I recently cancelled a flight on Emirates Airlines which was booked at a reduced restricted fare in first class. The cancellation fee was $800.00. D

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Jan 22, 2016
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#1
I recently cancelled a flight on Emirates Airlines which was booked at a reduced restricted fare in first class. The cancellation fee was $800.00. Days later, I determined that first class was sold out suggesting that the space was re-sold. I understand that change and cancellation fees are listed in their “Conditions of Carriage” and I also acknowledge accepting them when purchasing the ticket. However, I believe these fees to be unconscionable. Have such fees ever been legally challenged through the courts? Airlines, hotels as well as cruise lines have similar punitive fees for changing or cancelling a reservation. If the hotel, cruise ship or airline re-sells the space they often double the revenue at the customers’ expense and at no expense to themselves. Although, I am not a lawyer, doesn’t this constitute “unjust enrichment” and wouldn’t courts frown on such inequity?
 

JVillegirl541

Verified Member
Nov 21, 2014
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#2
You cancelled your flight, why shouldn’t they then resell a seat you cancelled? I’m confused you agreed to their “restrictions”. We all have a choice to Vote with our wallet, you either agree to the terms of the product and purchase or move on to a product whose Terms you agree with!
Pretty simple JMHO of course.
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
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Dec 27, 2014
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#3
When you book under highly restricted rules, the reason the cancellation fees are so high is so you DON’T cancel. It’s a deterrent.

Didn’t you check to see what the cancellation fees would be before you canceled?

Doesn’t matter if they sell the seats or not- they don’t want to have to resell the seats.

I don’t think you would win a case because you admit you knowingly bought restricted tickets
 
Likes: JVillegirl541
Jan 22, 2016
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#4
When you book under highly restricted rules, the reason the cancellation fees are so high is so you DON’T cancel. It’s a deterrent.

Didn’t you check to see what the cancellation fees would be before you canceled?

Doesn’t matter if they sell the seats or not- they don’t want to have to resell the seats.

I don’t think you would win a case because you admit you knowingly bought restricted tickets
 

JVillegirl541

Verified Member
Nov 21, 2014
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#6
I can think of no other industry where the fees as so punitive and unconscionable. That applies to hotels, airlines and cruises.
We can’t either but they are spelled out in the details if you “click” on the Terms & Conditions you have to agree to prior to hitting Purchase.
Super expensive lesson to learn about changing anything about an airline ticket.

Curious did you purchase this ticket direct from the airline on a US site? Not from a third party or discounter?
 
Likes: Neil Maley

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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#7
As I am reading the post, Gilbert doesn't say that he didn't know about the cancellation fee, he is telling us that it was a great deal of money to cancel a tix. And he is absolutely right. The money the airlines are making in fees and penalties is astronomical. While I agree that this topic would make a good court case, Gilbert, the airline lobby (at least in the USA) is so strong that the government lets the airlines do whatever they want. There should be a $25 fee to cancel a tix 30 days or more before the flight. You do it yourself on your computer, it costs the airline nothing. But logic has never been a component of airline management ... they're out for every penny they can wring from their passengers. It's truly disgusting. There are those who say the enormous fees are to keep people from buying and re-selling tix ... but I have a difficult time accepting this as a viable reason. I'm sorry you had to cancel a first-class seat on Emirates ... that is something on my bucket list.
 
Sep 19, 2015
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#8
Last year I bought a discounted flight on Emirates during a fare sale; it was already about 60 percent lower than the usual restricted fare; I had to change the dates because of work conflict and it was $500 to do so; had I chosen a fully flexible fare, which Emirates offers, I could have changed it for free.

The more restrictions and lower cost, the higher the fee. The airlines do sell fully refundable fares; I have done that with some business trips.

It may not have been a cash sale of the seat, but an upgrade from business with miles, which is not as profitable as truly selling the seat.

I personally would rather have restricted fares be available as I do not change tickets that often.

It is a trade off, lower fare means less flexibility. Did you price out the difference between the restricted and flexible fare?

