AA cancelled flight - results.

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Myopic squirrel
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AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Myopic squirrel »

AA emailed that our flight from PHL to MIA was cancelled, and we were now on a later flight that gave us 50 minutes to connect to our flight to Antigua. We're using miles, which before the cancellation was enough for all 4 legs of the trip - PHL - MIA - ANU & reverse return sequence. Called AA re: the short connecting time & having suffered previous MIA connections, expressed my concern to AA, who said "50 minutes is the legal time allowed for connections. And if we missed the connection AA would put us on the next flight". At that point, having been on the phone for over an hour (AA page kept "taking flight") & approaching 11 PM we cancelled everything to get miles back & start over. Turns out the next flight leaves MIA @ 11:35A ,arriving ANU 24hrs 52 minutes later via JFK or LGA. Was unable to find an airline leaving PHL in time for the 10:35A ANU flight. Sooo: 1. now arrive MIA night before 2. since different days/separate flights, not enough AA miles, so $$s for that flight (and AA graciously offered me the opportunity to buy miles) 3. hotel $$ 4. had reserved a home, so lost 1 vaca day AND 4. $80 to make the ticket change. Currently researching if I have any redress, but most significant what I've found so far, as of 1/22/'19 the AA Guide for the Miami Airport states the minimum connection time is at least 60 minutes before scheduled departure for flights to or from airports outside the United States. IF anyone has suffered this type of inconvenience (after all it is a 1st World Problem) and had success v. AA, greatly appreciate your help! Thank you in advance.
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willthrill81
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by willthrill81 »

We got AA credit cards last year to get the bonus miles and so did a number of our family members, but we'll avoid AA going forward if we can. In the majority of cases, they have significantly changed flight times, usually on the order of eight hours but sometimes even more, on nearly every flight we've booked with them. They also seem notorious for canceling flights.

I hope that they'll do something to reimburse you for your expense and trouble, but I don't think that you should hold your breath.
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Broken Man 1999
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Broken Man 1999 »

Your last bolded statement is concerning international flights, but your flights seem to be all domestic flights. I wouldn't think the 60 minute rules would apply???

Broken Man 1999
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quantAndHold
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by quantAndHold »

Broken Man 1999 wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:00 pm Your last bolded statement is concerning international flights, but your flights seem to be all domestic flights. I wouldn't think the 60 minute rules would apply???

Broken Man 1999
They're going to Antigua.
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Broken Man 1999
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Broken Man 1999 »

Ah, my mistake. Never mind!

Broken Man 1999
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quantAndHold
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by quantAndHold »

We had some luck in a similar situation with United, by writing a letter to the CEO. Explained that United changed our reservations so that we "only" had a 2 hour connection in Newark, that 95% of flights on the Lima to Newark route were at least 45 minutes late, and that, indeed, we missed the connection, then had to wait in cold storage in a Comfort Inn in Newark for 24 hours for our rebooked flight. I demanded whatever the penalty was for the longest flight delay, which was something like $1500, IIRC. They responded by claiming the delay wasn't their fault (which was completely disingenuous), so we weren't entitled to anything, but they gave us $1200 in "courtesy" vouchers anyway.

I still wasn't happy, and other than using the vouchers, we haven't flown United since. But it was $1200 that we wouldn't have got otherwise.
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velociraptor9
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by velociraptor9 »

Do you have status with AA? If so, they may throw you a bone, but probably won't word it as compensation. If you have status, maybe they'll let you rebook the new flight for the same number of miles, but I wouldn't count on it. Sounds like you voluntarily decided to cancel the flight because of the risk that it may not work out - you don't have much of a leg to stand on here.

If the connection time on the new flight is illegal, the recourse you have is to be rebooked on a different available flight, or cancel the flight and have the miles redeposited for no fee.

If you paid the taxes and fees or costs for some other part of your travel with a credit card that offers trip interruption (or similar) insurance, you may be able to get costs for nonrefundable expenses reimbursed.
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Watty
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Watty »

Myopic squirrel wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:52 pm At that point, having been on the phone for over an hour (AA page kept "taking flight") & approaching 11 PM we cancelled everything to get miles back & start over.
It might have been a mistake to cancel the flight before having a good alternative.

When you are trying to find an alternative to a flight they cancelled the clerk or their supervisor might have had some discretion in approving alternate flights that might not normally be available with frequent flyer miles. Once you agreed to cancel the original ticket you lost any leverage you would have had with them.

50 minutes is a tight connection but not impossible and they might have even booked you on a different airline if you missed a connection that was too short.

