Time to Sue American Airlines (Again)

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March 4th, 2020, I was supposed to go to San Diego. Paranoid about COVID, I called AA to say that I wanted to cancel my flight. At that time, no one was worried about COVID and there was not an official government directive on the virus. As such, AA initially said it would not refund the ticket nor would it provide a voucher. After plenty of yelling, I was finally given the ‘courtesy’ of receiving a travel credit towards a future flight. The next step was to call the conference and ask for a refund. Initially, they also said no and promised that the conference would be safe. The person said, “Don’t worry, there will be plenty of hand sanitizer.” I insisted on a refund and was finally told I could have a voucher.

Fast forward a year later, my predictions, despite the angry comments along the way, about this terrible virus have sadly come true (see Travel Or Stay Inside? TPOL’s Thoughts on CoronavirusDo I Stay Or Do I Go? Thoughts on the Second Covid Wave). As the anniversary of my canceled flight approached, I continued to ask AA for a refund for my ticket because I have no immediate travel plans. They would always decline stating that the ticket was non-refundable and that my voucher was valid through February 2022.

The issue is that when I viewed my voucher, it continued to say that it would expire on March 4, 2021. As the expiration date approached, I contacted American Airlines and they stopped responding.

To the shock of none, when I tried to access my voucher today, I received this:

If I call AA, they instruct me to email customer service. It seems like there is no alternative but to go back and not find justice in small courts. Perhaps this is an oversight. Or, more likely, AA did not appreciate that I called them crooks and thieves for not returning my money, opting to give me a voucher that I have no interest in using. Meanwhile, they are enjoying the bailout courtesy of American taxpayers. Contrast this to my experience with Delta which automatically extended my vouchers through December 31, 2022!

 

14 COMMENTS

  1. So the airline, despite that fact that did not have to, gave you a voucher good for one year on a ticket that was clearly non-refundable in the first place. And now, because you have not used the voucher in that year you want another extension or refund? Too bad, your loss IMO. Further, “yelling” and telling the representatives they work for a company of “crooks and thieves” has never proven to be effective…. it only makes you sound like a jerk.

  2. Did you actually read the post? It was supposed to be extended till February of 2022. And oh thank you so much airline for being kind enough to give me a voucher! How can I express my gratitude? Seriously? You must work for AA.

      • I’m not a fan of AA at all and never defend them. But, I’m confused at exactly what your angle is? You bought a non-refundable ticket, they gave you a voucher, and you didn’t use it. You were rude to customer service over this issue, by your own admission. The only thing you have is one email from AA saying it was extended to 2022, which may have been a mistake.

        I’m sorry, but AA has already shown you goodwill here. If you buy a non-refundable ticket, it is non-refundable, unless the airline changes their mind.

        There is plenty AA should be sued for … this isn’t one of them.

        • Oh it was a mistake to write on AA letterhead that it will be extended? So I should not have relied on it? That is your legal argument? You would be a terrible consumer advocate. Fortunately, that is not how the law works. Being rude also is not a legal basis for changing the expiration.

          I don’t care if it was non refundable when I purchased it. When I am told it is extended then it should be extended. Even the agent on the phone said that AA’s policy is to extend all tickets purchased last year through this year.

          I guess if it was you, you would just take the loss. Or I predict a snarky retort that you never would have booked a non refundable ticket.

        • @thepointsoflife you clearly have anger issues. I was pointing out the facts and stating my opinion. You may have argument on the extension issue, but is it really worth the fight over, I’m assuming a few hundred dollars? On the refund issue, you have zero grounds.

          Funny you mention that I am a bad advocate. I’m an attorney and quite an effective advocate, at least according to my record. The difference is knowing what battles to pick and how to conduct yourself. You have room for improvement in those two areas

          I wish you the best of luck with your AA fight. Keep us posted on the outcome of your lawsuit.

        • I appreciate the diagnosis. Are you a doctor and a lawyer? That’s impressive. Yes, it is worth fighting over. That’s the basis of my law practice. If it’s $1 or $1 million dollars, consumers are entitled to what they are promised. I won’t apologize for having companies stay true to their word.

          Also, thank you for the unsolicited advice in professional development. Finally, I’m not actually going to sue. If you actually clicked on the link, you will see that small claims is a bs option against airlines that postpone the process until the claimant gives up.

          Finally, I don’t need your luck. I’m not angry. I’m just TPOL.

  3. You seem like a pretty persistent person – keep it up : 800-433-7300… I found in similar situation writing the corporate HQ helps ( United )

    AA : 1 Skyview Drive, Fort Worth, TX

    Strange a phone call doesn’t remedy the issue

  4. I would keep calling until they were so sick of hearing my voice that they’d extend the voucher… (I call it being lovingly annoying or annoyingly loving . . . take your pick)

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