Close in Fee on Award for travel to funeral and First downgrade

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by aparicio, Sep 18, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. aparicio

    aparicio Active Member

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    Long time lurker here.
    Recently we had a death in the family and I used miles for two First (only ones available) tix RT to get to the funeral in time. First I was charged a close-in booking fee, but was told by agent to just submit for reimbursement, they might want some proof.

    Second on the return flight SFO-ORD-CLT. SFO-ORD was delayed so while in first for that leg, missed connection to CLT and was not accommodated on another flight until ~7 hours later--last row of coach.

    Close-in fee: submitted reimbursement, received generic email that said,
    • Reservation booking service fees and close-in booking fees for award tickets are refundable only if you cancel your reservation within 24 hours of purchase. Our research shows that this request exceeded that timeframe, so no refund is due.
    Uhhh, never cancelled my reservation or are they saying that I need to "request" within 24 hours? Reason for the trip was unavoidable. Am I wrong to think that United should refund the fee?

    First Class--Because of United's delay (incoming SFO flight) connection was missed and forced to wait in ORD for 7 hours and then have remaining flight in coach. Should I be expecting a refund of some miles for the difference in First to Coach?

    No longer a United 1K, for many reasons.
    Newscience likes this.
  2. Wandering Aramean
    Original Member

    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Sorry for your loss.

    1) You're probably not due a refund of the fee. You can request one but there is typically a $50 service fee to get it and, quite frankly, I would not spend the energy to try to recover $50 which likely isn't going to happen anyways. The text you're reading there is a different beast and not relevant to your claim.

    2) There is no refund of miles due as the "fare" would be the same had it been booked in a mixed cabin. And I'm sure UA would have been happy to confirm you in F on another, later flight with seats available to book but getting on the earlier one made sense for many reasons I'm sure. You might be able to get some "good will" points for the delay but that's really about it.

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