Schedule Changes

By | November 21, 2006

It has been a while since we checked in with the blogging community. Upgrade Travel’s mailbag features yet another reader question…The airline changed my schedule, what are my rights?

Airlines waive themselves of liability in the event they change your schedule. That means they don’t consider themselves responsible for secondary fallout from their change…losses caused by changes to hotel reservations, travel plans, etc. That does not mean you have no rights.

Most airlines, if the change is significant enough and you make the sufficient case, will at the least offer you your money back so you can make travel arrangements more convenient to you. They also may opt to move you to a different available flight at no cost that might be better suited to your times.

Remember, this particular area is open to negotiation. Before you call them, review their schedule…if you saved money by booking a connecting flight…ask them if they have a nonstop alternative they’ll book you on to the inconvenience of your new schedule. If you could fly into an alternate airport…in a schedule change situation, the airlines have a different set of rules than a voluntary change. You can even try to convince them to move you to the following day due to the loss of time at your vacation spot. That will often work if the route has very infrequent service.

Just remember this…you want to work with the airline, because they have no legal obligation to put you on any flight. If you become too much of a pain, they’ll just give you your money and tell you to book your own alternate arrangements, even if they cost more.

Author: Guru

Guru is the Editor of Flight Wisdom and a long time aviation enthusiast.