Denied claim for reimbursement of rebooked return flight cost after Delta refuses to print my boarding pass

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Dec 31, 2019
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I have Delta Platinum status. Wife and I returning to Salt Lake City from Africa on December 20, 2019, with First Class tickets. Final leg connecting flight is Toronto to Salt Lake. Arrived at Delta Sky Priority counter to request boarding passes for Toronto to Salt Lake flight, which departed one hour later. Delta agent denied both of us a board pass, claiming we arrived at his counter 7 minutes too late-now 53 minutes to scheduled departure. He would not rebook a later flight. I called Delta Help Line to rebook and was told nothing could be done because all Delta Flights to the United States are sold for December 20 and for December 21, 2019. I rebooked a return First Class flight from Toronto to Atlanta to Salt Lake by myself for that same day with my phone app. Each ticket cost $1,317.43, which is $848.40 more than my ticket from Toronto to Salt Lake ($469.03). I arrived at the boarding gate and see the flight from Toronto to Salt Lake is still boarding. Delta boarding agent won't let us board without boarding passes. On December 21, 2019, phoned Delta to request reimbursement of the two $1,317.43 tickets. Delta agent said claim should be approved and look for email from Delta. Six days later, my claim was denied by email by Delta because "these tickets were fully used." Delta agreed to refund only the cost of the two Toronto to Salt Lake tickets at $469.03 each, because "these tickets were not used". I used Delta Platinum AmEx for all bookings. I have filed a claim with AmEx. Thank you for you advise.
 
Dec 31, 2019
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Thank you. Yes. he wasn't able to override the system. My connection was suppose to be 1.5 hours. In fact, it became a little less than 1.5 hours, but that was because connection from Amsterdam to Toronto (Delta partner KLM Airlines) departed Amsterdam late (not weather related). I arrived at the Sky Priority line with about 1.25 hours to scheduled departure from Toronto. The Sky Priority line had a single Delta agent, which kept me in the boarding pass line for about 25 minutes. By the time Delta agent got to me there was 57 minutes left and he said the system locked him out. The late arrival and his system lock out was the reason I had to book another flight at greater cost. So, I think it boils down to is does Delta profit by selling another ticket or does Delta reimburse. And, the flight out of Toronto was also delayed beyond the stated departure time which cause the system lock out, so it really was more like 1.5 hours to departure of my flight when his system locked him out. It seemed like a cascade of errors.
 
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Jun 24, 2019
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See my previous comment. As I understand the rules, if the tickets (at least from Amsterdam on) were on one PNR, and KLM did not give you boarding passes in Amsterdam for the SLC flight, and KLM got you to Toronto too late to make the transfer, then KLM/Delta was obligated to get you on the next available flight to SLC.

At some point today, we'll advise you about how to write to Delta, but what we are trying to do is get info to help you make your best case.
 
Mar 17, 2015
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I am confused as to why you had to wait in line for boarding passes. Generally, when checking into a flight on a single PNR, you will be given all of your boarding passes when you check into the first flight. So the question we are all asking you, is if this was one ticket for the entire flight, i.e. you booked on KLM or Delta for a flight from Africa to SLC, with connections in AMS and Toronto. OR, did you book on one website/airline the ticket from Africa to Toronto and then book separate tickets for Toronto to SLC? Depending on how this was booked will help us give you advice.

Not that this helps you now, but does Delta have an app that you could have used to check yourself in and then you would have had a mobile pass to board the plane. Of course, this still would have had to be done before the computer shuts down.
 
Jun 24, 2019
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I am confused as to why you had to wait in line for boarding passes. Generally, when checking into a flight on a single PNR, you will be given all of your boarding passes when you check into the first flight. So the question we are all asking you, is if this was one ticket for the entire flight, i.e. you booked on KLM or Delta for a flight from Africa to SLC, with connections in AMS and Toronto. OR, did you book on one website/airline the ticket from Africa to Toronto and then book separate tickets for Toronto to SLC? Depending on how this was booked will help us give you advice.

Not that this helps you now, but does Delta have an app that you could have used to check yourself in and then you would have had a mobile pass to board the plane. Of course, this still would have had to be done before the computer shuts down.
Delta has an iPhone App, but for an international flight it is possible the app would require a visit to the counter so a passport/visa could be reviewed.
 

