Refund for non-refundable tickets

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Jan 30, 2018
I need some advice on what I can do to get non-refundable tickets refunded.
In November, 2017, I purchased roundtrip tickets with Orbitz (flying with Copa Air) for me and my children to travel from NYC to South America to visit my family. The trip was scheduled for Dec 15-30, 2017. In late November, I found out I was pregnant and my health care provider warned me of the risks of traveling to that specific area in South America as it is considered an area of high risk for Zika virus, which can cause severe birth defects in the fetus if the mother is infected while pregnant. The CDC also warns on its website that pregnant women should not to travel to the area I was going to. I had to then cancel my trip on December 5th and submit a request for a refund for medical reasons to Orbitz. I called several times to Orbitz and was advised to cancel the trip and open a case to request a refund for medical reasons, I also called CopaAir and they said everything should be done through Orbitz but if it was a medical case, the option of a refund was available. I submitted all the information Orbitz requested from me on Dec 9, 2017, including a letter from my health care provider, and they sent the refund request to CopaAir on my behalf. Yesterday, I received a brief email from Orbitz saying that the airline had denied my request and if I had questions, I should contact the airline directly. I am sure if I contact the airline they will tell me to contact Orbitz, as they said before. Orbitz said to me that they abide by CopaAir terms and conditions about refunds, and CopaAir said I should talk to Orbitz as I booked through them. Orbitz has given me travel credit for the full amount (almost $5000) but the tickets are not transferable and there are fees for rebooking. My family and I are relocating to Asia in 6 weeks and I will not be able to travel to South America any time soon so credit will not be any useful. I know I purchased non-refundable tickets but because of the amount, I am willing to keep trying to get anything back. Any advice on how to proceed from here would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!