Downgraded from Business Class.

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markis10

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The passengers weren't denied boarding. They were accommodated in a different section of the aircraft. These regulations regarding volunteers do not apply. There is a post by MEL _Traveller a while back confirming this.

I will leave it to the lawyers however I believe they were denied boarding based on the definition per Nader v. Allegheny Airlines, 426 U.S. 290 (1976).
 

amaroo

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The passengers weren't denied boarding. They were accommodated in a different section of the aircraft. These regulations regarding volunteers do not apply. There is a post by MEL _Traveller a while back confirming this.

They were bullied into accepting an inferior product.
 

maninblack

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They were bullied into accepting an inferior product.

Quite right. It's the 'gun to the head' element that is disturbing. Its a long, long haul flight that goes once a day. Not like being asked to shift to an alternate flight in 2 or 3 hours.
 

RooFlyer

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The DOT regulations cover involuntary boarding. They only stipulate :
14CFR250.6 “(c) The passenger is offered accommodations or is seated in a section of the aircraft other than that specified on the ticket at no extra charge, except that a passenger seated in a section for which a lower fare is charged shall be entitled to an appropriate refund”

We have been told that the couple were advised of a $700 refund by the check-in staff after they refused re-booking and advised of the involuntary downgrade.

Well, I'm not going to argue with anyone who can quote DoT regulations to the sub-clause, at 7:33am responding to a AFF post 7 minutes prior. I was barely through the front page of the Oz at that time!
 

MEL_Traveller

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I will leave it to the lawyers however I believe they were denied boarding based on the definition per Nader v. Allegheny Airlines, 426 U.S. 290 (1976).

the pax weren't denied boarding. I'm not aware the decision has been expanded to include class of travel.
 

Pushka

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In our business, if we sold a service to a customer, made them pay for a luxury service upfront, perhaps several months prior, then on the day told them, "Ooops, sorry, only our basic service is available as we overbooked. But you can come back tomorrow".....we would be out of business in no time. Telling people "hey, didn't you read our T&C's that we don't guarantee anything" wouldn't cut it.

Why are airlines exempt from normal business practices?

This would have been a non story had one of the passengers not had a medical appointment so quickly upon return.

Actually that's a red herring. If there had been a major disruption to service then perhaps it's relevant but that isn't what happened here.
 

Princess Fiona

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Well, I'm not going to argue with anyone who can quote DoT regulations to the sub-clause, at 7:33am responding to a AFF post 7 minutes prior. I was barely through the front page of the Oz at that time!

I'm not trying to be a smart cough so please forgive me :)

Frankly I'm appalled at what happened to this poor couple. Whenever I read something like this it spooks me a little as a frequent business traveller. I have spent the last couple of days educating myself so that in the event of a similar thing occurring to myself, family or friends I will know what to do.
My conclusion is that unless your flight is subject to EU regulations you will be sorely disappointed by accepting an involuntary downgrade on any airline :(
 

Pushka

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<snip>
My conclusion is that unless your flight is subject to EU regulations you will be sorely disappointed by accepting an involuntary downgrade on any airline :(

Then maybe that needs fixing! ;) If Europe looks after its passengers then there is no reason in the world, that Qantas can't follow likewise.
 

Heleigh

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I have read most post on this thread – I know I’ll be repeating statements and I'm not pro QF (my view would be for any airline)

  1. Since my early 20’s I’ve learnt you need a two day leeway for international (the day of expected travel and the following day) if you have something to do.
  2. Over selling – most airlines do – not to make more money but for the no shows and the people turning up after counter closes – generally most people don’t mind being put up and flying out next day (hopefully in a better class); and may compensation.
  3. Early check-in at counter is not the same as check-in on line. I’m the counter girl for check-in but usually in F and so far no problem.
  4. I make most bookings via airline/hotels due to few problems with TA

I do feel for EmilyP parents in they were not given the opportunity to reject but told. Not nice but we still don’t know the full story and we never will.