Neil Maley

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Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
See my previous comment. As I understand the rules, if the tickets (at least from Amsterdam on) were on one PNR, and KLM did not give you boarding passes in Amsterdam for the SLC flight, and KLM got you to Toronto too late to make the transfer, then KLM/Delta was obligated to get you on the next available flight to SLC.

At some point today, we'll advise you about how to write to Delta, but what we are trying to do is get info to help you make your best case.
This is correct. It sounds like you had two separate tickets. You had all the tickets on one PNR? And you booked through Delta, not a third party website?
 
Dec 31, 2019
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I am confused as to why you had to wait in line for boarding passes. Generally, when checking into a flight on a single PNR, you will be given all of your boarding passes when you check into the first flight. So the question we are all asking you, is if this was one ticket for the entire flight, i.e. you booked on KLM or Delta for a flight from Africa to SLC, with connections in AMS and Toronto. OR, did you book on one website/airline the ticket from Africa to Toronto and then book separate tickets for Toronto to SLC? Depending on how this was booked will help us give you advice.

Not that this helps you now, but does Delta have an app that you could have used to check yourself in and then you would have had a mobile pass to board the plane. Of course, this still would have had to be done before the computer shuts down.
It was not one ticket for the entire flight. I did book separately from Africa to Toronto using Delta and then a separate booking from Toronto to Salt Lake using Delta. I think the Delta app would have worked for downloading boarding pass, immediately upon arrival in Toronto. That would have solved the mess. I did not know Delta had a system to lock out its agents from printing the passes one hour prior to flight.
 
Dec 31, 2019
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Thank you all for your efforts. I am edging up to the reality that at some point the time to recover the $2k extra spent, won't be worth my time. Does anyone have experience with the odds in small claims court? It seems like Delta wouldn't even show up for the court hearing, but I have been wrong about most things here.
 

justlisa

Feb 12, 2019
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It was not one ticket for the entire flight. I did book separately from Africa to Toronto using Delta and then a separate booking from Toronto to Salt Lake using Delta. I think the Delta app would have worked for downloading boarding pass, immediately upon arrival in Toronto. That would have solved the mess. I did not know Delta had a system to lock out its agents from printing the passes one hour prior to flight.
That's your problem. If they were all on one PNR then Delta would have rebooked you due to the KLM flight being late. Since they were separate you being late is all on you - regardless of the reason you're responsible. A 1.5 hour connection is WAY too little when your connection is booked on a separate ticket - especially when you're dealing with international (in Toronto you have to clear Canadian customs and then clear US as well).
 

VoR61

Jan 6, 2015
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Instead of small claims court, in which I think you would not prevail, you can appeal to Delta corporate. I suggest you limit your information to the following:
  • On December 20, 2019 my wife and I were returning to Salt Lake City from Africa
  • Our final leg was a connecting flight from Toronto to Salt Lake, which was booked separately with Delta
  • Our flight arrived in Toronto 1.5 hours ahead of the connecting flight to Salt Lake
  • We arrived at the Delta Sky Priority counter to request boarding passes 53 minutes to scheduled departure
  • We were denied as we missed the 1 hour cutoff, and rebooked another flight from Toronto to Atlanta to Salt Lake
  • Each ticket cost $1,317.43, which is $848.40 more than my ticket from Toronto to Salt Lake
  • Delta agreed to refund only the cost of the two original Toronto to Salt Lake tickets at $469.03 each
I was unaware that booking on one PNR would have spared me this expense, but I would appreciate some additional remuneration as I was only "late" by a few minutes.​
Thank you for your time and consideration​

By presenting the relevant facts and politely requesting additional consideration, you may find a compassionate employee who will grant your request.

Some do's and don'ts when writing
Do not use inflammatory language - be polite, as that increases the likelihood of success
Do not attach files - their email system may discard your email before anyone reads it
Do not start with the CEO - begin at the lowest level in the company contacts shown here: https://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/delta-airlines/
Present a brief summary (list) and give each contact one (1) week to respond before escalating to the next level
 
Last edited:
Jun 24, 2019
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You may wish to write to the contacts listed elsewhere in this web site. As I see it, the best argument you have is that there was only one person doing check-ins, but you have to figure out a way not to be too aggressive about that; your comments ought not be perceived as attacking Delta or its staff. We've all arrived at airports where there seem to be too few personnel to deal with the lines.

From Delta's point of view, you are a new passenger solely taking a flight from Toronto to SLC, because you have the tickets on two PNRs. Delta advises for international flights that you show up 3 hours in advance.

