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Reservation name different than passport name

Discussion in 'Delta Air Lines' started by matthew matera, Feb 3, 2016.

  1. matthew matera

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    I am looking for reimbursement for a flight from Delta or Aeromexico. Recently, I booked a one way segment on delta.com to travel to Mexico City on 1/15/16. I made this reservation using my Skymiles and even though I booked my flight with Delta, the flight was with Delta’s partner, Aeromexico. Twenty-four hours before my trip I confirmed my passport details on the Delta website and I received no warning whatsoever that there would be a problem with my reservation. For reasons unbeknownst to me, the reservation was booked for “Matt” which is different that the name “Matthew” on my passport. I have flown with this discrepancy before, even to France with Delta in Sept. 2015 and never had an issue.

    However, when I arrived at the airport the staff at Aeromexico would not let me check in due to the discrepancy. I then called Skymiles to see if I could change the name and was told that I could not. The Skymiles Department was not helpful at all in giving me solutions to the problem. As Delta was not helpful, I then turned to the Aeromexico staff. Conveniently, the staff at Aeromexico said that my only option was to purchase a one way ticket from JFK to Mexico City for $520. Given that I had 3 individuals counting on me to arrive in a timely fashion in Mexico City, I needed to make this flight. However, I feel that I was defrauded by Delta’s partner, Aeromexico, in that they forced me under duress to buy a ticket when I should have been allowed to access the terminal with the award reservation that I had. Indeed, it is clear that Aeromexico took advantage of me by denying my check-in because in the situation that unfolded Aeromexico profited when I bought a ticket as opposed to them getting no benefit from my Skymiles reservation.

    I want the $520 reimbursed to me (or to at least get a voucher for that amount) as this was an unnecessary expense that was incurred by me simply by the fact that Aeromexico chose to deny my check-in for a scenario that has worked in the past. At the very least I should not have been allowed to enter my passport info the day before on Delta's website if it differed from my reservation.
     
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  2. technomage1

    Staff Member Advocate

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    Aeromexico is right. Whatever travel document you travel with, the reservation must match that exactly. So if your passport is "Matthew" you need to place the reservation as "Matthew". If were flying in the US, and your driver's license says "Matt" use "Matt" to make the reservation. Or get one or the other changed to be consistent.

    Once you make the reservation, the airlines can't change your name, either.

    This isn't airline policy but the TSA's, and it's been this way for years. United has the best explanation of this you can look at. https://hub.united.com/en-us/news/company-operations/pages/tsa-secure-flight-program-update.aspx

    If they let you fly before with non matching names, consider yourself lucky in those instances. This is a bit like speeding for years, then complaining when you get a ticket.

    However, if you still wish to make your claim, you may use our Company Contact list above to contact Delta and request a reimbursement. Wait a week for a response, if you don't get one, escalate to our first executive contact. Email only one executive at a time, and don't start with the CEO.
     
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  3. Michael K

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    The policies posted by TSA (not United) allow for "small differences" in the name, and even allow for verification of travellers who lost or forgot their ID (as Edward Hasbrouck recently wrote about on this site).

    Such circumstances may lead to considerable extra security scrutiny, but TSA policy states "You’ll be able to fly as long as you provide us with some information that will help us determine you are who you say you are."

    [Of course one needs a passport to enter Mexico, but that's not because of TSA.]

    @matthew matera , appeal to our Company Contacts for Aero Mexico:
    http://elliott.org/company-contacts/aeromexico/

    Email one contact at a time, starting with the lowest tier contact you haven't tried yet. If you are unhappy with their response or if they don't respond after a week, appeal to the next contact and so on.

    If you appeal all the way to the top and still don't get satisfaction, then circle back to Chris (at http://elliott.org/help/) and send him your corrrespondence showing that you've exhausted your appeals and see if he can mediate for you.

    Good luck and let us know what happens.

    Edit-- another thought is to contact your credit card provider. I don't know that this qualifies for a chargeback, but you can discuss the situation with them and see if they will go to bat for you.
     
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  4. Algebralovr

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    @matthew matera Is your Skymiles account populated with your legal name? If so, the default should have been to have your legal name on your ticket.

    If your Skymiles account is NOT populated with your legal name, I would recommend that you pursue updating your account to reflect your legal name.

    The reason I bring this up is because of an instance I had a year ago on a different airline. I had logged into my account and I was booking travel for me and another person. We both had active accounts through the airline's loyalty program. My info is entered correctly, and when I make a reservation, it auto-populates my information.

    I entered my colleagues information as he gave it to me via email, along with his loyalty number. The online system popped up with a message that the name associated with the loyalty number was different than the name I had entered. I was able to go back to that colleague and ask how his name should be listed, since he had told me Jeff rather than Jeffrey, and clarify how his name was listed on his ID. This way, a similar issue was averted.

