Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

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VictoriaF
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Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:34 am

I have just returned from a long trip to Europe and I am not in a mood for a complex process. But I am wondering if I can get money back easily. Here is the background:

In July I flew BWI-FRA on Condor. This was the first time I used international business class because it was reasonably priced. Unfortunately, my flight was 3.5 hours late to Frankfurt and I missed my trains to France that I have booked separately on an online English-language site.
- Thomas Cook that owns Condor told me that they only re-book travel booked through them.
- Deutsche Bahn told me that my tickets were purchased via the French SNCF and they could not change them.
- SNCF (French train management) later told me to use their web site.

I have purchased another ticket to France at the FRA airport for about $60, almost the same price as what I've paid for a 2-month advanced purchase.

The amount is small and I don't want to spend too much time on recovering it. But if there is an easy way to get my money back, I'll do it. My options are:
1) Contact SNCF.
2) Fill out EU forms for the compensation for delayed flights.
3) Contact my Chase card that I used to purchase the train tickets.

Q1: If I decided to pursue this, where can I get the information about my Condor flight delay? When I asked for a note upon arrival they refused to give it to me.
Q2: If I start out by contacting Chase, what proof will they ask for?

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by researcher » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:57 am

VictoriaF wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:34 am
I have just returned from a long trip to Europe and I am not in a mood for a complex process. But I am wondering if I can get money back easily.
The amount is small and I don't want to spend too much time on recovering it. But if there is an easy way to get my money back, I'll do it. My options are:
1) Contact SNCF.
2) Fill out EU forms for the compensation for delayed flights.
3) Contact my Chase card that I used to purchase the train tickets.

Q1: If I decided to pursue this, where can I get the information about my Condor flight delay?
Q2: If I start out by contacting Chase, what proof will they ask for?
By writing this post, you've already spent more time/effort/thought than it's worth to potentially recover $60.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:01 pm

researcher wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:57 am
VictoriaF wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:34 am
I have just returned from a long trip to Europe and I am not in a mood for a complex process. But I am wondering if I can get money back easily.
The amount is small and I don't want to spend too much time on recovering it. But if there is an easy way to get my money back, I'll do it. My options are:
1) Contact SNCF.
2) Fill out EU forms for the compensation for delayed flights.
3) Contact my Chase card that I used to purchase the train tickets.

Q1: If I decided to pursue this, where can I get the information about my Condor flight delay?
Q2: If I start out by contacting Chase, what proof will they ask for?
By writing this post, you've already spent more time/effort/thought than it's worth to potentially recover $60.
Perhaps. But by writing this post, I've got the issue off my chest and will stop being bothered that I am not collecting easy money. Also, responses to my message may help others to collect greater amounts.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by TravelGeek » Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:13 pm

SNCF is not responsible for Condor's delay. Condor isn't responsible for damages resulting from their delay (you can't say "I missed a business meeting that would have earned me $1m so please reimburse me for that loss"). These are two independent transactions.

Here's what I would do:

1. File for EU 261/2004 compensation with Condor. If granted, this will more than cover the $60 loss on the train ticket. Last year I submitted a claim with them due to a downgrade from Business Class to coach, and it was granted without debate. Not sure that there is a way to get delay details. Did they not explain anything at the gate or during the flight? My gut feel is that if they had circumstances beyond their control they would have told you, so it probably was an issue they are responsible for and I would simply state "Flight XYZ from BWI to FRA was delayed by 3 1/2 hrs due to circumstances under your control. Accordingly, I request compensation under EU 261/2004 in the amount of ..."

https://www.condor.com/us/help-contact/ ... plaint.jsp

2. Review your credit card trip insurance coverage and if appropriate, file a claim with them for the ticket. The EU 261/2004 airline compensation is separate from this and doesn't compensate for the train ticket.

Your experience is a risk I often take when flying to Europe and connecting to pre-booked trains. Flexible train tickets tend to be significantly more expensive, so I don't think it's worth the extra cost if I occasionally get to eat the cost of a ticket.
Last edited by TravelGeek on Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Ron » Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:13 pm

https://www.condor.com/us/help-contact/ ... plaint.jsp

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/holi ... -2004.html

The first link is to the Condor complaint form. There is an option for flights late over three hours.

The second link is the EU delay compensation information.