Had your Amsterdam to Toronto flight been further delayed, and you arrived after the Toronto to SLC flight actually departed, you would have been marked as a no-show and probably lost all value to the tickets. As it was, Delta has refunded those tickets to you.
 
Dec 31, 2019
13
13
3
63
Instead of small claims court, in which I think you would not prevail, you can appeal to Delta corporate. I suggest you limit your information to the following:
  • On December 20, 2019 my wife and I were returning to Salt Lake City from Africa
  • Our final leg was a connecting flight from Toronto to Salt Lake, which was booked separately with Delta
  • We arrived at the Delta Sky Priority counter to request boarding passes 53 minutes to scheduled departure
  • We were denied as we missed the 1 hour cutoff, and rebooked another flight from Toronto to Atlanta to Salt Lake
  • Each ticket cost $1,317.43, which is $848.40 more than my ticket from Toronto to Salt Lake
  • Delta agreed to refund only the cost of the two original Toronto to Salt Lake tickets at $469.03 each
I was unaware that booking on one PNR would have spared me this expense, but I would appreciate some additional remuneration as I was only "late" by a few minutes.​
Thank you for your time and consideration​

By presenting the relevant facts and politely requesting additional consideration, you may find a compassionate employee who will grant your request.

Some do's and don'ts when writing
Do not use inflammatory language - be polite, as that increases the likelihood of success
Do not attach files - their email system may discard your email before anyone reads it
Do not start with the CEO - begin at the lowest level in the company contacts shown here: https://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/delta-airlines/
Present a brief summary (list) and give each contact one (1) week to respond before escalating to the next level
Thank you.
 
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Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
23,042
23,001
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
That’s the problem. One reservation doesn’t talk to the other so you couldn’t get the boarding pass.
If you would have booked it as multi-city- you would have had everything on one ticket and they would have been responsible for getting you on another flight at no charge. Delta did nothing wrong.

Use our company contacts and see if Delta will do anything- perhaps they might be willing to give some points.
 
Jun 24, 2019
642
1,217
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Instead of small claims court, in which I think you would not prevail, you can appeal to Delta corporate. I suggest you limit your information to the following:
  • On December 20, 2019 my wife and I were returning to Salt Lake City from Africa
  • Our final leg was a connecting flight from Toronto to Salt Lake, which was booked separately with Delta
  • We arrived at the Delta Sky Priority counter to request boarding passes 53 minutes to scheduled departure
  • We were denied as we missed the 1 hour cutoff, and rebooked another flight from Toronto to Atlanta to Salt Lake
  • Each ticket cost $1,317.43, which is $848.40 more than my ticket from Toronto to Salt Lake
  • Delta agreed to refund only the cost of the two original Toronto to Salt Lake tickets at $469.03 each
I was unaware that booking on one PNR would have spared me this expense, but I would appreciate some additional remuneration as I was only "late" by a few minutes.​
Thank you for your time and consideration​

By presenting the relevant facts and politely requesting additional consideration, you may find a compassionate employee who will grant your request.

Some do's and don'ts when writing
Do not use inflammatory language - be polite, as that increases the likelihood of success
Do not attach files - their email system may discard your email before anyone reads it
Do not start with the CEO - begin at the lowest level in the company contacts shown here: https://www.elliott.org/company-contacts/delta-airlines/
Present a brief summary (list) and give each contact one (1) week to respond before escalating to the next level
What does the commentariat think of modifying bullet point 3 to say: "We arrived in Toronto 1.5 hours before the scheduled departure time of our Salt Lake City flight, and arrived at the Delta Sky Priority Counter 1.25 hours ahead of the departure time. However, we did not get to the front of the line until 53 minutes to go."
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
23,042
23,001
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
What does the commentariat think of modifying bullet point 3 to say: "We arrived in Toronto 1.5 hours before the scheduled departure time of our Salt Lake City flight, and arrived at the Delta Sky Priority Counter 1.25 hours ahead of the departure time. However, we did not get to the front of the line until 53 minutes to go."
It wouldn’t hurt to say that.
 
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VoR61

Jan 6, 2015
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What does the commentariat think of modifying bullet point 3 to say: "We arrived in Toronto 1.5 hours before the scheduled departure time of our Salt Lake City flight, and arrived at the Delta Sky Priority Counter 1.25 hours ahead of the departure time. However, we did not get to the front of the line until 53 minutes to go."
Good suggestion. See my edited version above . . .