I’m becoming quite au fait with cancellation compensation these days. For the second time this year on an overseas trip, I’ve had to contact the airline to get some kind of money back due to flights not going when they’re supposed to.
There’s not much that can be done about it when this kind of thing occurs. This time it was much less stressful than last time, so perhaps I am getting used to it.
I was scheduled to fly from Cleveland to Chicago on American Airlines, connecting onto Aer Lingus Chicago to Dublin. This was a single ticket, originally issued by British Airways. Everything was on time and I was at the gate when it was announced the pilots had found a technical issue that needed attention from maintenance. Cue a rolling delay.
Soon, everyone was advised to telephone AA and rebook. Since this would have been an international call for me, I elected to have the gate agent process mine. This resulted in new flights departing the following day, meaning I would arrive in Dublin about 19 hours late.
Due to pure luck, I was able to crash at a friends place for the night, saving me what would have been an extortionate hotel fee. My total expenses came to $101.69, which were an Uber to and from the airport, plus some food for dinner. Once I got back to Ireland, I submitted a claim with the airline.
Happily they came back quickly enough and I was offered a $200 trip credit for future use. That will be useful, but it really means my total cancellation compensation was just $99. It doesn’t seem like much when I had a 19 hour delay, does it?
Had I been flying on a European carrier, they would have been on the hook for EC261 compensation for the delay. It is a bit of a grey area though as I was connecting onto Aer Lingus, but it was not the fault of the Irish airline that AA made me miss that service.
Not being a regular in the world of receiving reimbursement for flight disruption, I have no idea whether the $200 credit is appropriate or not. Clearly as a non-AA oneworld Emerald frequent flyer, I was not going to receive any miles, which is completely fine with me.
I would be curious as to other people’s experience in receiving cancellation compensation from American Airlines. Was I offered enough? Too little? Too much? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.