BTW, my wife/me were late on a flight last month, and each received E600 ($1400 total) for our situation. See viewtopic.php?f=11&t=250954#p4062675

Good luck...

- Ron

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by jminv » Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:20 pm

Why was the flight delayed?

You can check whether your flight is eligible for compensation through airhelp for free. If it turns out you are entitled to compensation, which hinges on why the flight is delayed, they can process it for you and take 25% of total. Since they make it easy and maximize the refund would seem to meet your requirements. Plus it’ll let you know for free whether you are or not so you won’t waste any additional time if you’re not. If you’re not eligible, though, you could also try writing a email to them and maybe they’ll give you some small courtesy voucher.

I checked July 25 randomly through airhelp and that flight was delayed due to hazardous weather so ineligible for compensation. Reason why it was delayed leaving USA matters.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Bfwolf » Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:37 pm

As mentioned above you are due compensation due to EU law. As mentioned in the linked article Condor owes you 300 euros. It's too bad you weren't over 4 hours late or it would be 600 euros!

Getting the money from them may not be simple....I was delayed by a flight cancellation by Brussels Air at the end of May and am owed 600 euros but have not heard back from them for the complaint I submitted on June 19. I'm going to follow up with them soon as I think they say to allow 2 months.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Wed Aug 15, 2018 1:09 pm

Thank you, all! While I am reading the referenced links, here are some preliminary answers:
.
1. It makes more sense for me to spend time to get several hundred Euros than mere $60.
2. Airhelp wanted me to log in to my email account and I decided not to pursue it.
3. My flight was on 25-26 July, and the weather was in fact bad. But even before the bad weather became a problem, the flight was late arriving to BWI. The scheduled departure was 8:35pm. But at 5:30pm, when the weather at BWI was still fine, there was already a message that the flight will depart at 11pm.
4. The flight has departed BWI at 11:35pm, exactly 3 hours after the scheduled departure. It has touched the ground in Frankfurt at 2pm, which was 3.5 hours late from the scheduled arrival at 10:20am.

Do delays count based on the delayed departure or delayed arrival? In my case, the departure was 3 hours late and the arrival was 3.5 hours late.

The good news is that I have purchased the ticket with the CSP and used cash, not miles. The bad news, according to The Points Guy, is that to get compensated by the CSP, my delay would have to be over 12 hours.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by eddot98 » Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:03 pm

Ron wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:13 pm
https://www.condor.com/us/help-contact/ ... plaint.jsp

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/holi ... -2004.html

The first link is to the Condor complaint form. There is an option for flights late over three hours.

The second link is the EU delay compensation information.

BTW, my wife/me were late on a flight last month, and each received E600 ($1400 total) for our situation. See viewtopic.php?f=11&t=250954#p4062675

Good luck...



- Ron
The last I knew, the EU compensation payments were only for flights that originate in the EU. Flights from outside the EU to the EU are not covered by EU requirements. We received compensation for a flight from Amsterdam to Newark that was canceled and rescheduled to the next day. It was a long, drawn out process as the airline wanted to give us vouchers, etc. We held our ground and got paid.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Bfwolf » Wed Aug 15, 2018 9:58 pm

Victoria, I may be misremembering, but my recollection is that it's the time you arrive at your destination that counts.

However, I think you are going to have a hard time collecting given the weather and how close you are to being under 3 hours. But it's worth a shot.

Flights originating outside the EU going into the EU absolutely count for EU delay compensation as long as it was operated by an EU airline.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by criticalmass » Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:14 pm

What was the reason for delay? Was it within Condor’s control?

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Goal33 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:07 am

Looks like the answer is no :D
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by sleepysurf » Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:07 am

Here's the "Millennial" solution!

My 25 y/o daughter was flying from Chicago to Miami this past week, and flight was delayed 4 hrs (not sure why). She tweeted a photo of frustrated passengers waiting at the gate, tagging it with @"airline name" and #neveragain. Within a few mins, airline tweeted her back with "I'm so sorry about what happened. Please send us your reservation information, and we'll look into it." A few mins later, they emailed her a $50 credit voucher!

Gutsy, but it worked!
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by FlyAF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:13 am

Mad at the airline because of bad weather?

