ABC News reports the carrier allegedly tried to collect around $30,000 in change fees, after the carrier changed their flights around to arrive at one Caribbean island, and depart from another.
Family Claims Flights Shuffled Between Islands Prior to Departure
Telling hist story to ABC News, Sam Taussig claims he purchased flights for a summer family vacation from the United States to the island of St. Vincent in the Caribbean in the beginning of 2022. Over the course of the year, American sent several updates to the itinerary as schedules change. However, Taussig claims he was unaware of one major shift until right before the trip: The return departure was changed from St. Vincent to St. Lucia – a completely different island country 47 miles away.
Once Taussig noticed the change, he says he contacted American and spent over three hours on the phone trying to solve the problem. At one point, he claims the airline said they would have to split up his family across multiple flights over a week apart, coming at a price tag of around $30,000 in change fees.
“American Airlines was not very apologetic at all,” Taussig told ABC News. “They blamed me, the customer, for not catching this sooner.”
The solution they agreed upon was another flight departing from Barbados back to the United States. Taussig says his family is forced to charter a private flight from St. Vincent to Barbados in order to catch their American flight home – a change which they claim American wanted to charge $3,000 for the change.
Taussig has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Transportation, seeking compensation for the changes and booking the charter flight. A spokesperson for American told ABC News they were “concerned with the experience our customer is reporting,” and the company has reached out Taussig to discuss the issue.
Complaints Spike as Flyer Satisfaction Hits New Lows
Taussig’s story may not be unique among flyers, as the post-pandemic travel boom is leading to a host of unhappy travelers. The J.D. Power 2022 North American Airline Satisfaction Study found flyers were not pleased with changes in costs, flight crews and aircraft quality.
Source: frugal travel guy