You might want to save your AA miles for another trip and pay cash to fly on some other airlines.
Last edited by Watty on Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Trism
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Trism »

You canceled an itinerary with a reasonable connection time and didn't have a better backup plan. Sorry to say, but your pain is self-inflicted.
dbr
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by dbr »

The MCT for domestic to international on AA at Miami is 45 minutes and 40 minutes domestic to domestic: https://www.flyertalk.com/forum/america ... n-etc.html or https://flybook.biz/forum/american-airl ... tc-36.html

You misread the section of the guide showing 60 minutes for check in cut-off, but that is not the section about connecting times.

Edit: My reference document may be out of date, but I think it is true that checkin is 60min and connection 45min.

Normally if you proactively change your plans rather that having the airline agree to making the change for you by rebooking a missed flight, etc. they are not going to cover the increased cost of travel. They will never cover collateral costs such as missed nights in hotels.

What you can do is email customer service and hope for some courtesy compensation, but I would not count on much, maybe a few thousand miles in your account or some vouchers.
Last edited by dbr on Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Regattamom
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Regattamom »

Trism wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:58 pm You canceled an itinerary with a reasonable connection time and didn't have a better backup plan. Sorry to say, but your pain is self-inflicted.
+1
I agree with Trism. However, I try to avoid AA like the plague.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

Did you ever find out what gates were for arrival and departure in Miami? Not PHL, but from BOS, we've flown through Miami many times and the BOS arrival gate has always been literally across the aisle from the AUA departure gate, same on return. So only a few minute transfer time would be more than enough for us and the kids. But indeed, if you have to go long distances at MIA between gates, it could be a disaster.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by letsgobobby »

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Last edited by letsgobobby on Thu Apr 18, 2019 1:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
Scotttheking
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Scotttheking »

letsgobobby wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:18 pm
Trism wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:58 pm You canceled an itinerary with a reasonable connection time and didn't have a better backup plan. Sorry to say, but your pain is self-inflicted.
I agree, OP overreacted. 50 min connections are reasonable in most cases. AA owes him nothing.
This. You could have asked for a reasonable itinerary change, but chose to cancel and start over at whatever new price you found.
MikeG62
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by MikeG62 »

This is a reason my DW and I don’t do connecting flights. We are willing to use a number of different departing airports (even if it means a much longer drive from/to our home) to ensure we can get a non-stop flight.

We had a flight booked to Grenada with Delta for this past January. Got a message from them over the summer that our flight was eliminated and they were offering a connecting flight through Atlanta. I declined and asked for a refund. Was able to get a JetBlue non-stop flight for that trip (which was previously not available when I booked the original itinerary). If I could not have gotten a non-stop flight I would very likely have changed that trip.
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Nate79
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Nate79 »

You shouldn't have cancelled. Maybe ask for a few AA miles for your trouble.
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Myopic squirrel
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Myopic squirrel »

Appreciate all your feedback - points duly noted - especially re: cancelling. When I asked if we should cancel & start over since we didn't have enough points for the extra day's flight, AA declined to answer. When we asked if we couldn't connect to the original ANU flight could we be guaranteed seats on the next available flight, the answer was "no". And while I should have asked for a "reasonable itinerary" since she said we'd have to go thru JFK on the next available flight arriving almost 25 hours later, we were locked into the Antigua house rental - these were the only dates we could get based on our availability. Exasperated, said "forget it". As I said - A 1st World Problem. When the wheels fall of the wagon for somebody planning 10 days in Antigua, it certainly doesn't generate any sympathy. IF this is the biggest problem I have in 2019, it's going to be a GREAT year!
UpperNwGuy
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by UpperNwGuy »

I have connected from domestic to international AA flights at MIA in 45 minutes or less on multiple occasions. Did it cause me stress? Absolutely. But was it possible? Indeed it was.
jcchen
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by jcchen »

what are the reason for flight cancellation? eg, if weather, you have no recourse. you can change your dates of travel w/o penalty. If mechanical failure, it is AA's fault so you can get some miles or compensation.
Trism
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Trism »

Myopic squirrel wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:19 pm When the wheels fall of the wagon for somebody planning 10 days in Antigua, it certainly doesn't generate any sympathy.
My comments were merely practical, and independent of the purpose of your trip or your destination.

There are only a few places further down on our list of desirable vacation spots than the Caribbean (Yemen would be one, for different reasons), but thankfully tastes vary widely on this or we'd all end up in one place.

I hope this works out whatever you decide to do.
Last edited by Trism on Fri Feb 08, 2019 6:57 am, edited 1 time in total.
FederalFIRE
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by FederalFIRE »

Trism wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:58 pm You canceled an itinerary with a reasonable connection time and didn't have a better backup plan. Sorry to say, but your pain is self-inflicted.
This is definitely correct. Had you gone to MIA and missed your connection you would have had some leverage, but by cancelling you removed pretty much all of it. In the future, if you have locked in lodging, your better off dealing with the delays and then trying to recoup your lost cost for the first night, etc.