Seems fair.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by rich126 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:17 am

eddot98 wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:03 pm
Ron wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:13 pm
https://www.condor.com/us/help-contact/ ... plaint.jsp

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/holi ... -2004.html

The first link is to the Condor complaint form. There is an option for flights late over three hours.

The second link is the EU delay compensation information.

BTW, my wife/me were late on a flight last month, and each received E600 ($1400 total) for our situation. See viewtopic.php?f=11&t=250954#p4062675

Good luck...



- Ron
The last I knew, the EU compensation payments were only for flights that originate in the EU. Flights from outside the EU to the EU are not covered by EU requirements. We received compensation for a flight from Amsterdam to Newark that was canceled and rescheduled to the next day. It was a long, drawn out process as the airline wanted to give us vouchers, etc. We held our ground and got paid.
Simply not true. Go to the web site and read the rules.

https://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/t ... dex_en.htm

EU air passenger rights apply:

If your flight is within the EU and is operated either by an EU or a non-EU airline
If your flight arrives in the EU from outside the EU and is operated by an EU airline
If your flight departs from the EU to a non-EU country operated by an EU or a non-EU airline
If you have not already received benefits (compensation, re-routing, assistance from the airline) for flight related problems for this journey under the relevant law of a non-EU country.

EU means the 28 EU countries , including Guadeloupe, French Guiana, Martinique, Réunion Island, Mayotte, Saint-Martin (French Antilles), the Azores, Madeira and the Canary Islands as well as Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. It does not include the Faeroe Islands, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by bob60014 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:48 am

"2. Airhelp wanted me to log in to my email account and I decided not to pursue it."
CREATE A DUMMY EMAIL ACCT.

"The bad news, according to The Points Guy, is that to get compensated by the CSP, my delay would have to be over 12 hours."
MAY BE TRUE, BUT WHAT DID CHASE SAY?

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by criticalmass » Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:01 am

I would rather be delayed due to weather than have the airline chance it and see what happens. Weather can be deadly to aviators. $60 is a tiny inconvenience in lieu.

Also consider that hazardous weather that affect a flight may extend to other areas and times beyond a scheduled departure airport & time.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:25 pm

Bfwolf wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 9:58 pm
Victoria, I may be misremembering, but my recollection is that it's the time you arrive at your destination that counts.

However, I think you are going to have a hard time collecting given the weather and how close you are to being under 3 hours. But it's worth a shot.
The weather became bad a couple hours after Condor has posted the delay note. I think there was a problem with the Condor flight arriving to BWI. But the weather has given Condor a better excuse. I will file the form when I get a chance: after reviewing several sources, I think I am not eligible for any compensation.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:26 pm

criticalmass wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:14 pm
What was the reason for delay? Was it within Condor’s control?
It's hard to say. The initial information about the delay was a couple hours before the weather turned bad.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:27 pm

Goal33 wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 1:07 am
Looks like the answer is no :D
I agree. Still, this discussion could be helpful to other Bogleheads and to me in the future.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:57 pm

FlyAF wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:13 am
Mad at the airline because of bad weather?

Seems fair.
I am not mad at the airline or anyone else. I consider delays as opportunities for adventures and antifragility enhancements. This trip was particularly rich in antifragile experiences:

1. On my way to BWI there was fire in my metro car. The train was delayed by over 10 minutes in Foggy Bottom but then proceeded with passengers.
2. The express bus from Greenbelt to BWI was delayed by over 20 minutes after the driver has just left it without giving any explanations.
3. The long delay at BWI was fun. As I have mentioned, this was my first Business class flight. When I was checking in, the agent told me that I can wait at the business lounge. At the lounge, I started reviewing the printout of my Behavioral Economics presentation for Belgrade. The guy sitting at the next table asked me about it, I gave a long answer, and after a while, we had a good discussion of Ariely, Kahneman and other BE players. The German couple participating in this discussion personally knows Gerd Gigerenzer, a German psychologist critical of Kahneman.
4. At FRA I ended up buying new train tickets to France, but the price (under $60) was negligible.
5. In the train, I became friends with a German guy who made a call to my friends in France to meet me from a different train. (As I have noted in several threads, I travel without any computers or phones or other communications means.) I offered to pay him for the call, but he has definitively refused my money.
6. In the train from France back to FRA, there was a sudden announcement that the train would not stop at Mannheim, where I had to change trains, but will go to the Frankfurt train station. Another German, a young woman this time, took care of me. In Frankfurt, she took me to the place where they stamped my ticket for a free ride to FRA (without her I would have waited for over an hour in the general queue).
7. The Air Serbia flight was the smoothest of all my travel legs. To my surprise, I received a meal whereas other passenger did not. I have not paid extra for the meal and still don't understand why they gave it to me.

