To fly from San Francisco to Paris last month, Kenneth Cook forked over 100,00 miles and paid a $194 fee 10 months before his scheduled flight. The routing wasn’t ideal — it sent him via Denver and Frankfurt, but for that, he was getting choice seats in the front of the plane.
The least he expected was the see his luggage at the end of the journey, and that if he didn’t, the airline would take care of everything.
Editor’s note: This is the second installation of a new feature, “What would you do?” Here’s how it works: At 7 a.m. Eastern time, I present a case and ask you how you’d solve it. You can take a poll or sound off in the comments. At 5 p.m., I’ll reveal the poll results and tell you how it was fixed.
Liquid and gel restrictions have never been particularly easy to follow for air travelers, especially when they’re on an international trip. Is it 3-1-1? Or 1-3-3? Can I bring a drink on a domestic flight within Europe?
Those are the questions Sofia Romano pondered while sitting in first class on a British Airways flight from Los Angeles to London recently. She’d been eying a bottle of cognac from the duty-free cart, and a flight attendant assured her the beverage would make a smooth transfer to her Glasgow flight. So she plunked down $70 for a bottle of Remy Martin.
But when she tried to board her flight to Scotland a few hours later, the security agents had other ideas.
I was stopped by security and told that I would not be able to take the bottle of Remy Martin with me. I showed them my receipt, plus the fact that I just came from my flight, and they said that whomever had “packed” the bottle should have packed it in a plastic bag that was sealed with the receipt inside the bag.
I told them that I just disembarked from this flight and again showed them the receipt that the only place I could purchase this item was on board. They told me that the cabin crew member “should have known” what to do.
Oops. The security guys were right. There goes a perfectly good bottle of cognac, down the drain.
Answer: I’m sorry about your father. British Airways should have refunded your tickets right away. But it didn’t have to.
If your tickets were nonrefundable, as most are, and you canceled your reservations, then British Airways only needs to return your taxes and fees. It could be worse: Many domestic airlines give you nothing when you cancel a nonrefundable ticket. After all, it’s a nonrefundable ticket. (Some domestic airlines refund taxes and fees, but most of them don’t.) Continue reading…