Senators To Airlines: Provide Refunds Or Remove Travel Credit Expiration Dates

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US airlines have received incredibly generous bailouts over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic that have been the envy of airlines across the globe.

Incredibly, tens of billions have been handed over without any conditions or givebacks to consumers. 

Senators Ed Markey and Richard Blumenthal now appear to regret that and have written a letter to all US airlines asking that they provide cash refunds for flights that passengers cancelled since the pandemic began, even if the airline operated the flight. At a minimum, they’re asking for airlines to remove expiration dates from the $10 billion of flight credits and travel vouchers that they have provided. They’re also asking airlines to reinstate credits that have already expired during the pandemic:

 

I’m not sure why they didn’t think to make this a condition of the bailout. It’s a lot harder to negotiate for something when nothing is being offered in return. But the senators could introduce legislation if the airlines refuse, and the airlines would surely prefer to avoid additional regulation of their refund policies. It’s better for airlines to temporarily lift travel voucher expiration dates than it is to have the US Congress regulate that travel vouchers can never expire.

If one airline removes expiration dates or starts offering cash refunds, we’ll likely see the rest follow.

Do you think that will happen and if so, which airline will be first?

HT: chff

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24 Comments On "Senators To Airlines: Provide Refunds Or Remove Travel Credit Expiration Dates"

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Plini

Not going to happen.

...

Air canada

Stephen

Southwest would be first but I think they already have very generous cancellation policy.

Hoping

I sure hope SW gets rid of an expiration date since I am in this exact situation with them.

Cook

Southwest funds are also only good for the original traveler, cannot be transferred or used by another individual. I’d like to see that change.

Yochai

That’s definitely another thing the senators should push for

Vera Katz

First good idea from a Democrat in a loooooong time

sammytorah

i guess the $1400 stimulus x 10 person sized jewish family k”h=$14000 wasnt a good idea???

Dave

1. Many of the stimulus legislation acts were signed by a Republican legislature and president (the most recent one was signed by Pres. Biden).
2. As far as the national debt goes, and some abuse of the payments (many Dem congressmen wanted a no ceiling, wanted to have illegals eligible, and want continuous minimum income payments)– I’m not in love with the idea (regardless if it was Pres Trump or Pres Biden).

Hippo387

Correct!

JJ1

You probably just havnt heard any other original ideas since the beginning of past 4 years.
Well the only idea republicans have are “tax cuts”, so its understandable that you are surprised that congress can do much more than tax cuts.

chaim

is this request only for the past or are they requesting for this policy to be in place going forward (at least until they officially lift the health emergency)

SA

Delta has (without any request by me) already extended to mid-2022 my Amex Platinum Card companion certificate that would have expired over the past year.

SM

I am not sure why an airline should be expected to give a cash refund when they operated the flight, but either waiving or significantly extending the expiration date on credit seems like a fair compromise.

Abe

Because I would suspect they only ran the flight totally empty in order to not refund

Emjay

I purchased 2 American Airlines Bus. tickets. Was supposed to fly today to Israel. Didn’t get Ishur in time, so had to cancel ticket.
Airline is charging me $450 each ticket!
Sent email to AA Cust. Service, and they had nothing positive to say.
Any way of getting a full refund?

Jacob

I need this, because I got shafted on the Southwest expiration date change and I missed the window to convert to points.

jacob

paid for that american airlines flight deal to israel around this month of may and now they wont refund,only flight credit because flight is leaving on time. yikes if anyone had luck getting american to refund cash tickets to tlv around this time please let me know

Michael

Elal will be first

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