8. The last night in Belgrade was full of experiences. I booked a $20 hotel about a mile and a half from the airport hoping that one of the three things would work in the morning to catch my flight:
(1) the hotel would give me a ride for a couple Euros,
(2) I'll take a public bus,
(3) I'll walk.
All three options became problematic:
(1) The hotel turned out to be a cheap basic place and the best they could do was to call a taxi for 15 Euros, which is a highway robbery for such a short distance.
(2) I was told that due to the road repairs, the public bus was not running for several days.
(3) The road from the hotel to the airport is not a highway but it has no sidewalks and walking with a suitcase would not work.
I made several inquiries on the street and in nearby stores and found out that I can take bus #301 to a certain stop, cross the street and take the airport bus from that location. In the morning I did just that. The ride on bus #301 was long and took me far away from the airport. Then I waited for the airport bus for over 30 minutes and started doubting that it would ever come. But it did come, and I spent another 30 minutes traveling back. The bus has passed by my hotel and delivered me to the airport in good time. Others would be frustrated by the experience, but I considered it a cultural exploration. Due to the bus uncertainties, I came in contact with several Serbians who were invariably helpful. By taking local buses, I saw parts of Belgrade that I missed when I was staying in the center.

9. The flight on Turkish Airlines back to the U.S. has proceeded on schedule. But when I learned that the Turkish currency was very low for a dollar, I regretted that I was not stuck in Istanbul.
10. On the bus ride from IAD back home there was a German girl planning to stay at the D.C. hostel. Another woman gave her $2 for the next bus. I added $1 just in case.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:20 pm

bob60014 wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:48 am
"2. Airhelp wanted me to log in to my email account and I decided not to pursue it."
CREATE A DUMMY EMAIL ACCT.
Too much work. But I may reconsider it.
bob60014 wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:48 am
"The bad news, according to The Points Guy, is that to get compensated by the CSP, my delay would have to be over 12 hours."
MAY BE TRUE, BUT WHAT DID CHASE SAY?
I have not talked to Chase yet. At the moment, I am having more fun describing my travel debacles and triumphs than recovering money.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:22 pm

criticalmass wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:01 am
I would rather be delayed due to weather than have the airline chance it and see what happens. Weather can be deadly to aviators. $60 is a tiny inconvenience in lieu.

Also consider that hazardous weather that affect a flight may extend to other areas and times beyond a scheduled departure airport & time.
Yes, of course. I like adventures but I don't want to die in a sinking or burning airplane.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by TravelGeek » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:33 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 1:09 pm
3. My flight was on 25-26 July, and the weather was in fact bad. But even before the bad weather became a problem, the flight was late arriving to BWI. The scheduled departure was 8:35pm. But at 5:30pm, when the weather at BWI was still fine, there was already a message that the flight will depart at 11pm.
4. The flight has departed BWI at 11:35pm, exactly 3 hours after the scheduled departure. It has touched the ground in Frankfurt at 2pm, which was 3.5 hours late from the scheduled arrival at 10:20am.

Do delays count based on the delayed departure or delayed arrival? In my case, the departure was 3 hours late and the arrival was 3.5 hours late.
Arrival delay is all that matters. If they can make up for the delay in air, you are not being harmed.

See if you can find the departure and arrival times for the inbound flight (from FRA to BWI). It would be difficult for them to argue the delay was due to weather if they departed 3+ hrs late in FRA.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by TravelGeek » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:35 pm

eddot98 wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:03 pm

The last I knew, the EU compensation payments were only for flights that originate in the EU. Flights from outside the EU to the EU are not covered by EU requirements.
That is true for non-EU carriers, but Condor is an EU carrier and thus all their flights are subject to EU regulation. Another (perhaps small) reason to fly EU carriers to Europe :) (in practice it isn’t a factor in my own decision making as substantial delays are a very rare occurrence with most reputable carriers)

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by bottlecap » Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:48 pm

Being out $60 has already been well worth it if you ask me. You are no longer worrying about the rest of the money you spent on your trip!

