TURKISH AIRLINES - CANCELLATION/REFUND INACTION

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Mar 21, 2019
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#1
My wife very recently had a severe accident and is restricted to a wheelchair. Her doctor recommended no travel for months.

As Star Alliance million milers, this is a big sacrifice for us NOT to travel. We were so looking forward to experiencing another airline - Turkish Airlines - from Singapore and try their new Istanbul airport and new lounge. We were even planning to do a one day walking tour.

We wrote Turkish Airlines 4 times now with our doctor letters, documents and follow-up emails requesting to cancel our May 2, 2019 flight (T6A6ZJ) to Istanbul and Rome for a family reunion. We asked that a supervisor contact our doctor. We asked that a supervisor contact us.

To date, they have not contacted our doctor to verify our request. They have not called us to discuss the matter. They have not offered to cancel and refund.
I've now spent almost 3 weeks on this quest for resolution.

Am I upset over this very poor customer relations experience?

What does it take to qualify for a medical emergency and have 2 tickets cancelled and fully refunded?

I've posted this week my displeasure on their Facebook page, my Facebook page with a few hundred travelers, my LinkedIn with a few hundred business class travelers. They have taken down my posting on the Turkish Airlines Facebook page, but still no cancellation or full refund offered.

If I do not get a satisfactory resolution by March 25, 2019 to our request for a cancellation and full refund of our 2 tickets.

This Turkish Airlines experience has been frustrating, time consuming and stressful.

Recent Turkish Airlines ads are clever. But, a true world class airline offers real customer service/communication and compassion for real life events.

Again, I welcome their executives to call our surgeon in Singapore , Dr Andrew Dutton, or me.

Landy Eng

Note- Edited by moderator to remove email
writers email and phone number.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
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www.promalvacations.com
#2
I’m very sorry about your wife’s illness and hope she has a full recovery.

Unfortunately if you had a nonrefundable ticket you need travel insurance to be refunded if you wife is ill. They offer travel insurance at the time of purchase- did you buy it? If you did you must file a claim. If you didn’t, they don’t owe you a refund. Some airlines may offer a future flight credit less a cancellation fee in these circumstances but apparently this airline may not. This is exactly what travel insurance is for.

If you didn’t buy a policy when you booked, check with the credit card you used to buy your tickets H
and see if they offer any insurance that would reimburse you.
 
Jan 6, 2015
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#3
According to their website: "Cancelations and refunds not permitted. Only taxes are refunded"

However, you can reach out to Turkish Airlines executives using the Company Contacts link at the top of this page. Politely request an exception to their refund policy.
You may also post your proposed email here if you would like us to review and comment . . .

Read this first: How to Present Your Case
 
Likes: jsn55
Sep 5, 2014
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#5
I'm sorry for your wife, but that is what insurance is for....the unexpected. When I have traveled, I've paid hundreds of dollars to insure my trip. Why should I do that if others can get reimbursed or get to postpone their trip when they chose not to insure it. That is why you buy insurance.
 

weihlac

Verified Member
Jun 30, 2017
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Maui Hawaii
#6
My wife very recently had a severe accident and is restricted to a wheelchair. Her doctor recommended no travel for months.

As Star Alliance million milers, this is a big sacrifice for us NOT to travel. We were so looking forward to experiencing another airline - Turkish Airlines - from Singapore and try their new Istanbul airport and new lounge. We were even planning to do a one day walking tour.

We wrote Turkish Airlines 4 times now with our doctor letters, documents and follow-up emails requesting to cancel our May 2, 2019 flight (T6A6ZJ) to Istanbul and Rome for a family reunion. We asked that a supervisor contact our doctor. We asked that a supervisor contact us.

To date, they have not contacted our doctor to verify our request. They have not called us to discuss the matter. They have not offered to cancel and refund.
I've now spent almost 3 weeks on this quest for resolution.

Am I upset over this very poor customer relations experience?

What does it take to qualify for a medical emergency and have 2 tickets cancelled and fully refunded?

I've posted this week my displeasure on their Facebook page, my Facebook page with a few hundred travelers, my LinkedIn with a few hundred business class travelers. They have taken down my posting on the Turkish Airlines Facebook page, but still no cancellation or full refund offered.

If I do not get a satisfactory resolution by March 25, 2019 to our request for a cancellation and full refund of our 2 tickets.

