While airline practices continue to fill media headlines, Tangerine Travel consultants and the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) have compiled some tips to avoid being bumped as well questions to ask to ensure you are compensated appropriately.
Avoid Being Bumped
To avoid being bumped, ensure you have a seat assignment. Passengers with seat assignments are typically only bumped if they arrive late and their seat has been released. So even if there is a middle seat left to confirm…be sure to take it. Unhappy with your seat assignment? Tangerine Travel consultants have the technology to see when more desirable seats open up. Ask your Tangerine Travel consultant how you can sign up today!
Voluntary vs. Involuntary Bumping
Voluntary bumping occurs when a traveler with a confirmed seat assignment agrees to give up his or her negotiated seat for compensation. Since this is not regulated by the Department of Transportation, airlines give employees guidelines for bargaining with passengers, and they may select those volunteers willing to sell back their reservations for the lowest price.
Involuntary bumping occurs when an airline prohibits a paid passenger from boarding a flight because it has oversold the flight. The Department of Transportation regulates the compensation of involuntary bumping.
What to Ask When You Have Been Bumped
If you volunteer to give up your seat in response to an airline offer of a free ticket, it is important to ask about alternate arrangements and restrictions for using the offered compensation. Some questions to ask could include:
Can you confirm me on a later flight with a seat assignment?
Does the voucher or other means of compensation have an expiration date by when it must be used or redeemed?
Are there any “blackout dates” such as holidays, when I cannot use the voucher/ticket?
Who makes the reservation when using the voucher and how far in advance must this be done?
No matter where you are traveling, when you book your trip through Tangerine Travel, you have a travel advocate that is only a phone call or email away. For more information on traveler “fly rights” visit the Department of Transportation website by clicking here.