JT

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 4:53 pm

bottlecap wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:48 pm
Being out $60 has already been well worth it if you ask me. You are no longer worrying about the rest of the money you spent on your trip!

JT
I worry more about stupid expenses than total expenses. I spent over $900 on the BWI-FRA (one-way) business flight because I wanted to arrive to Europe well rested. But I saved 15 Euros by taking a public bus from a hotel to BEL.

I have a generous travel budget and under-spend it despite of extensive travel.

Victoria
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:09 pm

TravelGeek wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:33 pm
VictoriaF wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 1:09 pm
3. My flight was on 25-26 July, and the weather was in fact bad. But even before the bad weather became a problem, the flight was late arriving to BWI. The scheduled departure was 8:35pm. But at 5:30pm, when the weather at BWI was still fine, there was already a message that the flight will depart at 11pm.
4. The flight has departed BWI at 11:35pm, exactly 3 hours after the scheduled departure. It has touched the ground in Frankfurt at 2pm, which was 3.5 hours late from the scheduled arrival at 10:20am.

Do delays count based on the delayed departure or delayed arrival? In my case, the departure was 3 hours late and the arrival was 3.5 hours late.
Arrival delay is all that matters. If they can make up for the delay in air, you are not being harmed.

See if you can find the departure and arrival times for the inbound flight (from FRA to BWI). It would be difficult for them to argue the delay was due to weather if they departed 3+ hrs late in FRA.
I decided to forego my resolution to spend as little time on this as possible and researched historical flight data. After many false leads, I found out that on the FlightAware.com site I can get free historical data for the past 3 months. The results are interesting. According to FlightAware:

On WEDNESDAY 25-JUL-2018
Condor 2074 has departed FRA at 06:25PM (2 hours 35 minutes late) and arrived to BWI 09:32PM EDT (5 hours 32 minutes late)

On WEDNESDAY 25-JUL-2018
Condor 2075 has departed BWI at 08:45PM EDT (on time)
On THURSDAY 26-JUL-2018
Condor 2075 has arrived to FRA at 02:10PM CEST (14 minutes late)

The Condor 2074 data seems accurate and shows that my flight delay was due to the late arrival of the flight from FRA rather than the weather delay.
The Condor 2075 data is wrong. The flight was scheduled to depart at 08:45PM EDT but has actually left after 11PM. The flight was scheduled to arrive to FRA at 10:25AM CEST, and "14 minutes late" is with respect to the delayed schedule.

The good news is that I now have two pieces of useful data:
1) the flight to BWI was delayed by 5h32m
2) the flight to FRA has landed at 2:10pm.

The bad news is that I am wasting too much time on it, and it's not clear if I will be able to make my case to Condor, EU, or Chase.

I sincerely hope that other Bogleheads will take advantage of my hard labor.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Kompass » Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:58 pm

Well, this Boglehead has derived enormous enjoyment from reading your tales of adventure and antifragility.

While you may not recover your $60 outlay, you have produced $60 in value for others in both information and entertainment.

:beer
The large print giveth and the fine print taketh away.

protagonist
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by protagonist » Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:59 am

I successfully got reimbursed over $400 for a cancelled flight last year via Chase Sapphire Reserve....they paid for my hotel and meals.
I recall having to submit a lot of paperwork to document the event and my expenses. I don't recall all the details. But I probably spent 2-3 hours on it, between researching what I had to do, phone calls, collecting, scanning, photographing and emailing documents, filling out form, resubmitting documents, etc.

For $60 I wouldn't waste my time, unless you figure your time is worth less than minimum wage. You have already probably spent hours researching it- probably as much time as I spent on the whole procedure!

By the way, I just received a check for 18 cents from a bank that closed my account. I don't think I will bother depositing it, even if I happen to be downtown and standing in front of my bank at the time. Time is our most valuable commodity.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:14 am

protagonist wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:59 am
I successfully got reimbursed over $400 for a cancelled flight last year via Chase Sapphire Reserve....they paid for my hotel and meals.
I recall having to submit a lot of paperwork to document the event and my expenses. I don't recall all the details.

For $60 I wouldn't waste my time, unless you figure your time is worth less than minimum wage. You have already probably spent hours researching it.

