ASK LUCKY (and each other)


Have a travel related question? Post it here, and I’ll do my best to answer it as quickly as possible.

Anyone can post a question, but you'll get the most benefit from registering to join our forum. You'll be able to see when your question is answered, and like comments from other users.

This space is intended to be more of a community as well, so feel free to jump in and share tips!

Thanks for reading!

Best,
Ben

United Cancelled Award Flight-Rebooking Options

Discussion in 'questions. answers. conversations.' started by Dbmcubs21, Oct 18, 2017.

  1. Dbmcubs21

    Dbmcubs21 New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    Todd H's scenario has me hoping that some of you more experienced travelers can be helpful to my situation.
    My wife and I have been planning a 3 week trip to Europe beginning in May 2018 and spanning to mid June 2018. I spent days and weeks over a multiple month/year time frame to acquire the knowledge (and points/miles) to book this trip. Finally when the time came and United opened up their Summer 2018 scheduling, I scoured the possibilities for the perfect routing/timing for our trip with Saver Business Award space for two.
    Our original schedule departed at 3:30 PM Central Time and arrived in London at 2PM London Time (Roughly 16 hrs of travel/layover with stops in Chicago and Shannon). I booked everything in business class for our first international trip (other than Cancun).
    This week, United cancelled the Chicago--> Shannon route for Summer 2018. They did find us alternate routing which includes an extra stop in Newark before heading to Shannon and onto London. However, to make this flight work they rebooked our departing flight from Evansville to the 6:30 AM departure. This makes our total travel/layover time over 25hrs!!! Not an ideal way to start a busy 3 week itinerary.
    There are other (better) route options available for our departure date, but none of them have Saver Business award space available. Do I have recourse action available with United? Is there a possibility I can get booked on better routing,possibly even the Chi-->London direct flight? Thanks for any advice on how to approach this!
     
    #1
  2. Gaurav

    Gaurav Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,836
    Likes Received:
    1,653
    I would identify a better routing comparable to your old routing and call UA and ask for space to be opened up. Airlines have much more flexibility on their own metal than they do with partners. This may require a few calls and requests to be escalated to a supervisor but you should be able to find someone to help you. Remember to be polite and respectful. If a rep puts in negative comments on your reservation your task just gets a whole lot harder.
     
    #2
    No Name likes this.
  3. Gia

    Gia Active Member

    Messages:
    205
    Likes Received:
    154
    I don’t have experience with United rewards but I’ve similar experience with AA reward flights. In my case, the new flight arrangements have always involved arriving at destination much later than my original itinerary and AA, in each instance, re-booked me on flights that met my original arrival time within an hour. I can’t say for your situation because it appears that your travel time has increased at the front end. I often fly 25 hours going to the EU from California and it actually allows me to sleep better (in Business Class) on the flight leaving me more refreshed on arrival than the shorter flights. So, if things don’t work out for a tighter flight plan, I wouldn’t abandon your current itinerary. Call United and see what they can do for you and good luck on your trip!
     
    #3
    No Name likes this.
  4. Daniel B

    Daniel B Active Member

    Messages:
    181
    Likes Received:
    73
    I think that the best option is to call them even REPEATEDLY until someone helps you. I actually had much better luck with United phone agents rebooking me when for whatever reasons our flights were changed. We all have different ways of dealing with phone agents, but what always worked for me were:
    1. I am always polite, but do sound desperate on the phone, pleading them to help me because of the difficult situation I have been put in. Sometimes you bring up work conflict, like let's say: "I finish my work at 6am, therefore I cannot get to the airport to take the early morning flight". I always say that I would be so grateful if he/she could help me, because I do not know what to do.
    2. If they say there is nothing they can do, I politely thank them and hang up, only to call back again (and again and again). There is a big difference between agents when it comes to their knowledge AND willingness to help.
    3. In a situation like this, we have to be flexible. For me, if it means an extra stop in my itinerary, so be it. It is better to spend 3-4 more hours travelling, then having my saver award reservation cancelled.
    Hopefully, a competent and helpful agent will find an acceptable routing for you.
     
    #4
    No Name likes this.
  5. Dbmcubs21

    Dbmcubs21 New Member

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    3
    Update: I spent a good chunk of my afternoon on the phone with United yesterday and was able to confirm new routing from Chicago to London. We actually ended up with better routing than we started with, knocking approx. 2.5 hours of travel time off while also getting a direct flight from the States to London. Score this a +1 for United customer service agent.
     
    #5
    rickyw, Gaurav and Gia like this.