How to Get Your Money Back If You’re Downgraded
My buddy Joe Brancatelli recently wrote an eye-opening tip about how to get your money back if you’re downgraded on a flight. Fortunately, this has never happened to me, but I know plenty of people who have been downgraded after buying a first class ticket. The most famous case involves the actress Andie MacDowell, who had this happen to her in January on American Airlines.
The worst part about getting downgraded from first to coach, says Joe, is that “airlines often refuse to refund the price difference between the premium class accommodation for which you paid and the coach seat to which you have been assigned. The airlines’ justification? Their contracts of carriage give them the right to do whatever they want regardless of the ticket you purchased and the class of service for which you paid.”
The credit card companies most likely won’t issue a partial refund unless they know the difference between the price you paid and the cost of the coach seat you’re assigned. So when you book a first class seat on a flight, what Joe advises you do is take a screenshot or print out the price of a coach class seat on the same flight you purchase the premium seat on. “If you are then denied your premium class seat and the airline refuses to refund your money, contact your credit card. And when they insist they can only refund if you can show the cost of coach seat, you’ll have the proof. If you do it that way, you will get your refund,” he says.
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Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.