By the way, I just received a check for 18 cents from a bank that closed my account. I don't think I will bother depositing it, even if I happen to be downtown and standing in front of my bank at the time. Time is our most valuable commodity.
I started this thread with a firm resolution that $60 is not worth more than half-hour of my time. But then I got sucked into reading FlyerTalk, Chase insurance policies, and other materials. Now, I consider this entertainment rather than a financial pursuit. At this time, it seems that I can recoup from Chase $65.60 of the non-refundable train tickets by claiming "Trip Interruption." Whether I am eligible for the EU compensation depends on the stated reason for the Condor flight delay. I sent them an email yesterday.

Even if I don't collect anything, I'll have a story, and I like having stories.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by protagonist » Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:40 am

VictoriaF wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:14 am


Even if I don't collect anything, I'll have a story, and I like having stories.

Victoria
Yes, stories are priceless.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Swimmer » Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:50 am

VictoriaF wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 4:53 pm
bottlecap wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:48 pm
Being out $60 has already been well worth it if you ask me. You are no longer worrying about the rest of the money you spent on your trip!

JT
I worry more about stupid expenses than total expenses. I spent over $900 on the BWI-FRA (one-way) business flight because I wanted to arrive to Europe well rested. But I saved 15 Euros by taking a public bus from a hotel to BEL.

I have a generous travel budget and under-spend it despite of extensive travel.

Victoria
I love your post, Victoria. You remind me of me. :beer
I’m going to France in a few months and will need to take a train from CDG to Strasbourg. Would you recommend buying the train ticket in advance or purchase onsite? Haven’t taken the train in years.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:04 am

Swimmer wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:50 am
VictoriaF wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 4:53 pm
bottlecap wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 3:48 pm
Being out $60 has already been well worth it if you ask me. You are no longer worrying about the rest of the money you spent on your trip!

JT
I worry more about stupid expenses than total expenses. I spent over $900 on the BWI-FRA (one-way) business flight because I wanted to arrive to Europe well rested. But I saved 15 Euros by taking a public bus from a hotel to BEL.

I have a generous travel budget and under-spend it despite of extensive travel.

Victoria
I love your post, Victoria. You remind me of me. :beer
I’m going to France in a few months and will need to take a train from CDG to Strasbourg. Would you recommend buying the train ticket in advance or purchase onsite? Haven’t taken the train in years.
Hi Me!

I usually buy my train tickets in Europe using https://www.trainline.eu/ . The tickets are inexpensive and I decided not to worry about saving a few dollars by shopping around. However, my recent experience suggests that if my Frankfurt to Metz tickets were issued by Deutsche Banh instead of the French SNCF, I might have been able to exchange them in Frankfurt. In your case, you are arriving to France and traveling in France, and so it would be SNCF by default.

I purchased train tickets for Frankfurt-Metz on 6 June for travel on 26 July for $65.60. I purchased replacement tickets at the Frankfurt airport on 26 July for $64.48. I could have waited buying train tickets until I had arrived. However:

When I checked train schedules for my 2019 travel, I noticed that some lower priced SNCF tickets were not available on closer dates. And so you might be able to save 10-20 Euros by buying tickets early.

Enjoy!

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

Swimmer
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Swimmer » Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:14 am

Thanks, Victoria. I appreciate the quick response and advice.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:29 am

Swimmer wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:14 am
Thanks, Victoria. I appreciate the quick response and advice.
You are welcome, Swimmer,

Here is the SNCF English-language site that I am using for planning the next year trip: https://www.sncf.com/en ; and this one https://en.oui.sncf/en/ . I have not purchased from them (yet).

Victoria
Last edited by VictoriaF on Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by TravelGeek » Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:31 am

VictoriaF wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:04 am
I purchased train tickets for Frankfurt-Metz on 6 June for travel on 26 July for $65.60. I purchased replacement tickets at the Frankfurt airport on 26 July for $64.48. I could have waited buying train tickets until I had arrived. However:
One reason why I always buy my train tickets in advance is that I can reserve a seat. Trains can get crowded, and I want to be sure to have a seat. Even with a seat reservation it hasn't always worked out as planned; I remember a trip where my first train was delayed, so I missed a connection and my reserved seat on the second train went empty. I was, of course, allowed to travel on a later train, but there were no seats available.

