a contract can still be enforceable if a party detrimentally and reasonably relied on an understanding/promise.

As for those articles: the US Airways article deals with people who were not at the airport when they knew they would miss their flights. For Etihad, it involved people who arrived at the airport so late that they had no physical airline representative to talk to as they were all involved in the boarding process (it seems that some of these airlines--particularly foreign airlines--don't have a permanent agent representative, but rely on the flight staff to do that up until a certain point before boarding). With Air China, I am not even sure how late the people were (I just know that they were not more than 5 hours late as their travel insurance would've covered in that case). For Frontier, the individuals didn't even make it to the airport due to inclement weather. Still, on the whole, I am not sure how foreign airlines deal with the flat tire rule as my experiences with airlines and that rule have only been with domestic airlines.

Under the articles I posted and my own experience with airlines, the flat tire rule is only a thing if you're at the airport to physically talk with an agent. Otherwise, the airline will charge you the standard price of a ticket change. The flat tire rule is meant to accommodate those who miss their flight within a reasonable time period, even though you've made every effort to get to the airport (as shown by your eventual arrival at the airport). Airlines cannot verify that have done all of this if you're merely making a phone call.

I definitely agree with the overall posture of the final article you post. Even though I have no problem relying on the flat tire rule (and, hey, it hasn't failed me yet!), I would do everything the article states. Indeed, even though I don't expect to have the flat tire rule apply when I make a phone call, giving the airline a heads up that you will be late via telephone can only help you cause in my case. As can being nice to the agent, etc.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Travel
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top