This Turkish Airlines experience has been frustrating, time consuming and stressful.

Recent Turkish Airlines ads are clever. But, a true world class airline offers real customer service/communication and compassion for real life events.

Again, I welcome their executives to call our surgeon in Singapore , Dr Andrew Dutton, or me.

Landy Eng

Note- Edited by moderator to remove email
writers email and phone number.
In exchange for an inexpensive non-refundable ticket, you received a much lower fare. Unless you purchased insurance, or have insurance through your credit card, at MOST you will get a credit less a cancelation fee, to be appled to future travel.

Insurance is designed specifically for events such as your wife suffered, not just for foreseeable events. Airlines will not, and should not, give you the benefits of insurance without purchasing same.

"What does it take to qualify for a medical emergency and have 2 tickets cancelled and fully refunded?"
You have the option on any trip to purchase a refundable ticket at a much higher price, or purchasing insurance. If you did neither, the airline, including United, will not refund your tickets. Turkish is not going to call your wife's doctor as there is nothing they will learn from such a call.
 
Last edited:
Jan 6, 2015
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#8
Insurance exists in its many forms for one reason: to cover us for the "oops". From auto to home to life to medical and more, we are faced with the need to protect ourselves and our investments separately, because the sellers of these products don't.

While many companies will grant "exceptions" on a case-by-case basis, the fact is that we bear primary responsibility for the unexpected. They may likely care very much about the injury and loss of mobility your wife has experienced. Unfortunately with this airline, international fares are flat "not refundable".

That said, you lose nothing by appealing as outlined above. If you do, please keep us posted . . .
 

jsn55

Verified Member
Dec 26, 2014
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San Francisco
#9
Landy, I am so sorry to read your story, I can really empathize with not being able to travel. I hope your wife makes a speedy recovery. Alas, my colleagues are correct and have given you the bad news. I would hold out a tiny ray of hope, however ... use our Company Contacts, compose a concise, polite letter expressing your understanding of their policies and asking for an exception to their rule. Do not ask for a refund, but instead ask for a credit towards a future flight, if your wife's condition will allow her to travel within a year. State specifics, date and flight you'd want to book if you are allowed to do so. Express great appreciation for their time and consideration. It's worth a try, we see miracles here quite often. And please do let us know what transpires. Best of luck and I hope you are both soon flying off to somewhere wonderful.
 
Likes: VoR61
Mar 23, 2015
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#10
Can I add a couple things to the sage advice of the learned professionals here? You are asking the executives of Turkish airlines to time out of their days to contact YOUR doctors and you? You should be the one initiating contact. YOU should be the one gathering whatever documentation you thing is compelling and necessary. Do you really think that they should be the ones doing this favor for you? If they, by some grace, DO elect to do you this HUGE favor, it needs to be because YOU asked VERY nicely and because YOU indicated that you realized that you do NOT deserve any special consideration but that you would REALLY appreciate this SPECIAL consideration of your circumstances. HUMBLE needs to enter your vocabulary, sir.
 
Likes: krisseye
Mar 21, 2019
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#12
UPDATE

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions and advice. While I was posting to Elliott Advocacy, I was contacted by the local Turkish Airlines sales office which asked for more time to discuss with "headquarters" and get back to me. I'm prepared to be flexible.

It's unfortunate as a consumer that we're all made to feel like we're a "David" versus a "Goliath" because the system is geared to one side with the use of the word "unrefundable" and fine print. Thank goodness for Facebook and LinkedIn people power.

I will post any resolution to this forum once I have some firm agreement.

Thank you!
 
Likes: VoR61

Neil Maley

Moderator
Staff Member
Advocate
Dec 27, 2014
16,794
15,414
113
New York
www.promalvacations.com
#13
UPDATE

Thanks to everyone for your suggestions and advice. While I was posting to Elliott Advocacy, I was contacted by the local Turkish Airlines sales office which asked for more time to discuss with "headquarters" and get back to me. I'm prepared to be flexible.

It's unfortunate as a consumer that we're all made to feel like we're a "David" versus a "Goliath" because the system is geared to one side with the use of the word "unrefundable" and fine print. Thank goodness for Facebook and LinkedIn people power.

I will post any resolution to this forum once I have some firm agreement.

Thank you!
But the system isn't geared that way - this is why they sell travel insurance.
 
Likes: krisseye