Another reason to book ahead of time: I have often found deeply discounted first class tickets that were insignificantly more expensive than flexible 2nd class tickets when booking early.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by BeneIRA » Fri Aug 17, 2018 1:04 pm

VictoriaF wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 2:57 pm
FlyAF wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:13 am
Mad at the airline because of bad weather?

Seems fair.
I am not mad at the airline or anyone else. I consider delays as opportunities for adventures and antifragility enhancements. This trip was particularly rich in antifragile experiences:

1. On my way to BWI there was fire in my metro car. The train was delayed by over 10 minutes in Foggy Bottom but then proceeded with passengers.

Victoria
I love this story! It made my day. Thank you for sharing.

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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by VictoriaF » Thu Aug 30, 2018 7:40 am

UPDATE

I have sent email to Condor's Customer Service and to Condor's Customer Assistance asking for the reason for the flight delay. Additionally I have filled a form on Condor's web site. One of them has responded two days later:
"In the service center we don't receive the actual reason why a flight is canceled or delayed, we only get notify about the change. We are very sure of the fact that the flight was delayed due to serious issues."
(It's not clear which department has responded because the response came from a German email address.)

I had two possible reasons for the delay:
1. The Condor airplane was late to arrive to BWI from FRA.
2. Thunderstorm at BWI.

The 1st reason would qualify me for compensation by Condor according to the European rules.
The 2nd reason would dis-qualify me from the European-rules compensation but would be grounds for filing a "Trip Interruption" claim for $60 with Chase Sapphire Preferred (CSP) that I used to buy the Condor flights.

I found online the record of the thunderstorm and decided to take the CSP insurance route. I filed a claim to which I have attached the records I have collected on the web of the actual time of my flight landing in FRA 3.5 hours later than scheduled and weather reports. Five days later I received a response from the CSP insurance examiner asking for information to be provided by Condor:
(a) reason for the flight delay
(b) any compensation I have received or expect to receive from Condor.

I decided not to pursue it further because it would be difficult to receive the required information from Condor and I've already done all relatively easy stuff.

And so it was to my great surprise that today I've received an email from Condor stating that they will compensate me for $353 on the basis of the European law EC-VO 261/2004.

I have several thoughts:
1. After reading about travel insurance, I realized that it's very important to get the reason for a flight delay, in writing, while you are still at the airport. Bloggers call it "Military Excuse" and you do not need to be in the military to request it.
2. It seems that a simple email or web request asking for the reason for the flight delay has triggered the compensation.
3. I wonder if the fact that I was flying Business and paid for my ticket directly to the airline in cash rather than points or miles made any difference.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

Bobby Storke
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Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

Post by Bobby Storke » Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:20 am

I don't think anyone has mentioned it yet but apart from compensation for your delay you should also be eligible for a refund for any food and drinks that you purchased while waiting for the connecting flight.

In fact, even if for some reason Condor decide to turn down your claim for compensation (I will get to that in a bit), you should still be able to get a refund for food and drinks because the latter is not conditional upon extraordinary circumstances i.e. it doesn't matter what the reason for the delay was, the airline is still required to help you out. From what I remember from my case a few months ago, the only really important thing is that you keep your receipts. (Yes, I just double-checked on that. Apparently bank statements won't do but receipts are widely accepted by airlines as proof of your expenditures. SOURCE: https://skyrefund.com/en/blog/right-to- ... -and-hotel)

As for Condor, I have tried claiming on my own with them (I am European and I travel frequently with them) but they are a nightmare when it comes to paying out compensation. I remember even reading about how avoidant in that respect they are in the blog of one of the European claim agencies-- apparently even they struggle with Condor. Someone mentioned airhelp above and I've heard good reviews but also that because they are by far the most in-demand claim agency, they can afford to just turn down people (i.e. tell them that a claim was rejected by the airline and that's the end of it, which is simply not true). I used SkyRefund once (they run the website mentioned above) and they did a really good job and were very quick in processing my claim (I was flying with Lufthansa though, so I would recommend that you consider them. Their website is a little anti-climactic but I thought they were strong on the actual claiming side of things. Refund.me is another option but they charge a higher fee (~30% of the compensation if I remember correctly).

Sorry for my broken English and all of the parentheses used. Hope you are able to receive your compensation.
Best,
Bobby

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