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Faithful blog readers might remember my flight saga last month, when my trip to Europe was interrupted by an Aer Lingus flight cancellation on our flight from Boston to Dublin
(SEE ALSO: 5 things I did right when my flight was canceled)
(SEE ALSO: 3 mistakes I made when my flight was canceled)
My original flight was on September 17th, and so over the course of the last month or so, I’ve taken a few steps to try and get my Avios back
Step 1: Contacting British Airways the next morning
The morning after the flight was canceled, as I was staying in the hotel where Aer Lingus put us up, I called British Airways (in addition to being on hold with Aer Lingus for THREE HOURS!). They were SUPER unhelpful. They said that there was no availability (because they only have access to Aer Lingus’s low-level award availability) for the next three days. I tried to get them to just fly me from Boston straight to London, but they would not do that because it’s in a different “band”. Even when I offered to fly economy to London (which would be 20,000 Avios per person instead of the 25,000 Avios I had originally paid for business class from Boston to Dublin), they would not do it.
The only thing they offered is to refund my 50,000 Avios and taxes paid. I did NOT take them up on that, since I was worried that might cancel my reservation and leave me without any recourse to getting rebooked.
Step 2: Calling the British Airways Executive Club customer service line
I didn’t have any phone access while I was in Europe, so when we returned back to the States, I called British Airways to have them refund my Avios. The gentleman I spoke to said that he would open up a ticket with the refunds department and request the refund. He said this might take a few days or a week.
Fast forward a few weeks and….. nothing.
Step 3: Calling British Airways…. AGAIN!
This afternoon, I called again, and the lady that I spoke to (besides calling me Mr. “Mile-r”, which I thought was a GREAT nickname!) told me that the refunds department had denied my refund request because the ticket was marked as “flown”. I don’t pretend to know the intricacies of how airline tickets work, but I’m guessing that when Aer Lingus rebooked me, even though it was a different flight and a different class of service, that in some system somewhere, that “completed” my ticket?
She advised me to open up a case with British Airways customer relations, which I did. She said that they would contact me within 15 days. We shall see…
In the meantime, I have also filed an EU261 request directly with Aer Lingus. We shall see if I actually get the 600 Euros in compensation from Aer Lingus
Any thoughts from anyone who has dealt with this kind of problem before? Even though it was British Airways who originally offered the refund of the 50,000 Avios, I’d be okay with just a refund of the 25,000 Avios based on being downgraded from business to economy. The 1200 Euros from 2 EU261 cases would be gravy (and according to how I read the law, I AM entitled to that)