I fly AA and OneWorld partners several times monthly - lots of long hauls and shorter jumps around Europe - and am Exec. Platinum. I can tell you from 10 years of doing this regularly that it almost never pays to cancel and re-book on your own. Always try to force their hand based on the itinerary you had. They can almost always do something, and if they can't, you can usually get compensation.
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SquawkIdent
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by SquawkIdent »

MikeG62 wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:59 pm This is a reason my DW and I don’t do connecting flights. We are willing to use a number of different departing airports (even if it means a much longer drive from/to our home) to ensure we can get a non-stop flight.

We had a flight booked to Grenada with Delta for this past January. Got a message from them over the summer that our flight was eliminated and they were offering a connecting flight through Atlanta. I declined and asked for a refund. Was able to get a JetBlue non-stop flight for that trip (which was previously not available when I booked the original itinerary). If I could not have gotten a non-stop flight I would very likely have changed that trip.
+1
Jimmie
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Jimmie »

MikeG62 wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 7:59 pm This is a reason my DW and I don’t do connecting flights. We are willing to use a number of different departing airports (even if it means a much longer drive from/to our home) to ensure we can get a non-stop flight.
Good strategy for you and your DW and perhaps a lot of others, but that's easy since, according to your profile, you live in New Jersey.

Impossible (or impractical) for most others who don't live near NY, LA, Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, and a few other big hub cities not listed.
sophie1
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by sophie1 »

Gates are subject to change, but checking gate/terminal locations to gauge transit time is a good idea.

I probably would have a) avoided checking luggage, and b) paid for an upgrade to an economy plus aisle seat in the front of the plane. In the worst case, you get a free hotel room for a night in Miami. Going for a non-business related vacation trip to a tropical area means you can easily go with just a carry-on, or at least take one with enough for a few days in case you make the connection but your checked luggage doesn't.

However, this is exactly why I prefer staycations. Dealing with airline shenanigans is hardly fun & relaxing, and it's what you'll remember most about the trip unfortunately.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by cherijoh »

Myopic squirrel wrote: Thu Feb 07, 2019 5:52 pm AA emailed that our flight from PHL to MIA was cancelled, and we were now on a later flight that gave us 50 minutes to connect to our flight to Antigua. We're using miles, which before the cancellation was enough for all 4 legs of the trip - PHL - MIA - ANU & reverse return sequence. Called AA re: the short connecting time & having suffered previous MIA connections, expressed my concern to AA, who said "50 minutes is the legal time allowed for connections. And if we missed the connection AA would put us on the next flight". At that point, having been on the phone for over an hour (AA page kept "taking flight") & approaching 11 PM we cancelled everything to get miles back & start over. Turns out the next flight leaves MIA @ 11:35A ,arriving ANU 24hrs 52 minutes later via JFK or LGA. Was unable to find an airline leaving PHL in time for the 10:35A ANU flight. Sooo: 1. now arrive MIA night before 2. since different days/separate flights, not enough AA miles, so $$s for that flight (and AA graciously offered me the opportunity to buy miles) 3. hotel $$ 4. had reserved a home, so lost 1 vaca day AND 4. $80 to make the ticket change. Currently researching if I have any redress, but most significant what I've found so far, as of 1/22/'19 the AA Guide for the Miami Airport states the minimum connection time is at least 60 minutes before scheduled departure for flights to or from airports outside the United States. IF anyone has suffered this type of inconvenience (after all it is a 1st World Problem) and had success v. AA, greatly appreciate your help! Thank you in advance.
I had Continental change a flight I was connecting to out of Newark that reduced the connection time from ~1 hr and 20 minutes to just over the minimum legal connection time. This route had mostly regional jets, so if we had missed our connection there was a reasonable chance we wouldn't have been able to get on any of the other flights that day. When I called, Continental rebooked us without any change in cost or rebooking fee. I don't recall whether the new flight was actually still available at the same price (e.g., just waived rebooking fee) or whether we also got a break on the ticket price too. But I worked directly with the airline and didn't do anything on my own. And of course it wasn't a ticket using miles.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by sergio »

sophie1 wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:57 am However, this is exactly why I prefer staycations. Dealing with airline shenanigans is hardly fun & relaxing, and it's what you'll remember most about the trip unfortunately.
How often does this happen that you've given up on traveling for pleasure? I fly quite a bit and maybe 1 out of every 8 flights is delayed by a non trivial amount and 1 in 50 trips is unpleasant because of a cancelation or missed connection.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by cherijoh »

sophie1 wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:57 am Gates are subject to change, but checking gate/terminal locations to gauge transit time is a good idea.

