An about face on a mistake fare


And this one is working out in favor of the consumers. The recent hullabaloo about the premium cabin fares priced ex-Rangoon to various destinations at a very steep discount has been interesting to follow. Like most “mistake” fares the cycle of the booking process is following the usual steps. First euphoria at the deal, followed by apprehension and worry as to whether the fare would be honored and then confusion or outrage when the tickets were canceled. And now, euphoria again, as the tickets are being reinstated.

After trading emails with Vayama and ANA a couple weeks ago regarding the tickets I booked for our New Years vacation and their cancellation of those tickets I received the following today:

Dear Customer –
Following discussions with our airline partners the decision has been made to reinstate your previously canceled reservation from Rangoon.

There are more details, including a deadline to accept or decline the offer, but this is excellent news on the consumer rights front in the air travel world. For too long the airlines have held all the power in such situations. It seems that the tide may finally be turning.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

7 Comments

  1. This is great news. Are you actually going to travel to RGN? I had to pass on this one…

  2. The airline should have every right to cancel tickets booked on mistake fares. Not that they should cancel it, but the contract of carriage typically grants them the right, as it should.

  3. They’ve probably worked something out with the Burmese government to not allow visa’s to anyone on these tickets and then split the profit on them 50/50 🙂

  4. @Kris Ziel

    Have to disagree, at least in the US – if a company advertises a price for a product, they are legally required to honour it. Now they can pull the price the moment they find out about the error, which is fair, but until they do, too bad, that’s the law. And if a provision in the Contract of Carriage is illegal, it’s void.

    I understand this creates exposure to losses with the delays involved in loading a new fare into the GDS systems, but again, too bad…if your employees do their job badly, you pay the price.

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