Update: As commenters point out, Delta only wrote that they will fight chargebacks on operated flights. If you have a chargeback on a cancelled flight, please let us know if Delta is contesting the chargeback and post the results!
I’ve made several posts about not cancelling a non-refundable flight before the day of departure and about getting a refund when your flight is cancelled.
In short I’ve advised people to:
- Call and ask for a refund for the cancelled flight based on US law, Israeli law, European law, and the contracts of carriage on most airlines. Ask for a supervisor and be prepared to HUCA (hang up, call again).
- Dispute the charge with your credit card.
- File a complaint with the US DoT or with the relevant local complaint board.
- If those options fail, you can take the airline to small claims court.
Commenters following those steps have had luck getting a refund on Frontier, Spirit, United, Delta, American, Allegiant, El Al with Chase points, Delta with Chase points, Turkish with Chase points, Air Serbia, BA, TAP, etc.
Many travel agents reached out to me to add the caveat that if people booked with a travel agent, by doing a credit card chargeback the airline will just take the funds out of the travel agent’s pockets via a debit memo, so I added that to those posts.
Clearly airlines have been seeing a lot of chargebacks, as Delta has now sent out a notice to travel agents to let them know that if their passengers did a chargeback on a flight that was cancelled, Delta will not be issuing a debit memo to the travel agent.
Delta also writes that they are fighting to have chargebacks on cancelled flights to be resolved in their favor as flights were non-refundable. That’s despite Delta’s contract of carriage stating that they will offer refunds for flights that don’t operate and despite US law requiring refunds on cancelled flights. Delta conveniently ignores that tickets are only non-refundable when Delta actually operates the flight that was sold. Otherwise they could just make a fortune selling tickets and not operating any flights.
Good thing we just bailed these guys out with tens of billions of taxpayer dollars!
Here’s a copy of the Delta memo to travel agents: