United Airlines ripped me off

In September of last year, I booked two business class tickets for my June 2020 Tauck tour of Ireland at a cost of $6000. When I saw that the tour wasn't likely to go, I postponed it to August (wishful thinking). United allowed me to change the tickets without a change fee, as was their policy at the time. What they didn't tell me on the phone, was that the new flights had a value of $4400 (it was on the new tickets that they later e-mailed me, but unfortunately I didn't notice that at the time). When my August flights got cancelled, they only refunded the $4400. I put in a refund request for the other $1600, but it was denied. Their justification is that when they waived change fee they also stopped issuing any refund or credit for lower priced tickets. So I'm out $1600 and have nothing to show for it.

FAA regulations require a full refund for cancelled flights. So I will be filing a consumer complaint with them. I'm not holding out much hope.

The moral of this story is to be very careful when rescheduling flights. Ask if they are changing the value of the ticket. If I had known that they were devaluing my tickets, I would have waited for them to cancel the flight and gotten a full refund for the original tickets.

The flight attendants always end their deplaning speech with, "We know you have a choice and we thank you for choosing United." You can bet I won't be choosing United in the future if there is another option.


  • I may be wrong and haven't flown other than Delta, but the last I heard, US airlines were ranked: Delta #1, AA #2, and United a distant #3.

    A few months ago, I found better flights for this year's XMAS Mkts, so I thought I would give Delta a call and see if I could take advantage of the COVID change policy. I asked to me changed to the new flights. Delta said they couldn't make the change, but could cancel the original tickets, re-book me on the new flights and refund the difference. Not only were the new flights better they were cheaper. :) Too bad we probably won't get to use them. :/

  • Ken - did you file a dispute with your credit card company?

    I once read an article where some airline exec laughed off the "I'll never fly xxx again." He said people have short memories and even if they do remember, they will run out of airlines to choose from if they fly regularly.

  • We have over $13K in e certificates good until mid 2022 with United plus almost 300K in frequent flier miles. I guess I am stuck using them or any Star Alliance code share airlines for a while. :/

  • That's United! worst airline ever.......

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