Cancelling a flight does not seem to cancel check in if you've already checked in before you cancel | Australian Frequent Flyer
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Cancelling a flight does not seem to cancel check in if you've already checked in before you cancel

Seat0B

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Sep 20, 2018
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58
So, one recent Thursday night, I got a phone call that my mother-in-law in Queensland was very ill, and likely to die. I decided to make a short notice J class paid booking to travel from CBR-BNE on an early morning flight departing at 0650 the next day (Friday). As the booking was made on line the night before the travel, I was presented with an option to check in immediately, which I took. One less thing to do in the morning, I reasoned, as I was going to be busy tying up loose ends at work to get away.

Next phone call later that night was that my M-I-L had rallied, so I decided to cancel the flight, sort out my work and go up on the weekend. I made an on-line cancellation, no issues at all, and went to bed very late after doing a lot of work, and planning/packing for the weekend trip. I even checked on the web site that the booking was correctly cancelled before I went to bed, and it was. However, I was woken by an rather aggressive phone call at 0635 the next morning by a Qantas staffer demanding to know "where are you and can you just hurry up and board your flight; you are holding everyone up." I explained I had cancelled the flight the previous night, and got a huffy "so you're not flying then?" . I said "no, it's pretty hard to fly on a cancelled ticket". They then huffed and puffed a bit more and hung up.

Unfortunately, the next phone call I got was later that same morning to say that M-I-L had in fact passed away (and I would not have made it there anyway, even if I took the original flight, which was a small comfort in the circumstances). So now I needed to get another new short notice booking to fly up same day, but the web site would not let me book on line. I called the priority line (I'm a WP) and got answered quickly. I explained, and they said I had been marked as a no show, that's why I couldn't book again on the same day on line. By now I was a bit upset, and the call taker was amazing - just the right level of sympathy and get it done attitude, and I was very quickly re-booked and on my way, and no phone booking fee. Also a big shout out to flight attendant Monica on QF 1546 that day for her warm and kind service to a tired and over-stressed passenger when I finally got on board.

However, in the last few days, I have started to wonder about a couple of things:
1. as I cancelled the flight, why was the check in not also automatically cancelled?
2. if being checked in required more intervention before I could cancel the ticket, why did the web site actually allow me to cancel, and not require me to phone to make the cancellation?
3. the conditions of my fare allowed a full refund, even after no-show (and I dispute that I was a no show anyway) , so why would I be locked out from making another booking for exercising this right associated with my fare?

Any one else had this happen to them?
 

sjk

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Mar 9, 2018
Messages
228
Sorry for your loss.

A lot of it comes down to how hard it is for the airline’s systems to deal with things happening during the last few (say 10-20) hours before a flight, and to get the various parts of the overall system to communicate with one another. Fortunately you got some good human intervention in a reasonably timely fashion.
 

DC3

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From the QF perspective,I would have expected that the cancellation would have resulted in that seat being made available for (re)sale almost immediately. Obviously not, in this case.
 

Rangalad

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Dec 15, 2012
Messages
88
From the QF perspective,I would have expected that the cancellation would have resulted in that seat being made available for (re)sale almost immediately. Obviously not, in this case.
Most times cancelling the flight should cancel check-in, and return the seat to inventory. There have been a few instances where an off-load (cancel check-in) via CM ( QF check-in system) was required.
 

opusman

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I've often wondered what would happen if you cancelled a refundable fare a minute or so before boarding.
 

Seat0B

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Sep 20, 2018
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I actually cancelled 10 hrs before boarding. So it did not even feel that short notice. I’ve just checked my credit card statement and no refund has been processed as yet - over 2 weeks since I cancelled. I’ll have to call them about that too...
 

AIRwin

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I’ve just checked my credit card statement and no refund has been processed as yet - over 2 weeks since I cancelled. I’ll have to call them about that too...
I did a credit card chargeback when I was in a similar situation...
 
Joined
Oct 19, 2019
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Small world....we had a lady in CBR tell us the same thing on Sunday - didn't happen to be catching a MEL flight then did you? We'll certainly be avoiding the early check-ins moving forward!
 

Seat0B

Intern
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Sep 20, 2018
Messages
58
Small world....we had a lady in CBR tell us the same thing on Sunday - didn't happen to be catching a MEL flight then did you? We'll certainly be avoiding the early check-ins moving forward!
Well yes I was catching a flight to MEL on Sunday at about 3pm....was that you I spoke to in the line waiting to board???
 

Seat0B

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Sep 20, 2018
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Update: I called Qantas tonight about my missing refund and got that sorted. Chatting to the call taker, he said that there has been a reasonable number of people raising the same issue recently and that they would like to pass my details to IT to discuss what happened so they can try to identify the bug that is causing this. He also confirmed that I had cancelled just under 12 hours before the flight, and that there was nothing on my record marking me as a no show. Let's see if IT ever contact me!!
 

TheInsider

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The issue here is when cancelling a flight either through reservations or the website, it send the booking off to a queue to be actioned.
The flight bookings stay in the PNR and don't go, so people still think you are travelling and can't sell the seats.

The process could easily be changed to remove the flight segments as soon as the person cancels the flight - but no.

Just another joy of Qantas' **** IT systems and processes.
 

Archphoto

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Had similar happen last year, seems I'd missed the "robot" trawl according to the CSO I spoke with. It was eventually sorted out, although it wasn't a quick process - note though I'm no longer WP, just a pleb Bronze. Glad yours was a much quicker result!

Hopefully, the feedback is passed on, but we all know QF and IT often don't play nicely together. :p
 

ftm

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The problem is when checked in has been completed. If not checked in, it would have all been ok. Similar to a change in flight, if the passenger has checked in you first have to get them unchecked in before you can change the ticket.

It sounds like the QF online system sends the booking to a manual queue, which, like their manual redemption queue, is not the fastest moving. So it’s quite easy for the flight departure time to pass before the booking is managed.

The solution would be to block a cancellation online if check in has been completed, or make it possible for a passenger to uncheck in online.
 

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