If you read other blogs, you most definitely have already read this story! But, because I found this interesting for a couple of reasons. Here are the details that were given about this situation.
United Passenger with $163 Ticket Given $10,000 Voucher
Allison Preiss was holding a ticket for a flight from Washington Dulles to Austin, Texas last night. Because of a broken seat (according to Preiss) on the fully sold flight, United Airlines needed someone to offer to bump. But, thanks to the storm in that part of the country, I would imagine many people just wanted to get out and no one volunteered to bump.
This is how badly United didn’t want to give me cash: pic.twitter.com/sI7vmbeB2Q
— Allison Preiss (@allisonmpreiss) March 22, 2018
As a result, the gate agent announced that the passenger with the lowest fare would be denied boarding. Allison Preiss was that passenger. Her ticket cost about $163 (not counting the taxes and fees) so she was told she would be compensated for being involuntarily denied boarding.
According to news reports, she was offered a $2,000 voucher but she said she would rather have the cash. According to the rules about being involuntarily denied boarding, she was within her rights to get 4 times the ticket cost, so about $650. Before they gave her the check, they offered her the $10,000 voucher. And, she took it.
This $10,000 United voucher comes with the usual voucher limits (can only be used on United or United Express operated flights, must be used within a year, cannot be sold online, etc) but it is quite a haul!’
… But Why?
As I said, the rules about this is that she needed to be offered 4 times the amount of her ticket (one-way) in cash. This is the amount allowable for a delay of over 2 hours on a domestic ticket and is capped at $1,350 in cash total.
She indicated that she had wanted the cash when offered the $2,000 travel voucher. She was owed the $650 in cash – why did United give her a voucher that is $10,000 in United money? Does United really think that $650 cash is worth more than $10,000 of their travel “money?” Or did they want to make a nice sounding story to balance out how their publicity has been going lately?
In the end, I would say to not expect a $10,000 voucher if this happens to you! For Allison, happy spending! Too bad it cannot be used for Star Alliance flights as those are definitely more enjoyable than United’s own premium cabins.
HT: NBC Washington
Featured image courtesy Markus Mainka / Shutterstock.com