I never say never to fly a particular airline because I don’t like going back on my word. Pro rata EmilyP how bad have Q really been for you parent over the years and if it wasn’t for a specialist appointment the next day (to which I’ve been well acquainted with in the last two years) I sure they would have enjoyed another night in LA and maybe negotiate F for the following day via Mel/Syd

It was good to bring it to AFF for venting and get the initial situation going but ultimately it’s between the airline (any airline) and the client.

I still think QF should look into this and see if an upgrade (CL/P1/P [not expecting G/S/B but you never know]) or staff were give a seat before a paying client

The manifest (I’m not sure on this one) which stated they were seat together (probably Y) which would have been the last print out after check-in closed and J seat given to mum after.

Hope your parents get back to a happy frame of mind. Don't know the saying but something along the lines "what's happened can't be changed ...":D
 
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maninblack

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So of course you can be bumped from F too. Same T & C's apply. Story is they don't oversell F but who knows, or perhaps Kylie or Heston or Mrs Abbott or Mr Joyce's partner needs a seat at the last minute.
 

get me outta here

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Perhaps a jouro / TV station IS in negotiations with EmilyP's parents to up the QF offer, for a story. Hopefully, no non-disclosure agreements have been signed prematurely.

It would be good to hear the progress of the case even if no details are allowed(?)

Or if any of the journos who hang round this forum have sniffed this out as a story.
 

Pushka

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Just because airlines have historically overbooked, does not make that model of business correct in today's market.
 

serfty

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So of course you can be bumped from F too. Same T & C's apply. Story is they don't oversell F but who knows, or perhaps Kylie or Heston or Mrs Abbott or Mr Joyce's partner needs a seat at the last minute.
In which case, the compensation proactively offered to any downgraded/IDB PAX needs to substantial so as to be in line with the disservice.
 

BD1959

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I do feel for EmilyP parents in they were not given the opportunity to reject but told. Not nice but we still don’t know the full story and we never will.

<snip>

It was good to bring it to AFF for venting and get the initial situation going but ultimately it’s between the airline (any airline) and the client.

Sorry, disagree with the last point.

Whatever the settlement is on this particular case should - rightly - remain between EmilyP's parents and QF.

However, this whole sorry saga appears to highlight a misunderstanding on the part of the FF community that an airline will protect its status passengers over and above non-status passengers. Now it may well transpire that - as remote a possibility - Gold was the lowest status in the J cabin that day; it may also transpire that - as early as EmilyP's parents checked-in, they were still the last to do so with Gold status - or even that everyone else checking in were single travellers and as such it was more "pragmatic" to downgrade EmilyP's parents than those coming behind. Given all the above, it may well be that QF followed precisely the conditions under which a downgrade was necessary.

BUT.

If this is the process, then I'm with the previous poster (sorry can't find it at the moment) in agreeing that QF are VERY transparent in the method used to process an upgrade and in my own interests, and I'd have thought anyone who may be referred to the T&Cs in future - and from this sorry episode it appears that QF consider anyone "fair game" given those T&Cs are universal when purchasing a ticket - the method used to process a downgrade should be given equal transparency.

On a brighter note, perhaps there's opportunity for QF for additional revenue here: downgrade insurance. "In the unlikely event that QF require to downgrade your seat from the cabin you've purchased, click here to purchase cabin-guarantee insurance or click here to purchase full-refund insurance". Surely this would be an airline global-first opportunity!!

Regards,

BD
 

Mr_Orange

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On a brighter note, perhaps there's opportunity for QF for additional revenue here: downgrade insurance. "In the unlikely event that QF require to downgrade your seat from the cabin you've purchased, click here to purchase cabin-guarantee insurance or click here to purchase full-refund insurance". Surely this would be an airline global-first opportunity!!

OT: I don't think we need to give QF any ideas to charge more for their tickets. In any case, what would happen if everyone bought the seat guarantee and the flight was still over-booked.
 
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