It’s been a long time since I’ve paid for an airline ticket, I pretty much exclusively travel on miles. But I still try to stay on top of all of the byzantine airline policies on all tickets.
The “friendliest” US airlines have the best price drop policies and they apply with both paid and award tickets:
- Alaska gives a full airfare credit for any price drops at any time.
- Southwest gives a full airfare credit for any price drops at any time.
- JetBlue gives a full airfare credit if the price drops within 5 days of the purchase. After 5 days you will be assessed a $75 fee unless you bought a Blue Flex fare. JetBlue Mosaic members can get a credit at any time with no fees.
Other airlines charge the full change fee for a price drop, which can be $200 or more. That means you’ll only get a credit when there’s a massive price drop.
Of course if you’re within the 24 hour free cancellation period (up to 96 hours on Priceline) you can always just rebook and cancel the old reservation.
Today I learned that United has an unpublished fare drop policy as well. If your fare drops within 30 days of purchase, United will give you a voucher for the difference, less a $50 processing fee. Not all agents know about this policy, so you may need to ask for a manager or HUCA. Some agents will even waive the $50 fee, some agents will require that the amount of the voucher after the fee must be at least $50, and some agents may be willing to give a voucher even if it’s more than 30 days after purchase.
United vouchers can be merged together and used by anyone, so be sure to check the airfare daily after you make a purchase.
I’m guessing that this won’t apply to Basic Economy fares, but if you try it on a basic economy fare let us know how it goes!
Have you ever used United’s 30 day price drop policy?