I am just looking at the price for a first class ticket to Milan on Emirates as a price comparison -- the round trip on a fare with restrictions -- it is $9,888 with a $400 change fee or refund fee; the fully flexible is $11,413 -- -- so it it may be more economical to buy the restricted fare and suffer the change and refund fees unless one changes the ticket often.
 
Likes: Neil Maley

Dwayne Coward

Administrator
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Apr 13, 2016
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#9
I can think of no other industry where the fees as so punitive and unconscionable. That applies to hotels, airlines and cruises.
If you think about it, there are a lot of examples throughout a variety of industries: gym memberships, holiday clubs, timeshares, real estate (earnest money), home improvement contracts, product purchases, warranties... They all basically have contracts that have clauses that still require some type of payment (or penalty) even if you decide later not to use the service/product.
 
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Likes: Neil Maley
Oct 13, 2015
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#10
One reason restricted rates are relatively cheap is BECAUSE they know that some people will cancel or no show and they can sell those seats/rooms again. That's baked into the price. Likewise, unrestricted rates are high because they know that the people who buy those have a good reason for doing so and have a high probability of cancelling and leaving them with a potentially empty seat. That's also baked into the price. I'd love to see flexible airfares that aren't many times more expensive than restricted but I don't expect to see it in my lifetime.
 
Jan 22, 2016
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#11
When you book under highly restricted rules, the reason the cancellation fees are so high is so you DON’T cancel. It’s a deterrent.

Didn’t you check to see what the cancellation fees would be before you canceled?

Doesn’t matter if they sell the seats or not- they don’t want to have to resell the seats.

I don’t think you would win a case because you admit you knowingly bought restricted tickets
 
Jan 22, 2016
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#12
why should the airline care if you cancel a flight and the seat is resold to another pax? It cost them nothing. Everything is done by the passengers with no agent involved in either transaction. If the seat (or hotel room or cruise cabin) cannot be re-sold, it would be lost revenue and that would be a different case.
 
Jan 22, 2016
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#13
We can’t either but they are spelled out in the details if you “click” on the Terms & Conditions you have to agree to prior to hitting Purchase.
Super expensive lesson to learn about changing anything about an airline ticket.

Curious did you purchase this ticket direct from the airline on a US site? Not from a third party or discounter?
u
 

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
#15
why should the airline care if you cancel a flight and the seat is resold to another pax? It cost them nothing. Everything is done by the passengers with no agent involved in either transaction. If the seat (or hotel room or cruise cabin) cannot be re-sold, it would be lost revenue and that would be a different case.
Gilbert, I am not disagreeing with you. I think these fees are ridiculous. However, when you buy an airline ticket, you are entering into a contract with the airline at the price YOU choose. You have a choice of buying a restrictive non-refundable ticket or a refundable ticket. You made the choice to buy the restricted ticket - had you bought the more expensive ticket, you would have been able to get a refund. You also could have canceled the ticket within 24 hours and received a full refund.

It all comes down to choice.

If you think this is expensive- buy a time share and try to get out of it after the period of recission.
 
Mar 14, 2018
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#16
why should the airline care if you cancel a flight and the seat is resold to another pax? It cost them nothing. Everything is done by the passengers with no agent involved in either transaction. If the seat (or hotel room or cruise cabin) cannot be re-sold, it would be lost revenue and that would be a different case.
They care because if there was no fee, no one would buy changeable tickets at a higher price. And if they can't sell higher priced tickets, they won't generate enough revenue to operate the flight.
 
Jan 22, 2016
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#18
Gilbert, I am not disagreeing with you. I think these fees are ridiculous. However, when you buy an airline ticket, you are entering into a contract with the airline at the price YOU choose. You have a choice of buying a restrictive non-refundable ticket or a refundable ticket. You made the choice to buy the restricted ticket - had you bought the more expensive ticket, you would have been able to get a refund. You also could have canceled the ticket within 24 hours and received a full refund.

It all comes down to choice.

If you think this is expensive- buy a time share and try to get out of it after the period of recission.
 
Jan 22, 2016
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#19
Not a good example. If you purchase a time-share, you still own it whether you want to or not. You could also re-sell it or permit someone to use it. Not so with an airline seat. Airlines will not permit a name change.