    If your Skymiles account is correctly set up and you were logged in to purchase a ticket for yourself, and you got no similar message, perhaps this is a way for you to approach the request for a refund or credit.

    Good luck!
     
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  5. matthew matera

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    #5
  6. matthew matera

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    Thank you everyone. Several good reply points here. My first concern is that the Delta website should not allow me to check in with a name different than the reservation (but it did allow this). It should catch this discrepancy the day before when I checked in and entered my passport info; that way I could get in contact with Delta to change the name before going to the airport. Second, I was never given the opportunity to try and get through the TSA security with the discrepancy.
     
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  7. technomage1

    Staff Member Advocate

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    There are actually 2 phases to TSA security. The first is when you book your ticket and prior to printing out your boarding pass. This phase, called Secure Flight, is automatic, and your name is checked against various databases to ensure you're not a "bad guy". If Aeromexico couldn't give you a boarding pass, this is what you fell afoul of, probably (hopefully!) due to the mismatched name. This is all done by computer so this is why its important to get your name as it matches the ID you're using, in this case your passport. Also usually the foreign government, in this case Mexico, gets a copy of the passenger manifest so they can compare passports to process you in.

    The second is the phase everyone knows, having the agent check your ID vs your boarding pass and go through the line. This is where they can and are often merciful. I've had boarding passes that say LASTNAME, FIRSTMIDDLE; LASTNAME, FIRSTMIDDLEINTIAL; and LASTNAME, FIRST and that's no problem. A human in this case can easily figure out Matt = Matthew and let you through.

    I suggest you contact Delta and ask for an explanation of why they couldn't change your name when you called, as well as with your suggestion that a flag or some other notice be given to customers when their entered passport name does not match exactly their reservation name.
     
    #7
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  8. Joe Farrell

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    @matthew matera - here is my totally non-softhearted response.

    As an international traveler you are solely responsible for ensuring that your documentation allows you to travel internationally. You. alone.

    At some point in time you received a confirmation of your travel. It set forth your name as it appeared in your record. You alone have access to your passport. You alone know the name that appears on that passport. You alone are responsible to ensure that the names match. Thats it. You are responsible for what happened here.

    Your confirmation of international travel from Delta, whether it appeared by email or by reference on the screen where you checked the box that you understand the terms and conditions of travel - had this information in it. You apparently did not read it, or did not understand it - but you checked the box anyway.

    Should Delta have a name match - yes - it should. But they are not responsible.

    Should Aeromexico have a similar system. Sure. But again, they are not responsible.

    Since you have not told us what the exact discrepancy was, a middle name, a misspelling, etc, we really can only give you generic answers.

    But, unfortunately, today, you are my cranky target because you are solely responsible to ensure the names match. Have people traveled with minor discreps - yes - they have. Aeromexico seems to seriously be on a 'screw Americans' kick lately- since they been enforcing the most minor of discrepancies in order to collect more money from people.

    Would I write Delta? Yes. To get at half of the miles restored to your account. As for their refusal to help -- as I've said before . . . They. Don't Care.

    A word of warning is don't give a travel provider the ability to screw you - read and understand the terms and conditions.
     
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  9. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    If the ticket was pre-filled with your name as Matt (and apparently you were aware of this because you said you have had other tickets issued this way) this isn't the airlines fault. You need to have your account read as your passport did. This isn't anyone's fault but yours.

    You should have received a confirmation as soon as you booked the ticket and should have corrected it with Delta within 24 hours.
    You can write to Delta, but this is not their fault so if they refuse -y ou can understand why Get your name changed on your SkyMiles account.
     
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  10. jsn55

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    Matt, what name did your confirmation show?
     
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  11. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    For reasons unbeknownst to me, the reservation was booked for “Matt” which is different that the name “Matthew” on my passport. I have flown with this discrepancy before, even to France with Delta in Sept. 2015 and never had an issue.
     
    #11
  12. Flywisely

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    Who booked the award tickets? Matt did. :)
    The airlines will not fool around or change your name.
     
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  13. Little me

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    Aeromexico is Wrong.
    Once you make the reservation, the airlines can change your name discrepancy any time including during checkin.
    It is not TSA rule that you cannot. TSA rule is that when you check in all should be correct but not necesserily - TSA rule is small discrepancies (e.g. nick name vs name) are not necessary to correct.
    Didn't you notice that you can buy the ticket on spot at checkin. How is that different from changing the name on the existing ticket. TSA get s the file and checks it than.