I probably would have a) avoided checking luggage, and b) paid for an upgrade to an economy plus aisle seat in the front of the plane. In the worst case, you get a free hotel room for a night in Miami. Going for a non-business related vacation trip to a tropical area means you can easily go with just a carry-on, or at least take one with enough for a few days in case you make the connection but your checked luggage doesn't.
That's exactly what I did last summer when I had a 1 hr 50 minute connection through JFK to europe. I was in row 7 with my economy plus ticket and had carry-on only. Because of delays on the tarmac in Charlotte, we had delays in JFK (because they had given away our original gate and they needed to find another open one). Fortunately, by the luck of the draw, the new gate was closer to my departing gate than the original one. But by the time I hit the restroom, they were minutes away from boarding my ticket class on the connecting flight. That is closer than I like to shave it. I'm pretty sure if I had stuck with my original row 28 seat I might have missed the flight.

But anyone with the legal minimum connection time was out of luck since we docked at the gate over an hour after the scheduled arrival time.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Jimmie »

sergio wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:18 am
sophie1 wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:57 am However, this is exactly why I prefer staycations. Dealing with airline shenanigans is hardly fun & relaxing, and it's what you'll remember most about the trip unfortunately.
How often does this happen that you've given up on traveling for pleasure? I fly quite a bit and maybe 1 out of every 8 flights is delayed by a non trivial amount and 1 in 50 trips is unpleasant because of a cancelation or missed connection.
I fly a lot and agree to a point. A disproportionate amount of my leisure travel has been changed by the airline when I use miles compared to paying out of pocket. Rarely happens when I do pay out of pocket. My methods of avoidance are to break up the legs and stay overnight in a nice hub city and connect in the morning. That does cost more miles, but the choices with miles are usually not great anyway. Another way is to save my miles for only direct flights, but since I don't live close to a major airport, that is not always a great option, so I will shop around for low fares.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by FederalFIRE »

sergio wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:18 am
sophie1 wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 8:57 am However, this is exactly why I prefer staycations. Dealing with airline shenanigans is hardly fun & relaxing, and it's what you'll remember most about the trip unfortunately.
How often does this happen that you've given up on traveling for pleasure? I fly quite a bit and maybe 1 out of every 8 flights is delayed by a non trivial amount and 1 in 50 trips is unpleasant because of a cancelation or missed connection.
Agreed. Last year I took 45 flights on AA - 2 were bad enough to remember details. I ended up getting to my destination only 4 hours late on one trip, and ended up spending an unexpected night at an airport hotel on the other. Besides that I'm sure I had a few minor delays, but not enough to remember. This is a normal year for me in the past 10 years with roughly 50 flights/year and I would estimate 1-2 bad instances per year. Considering my commute to the office is double length due to traffic about once per week (20%), I figure less than 10% on something as complicated as air travel isn't too bad.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by dbr »

Jimmie wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 9:31 am
I fly a lot and agree to a point. A disproportionate amount of my leisure travel has been changed by the airline when I use miles compared to paying out of pocket. Rarely happens when I do pay out of pocket. My methods of avoidance are to break up the legs and stay overnight in a nice hub city and connect in the morning. That does cost more miles, but the choices with miles are usually not great anyway. Another way is to save my miles for only direct flights, but since I don't live close to a major airport, that is not always a great option, so I will shop around for low fares.
Those ideas are useful, along with checking on the reliability history of certain flights (late and cancelled), using routes with multiple flights a day available, leaving plenty of time to connect, etc. And then, sometimes everything just goes wrong.

In the case of truly inflexible plans such as cruises, really important events, etc. taking wide leeway with Plans B, C, and D to deal with things is indicated.
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by Sandi_k »

When we travel to the Caribbean, we take a direct flight to either MIA or SJU. Then we stay overnight, and take a mid-morning flight out, which gets us to the island by lunchtime. Then we can get transfers, luggage, provisioning, etc. done during daylight hours, and with a lot less stress.

The bucket sites don't like to do that, so I go to Orbitz first, and look at all the direct flights to MIA or SJU first. Then direct flights from MIA or SJU the next day. And then I call the airline, and book directly. Given that AA has such a stranglehold on the Caribbean routes, this works pretty well.

I've been doing it this way since 2006, when a travel agent booked us from SFO to JFK, transferred us in another terminal (such that we had to exit, and go through post-9/11 security again), and then flew from JFK to BVI. We almost didn't make the flight, and we spent an extra 5 hours in the air. Never again.
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willthrill81
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Re: AA cancelled flight - results.

Post by willthrill81 »

FederalFIRE wrote: Fri Feb 08, 2019 5:13 amI can tell you from 10 years of doing this regularly that it almost never pays to cancel and re-book on your own. Always try to force their hand based on the itinerary you had. They can almost always do something, and if they can't, you can usually get compensation.
+1

It's far easier to convince a business to compensate you for a problem that's occurred than to compensate you for a problem that never occurred.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings
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