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With scores of flyers affected by the thousands of canceled flights over the past week due to weather, you might think that your only recourse was to accept change or cancellation fee waivers being offered by airlines and rebook your travel for another time, but there might be more that you can do, and miles to be had.
Case in point: JetBlue canceled 45% of its flights on Monday. It’s rare that an airline will do this, but JetBlue made the executive decision to ground almost have of its flights and crews and wait out the storm. It issued cancellation and change waivers, but that’s little comfort to affected flyers who found themselves unequivocally stranded.
However, as a small way of compensation the airline announced that it would be issuing the following bundles of TrueBlue points to affected flyers depending on the number of cancellations they experienced:
1 cancellation: 5,000 points or $50 (for non TrueBlue members)
2 cancellations: 10,000 points or $100
3 cancellations: 20,000 points and a one-way flight voucher or $100 for TB members, and for non-members a one-way voucher or $100 credit
4 cancellations: 20,000 points and a roundtrip voucher or $200 for TB members, and for non-members a roundtrip voucher or $200 credit
If you were among the affected travelers, you don’t have to do anything. JetBlue will reach out to you with your options and if you choose the points, you’ll be compensated by January 20. In addition, people affected by the cancellations who had expenses directly related such as hotel stays and meals can email receipts to firstname.lastname@example.org for compensation.
While I applaud the airline for being proactive in this circumstance since no one can control the weather, it seems like Jetblue had an extra level of meltdown that other airlines did not experience. Still it’s better than a simple fee waiver and free rebooking, which is what most airlines do during weather disruptions.
For more information on similar situations, check out my post on How To Get Compensation When Things Go Wrong On Flights.
Here are the rest of the terms of the JetBlue compensation scheme:
Notification to Customers:
- TrueBlue members will be notified to the email address in their TrueBlue account
- Non-TrueBlue members who booked directly with JetBlue will be notified to the email provided in their reservation
- Customers who booked through 3rd party sites may not be notified by email (we do not have their email address)
- This above compensation is separate and in addition to any eligible Bill-of-Rights compensation
- TrueBlue points and service credits will be automatically created and deposited into accounts by January 20th
- Customers who incurred out-of-pocket expenses between January 3 – January 10 as a direct result of cancellations will be reviewed and taken into consideration for reimbursement. Customers may submit their receipts and request for review to Hercules@jetblue.com. Only submissions with receipts will be considered for reimbursement and all submissions must be made by January 31, 2014. Customers who have already submitted requests via jetblue.com/contact-us will be contacted by a crewmember and do not need to resubmit.
Hat tip: JetBlew.