    This isn't airline policy but the TSA's, and it's been this way for years. United has the best explanation of this you can look at. https://hub.united.com/en-us/news/company-operations/pages/tsa-secure-flight-program-update.aspx


    [/QUOTE]
     
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    Last edited: Feb 4, 2016
  14. Neil

    Neil Moderator
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    [/QUOTE]
    Little me, the writer ADMITS his name is wrong on on his Skymiles Account and that is where the name came from.
    Aeromexico did not change his name.
    You really need to read the full questions and understand what happens before you go spewing information. When the supplier is wrong we absolutely go to bat and advise our writers how to try to fix it. We know what we are talking about.

    Probably 80% of the cases here are caused by the traveler themselves and not the supplier and we try to help even the consumers who erred themselves. The suppers are not always wrong and in this case the Skymiles Account set up was the culprit.
     
    #14
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  15. Little me

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    #15
  16. Little me

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    I am terrified by the number of strong opinionated and at the same time WRONG posts.
    Let me be very specific:
    (1) this is USA - we do routinely use nick names and even no middle innitails for everyday life - and this is great. Even out Presidents use nick name, and they use their full names most of americans do not know who they are. Same applies to all of us.
    (2) Frequent flyer programs are like social media - you use the name you want and nobody should tell do otherwise.
    (3) Smart airlines use computers. The computers are there to make our lives easier. Lazy or uninformed proframmes should not be allowed to change our habits.
    (4) Smart airlines (eg. AA) have separate name for FF program name, Ticketed name and separate for the Passport data and name.
    (5) If Passport name field is not filled, the computer will use FF name to fill Name on the Ticket. That can be easily changed by you by filling in the Passport filed. The FF will not change - if smart programer was involved. On AA FF name does not change.
    (6) The Ticket name to print on the boarding pass can and will be changed if security requests it at the check-in. The only reason no-issuing airline has problems - it is because they employee poorly trained people - always ask for the supervisor who works for the airline because airport contract checkin counter employees outside USA are not trained in rules in most cases.
    (7) Of course if you hit the wall - buy the ticket and upon return to the USA demand refund for it, chargeback on the credit card (always use credit card and not debit card - best is AmEx) if no results in reasonable time sue in small claims court.
    (8) Arguments on NEY sayers fall on their face because there was no progblems from TSA when you bought the ticket "5 minutes" before the flight -- but somehow ther would be a problem if the correct name showed up on the existing ticket. As TSA is concerned if they know you FF name or your Passport name -- all is fine -- it only may require some hand adjustment for them --- because their computers are not well programmed to do it automatically.
    (9) Do not read advise from people who say that you did WRONG.
     
    #16
  17. Joe Farrell

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    Who cares if AX was wrong - they refused to change his ticket. It's obvious that they are doing everything they can to deny boarding to Americans and collect additional money - there are too many of these from AX and none from other Central American carriers.

    What is the OP going to do at the ticket counter? Argue? That's not going to get him anywhere. Could the ticket agent, if the pax was a relative or friend of the ticket agent, fix the problem? Sure they could. The reason they don't is either corporate policy or personal animosity. Or just general orneriness.

    I read your last post and wonder if you are posting to Duffelblog or the Onion . ..
     
    #17
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  18. Little me

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    Of course - there is not much sense being stuck abroad.
    AX & AmEx = American Express?
    Aeromexico=AM.
     
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  19. Michael K

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    With respect to @matthew matera 's prospects of reaching a happy outcome, FYI, our other customers with AeroMexico complaints have had a strong track record of ultimately getting satisfaction after appealing to our Company Contacts, even if the process was very long and painful:

    http://elliott.org/forum/threads/ae...-with-customer-service.1580/page-2#post-11881

    http://elliott.org/forum/threads/ill-treatment-by-aeromexico.2072/page-4#post-20479

    http://elliott.org/forum/threads/po...-and-aeromexico-response.132/page-3#post-2367

    So Matt, don't give up and if you are able to correspond with Aero Mexico in Spanish that can only help.

    Worst case, if you are ever in Sacramento, here's what one of our pre-forum customers tried -- ;)

    http://elliott.org/case-dismissed-2/an-aeromexico-refund-runaround-with-a-surprise-ending/
     
    #19
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  20. Little me

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    Little me, the writer ADMITS his name is wrong on on his Skymiles Account and that is where the name came from.
    Aeromexico did not change his name.
    You really need to read the full questions and understand what happens before you go spewing information. When the supplier is wrong we absolutely go to bat and advise our writers how to try to fix it. We know what we are talking about.

    Probably 80% of the cases here are caused by the traveler themselves and not the supplier and we try to help even the consumers who erred themselves. The suppers are not always wrong and in this case the Skymiles Account set up was the culprit.[/QUOTE]
    The writer admits that FF name is different from Passport name.
    It is not WRONG it is DIFFERENT. He did not err and the Skymiles Frequnet Flyer account is not PASSPORT.
     
    #20

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