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danield
02-24-2005, 08:30 AM
I am flying next week to MCO. Anybody had any experience with overbooked flights and being bumped? Did you get fair compensation from the airlines?

Thanks

Daniel

safetymom
02-24-2005, 08:37 AM
Are you looking to be bumped or are you concerned?

danield
02-24-2005, 08:45 AM
We're looking to be bumped (we read about the rules). we don't care if we have to take another flight or the flight the next morning as long as the compensation is sufficient (ticket refund, check, etc).

Our plane is already full according to the seating plan. We arrive at airport 2.5 hrs before departure. This is a flight between YUL (montreal) - LGA - MCO

Daniel

safetymom
02-24-2005, 08:49 AM
They usually will give you a voucher for a round trip ticket. The plane may show full on the seating plan but they have seats blocked off that only airport agents can assign so it may not be as full as you think.

When you get to the airport mention to the gate agent that you are volunteering to be bumped if the plane is full. How many of you are flying together? They may not bump all of you.

danield
02-24-2005, 08:55 AM
We're 4 of us. as long as arrive within a short time we can managed being bumped 2 x 2. I'm just wondering if any tickets offered would be YUL-LGA-MCO or just LGA-MCO?

This is a great web site.
Thanks a lot

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 08:58 AM
This is my fear. Maybe I'm wrong. :confused3 But what are the conditions and criteria that an airlines uses to bump me instead of the person that booked last?

I am going to have a hard time trying to control myself if I get bumped. Since I booked when there was sufficient seating left I think that the last people to get seats should be bumped. Why should anyone have to give up their seats to some self important moron that booked late? I would gladly give my seat up if I booked late or if they needed the seat for a funeral trip or medical trip. But just because Joe Schmo Idiot comes along and demands a seat because he is a frequent flyer? I don't think so.

safetymom
02-24-2005, 09:04 AM
When they start to figure out who they need to bump they will ask for volunteers first. If no one volunteers they will start with those that don't have seat assignments first. Then they usually go to who booked last. But it is up to the agent to decide how to handle it.

Yes frequent flyers are not usually the ones bumped. Rightly it should be that way. This may be someones once in a lifetime trip but the frequent flyers are flying all the time. Especially if you are in the very top of their frequent flyer program they will 99.9% of the time get a seat.

Trying to break it up into 2 and 2 to get bumped is going to be hard. It is a round trip ticket so that would cover connections if you are flying on the same airline all the way through to Orlando.

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 09:07 AM
When they start to figure out who they need to bump they will ask for volunteers first. If no one volunteers they will start with those that don't have seat assignments first. Then they usually go to who booked last. But it is up to the agent to decide how to handle it.
Good. :) This is just a real worry for me. It doesn't help that I watched "Planes, Trains, and Automobiles" on TV last night. :teeth:

chicknoodle99
02-24-2005, 09:10 AM
Depending on which airline you travel but some offer a free round trip ticket OR a voucher usually for around 300.00 as compensation for giving up your seat. I learned my lesson to take the voucher NOT the free ticket. The airlines only allow so many seats for the free tickets and I couldnt use one once. I always take the money instead as I can use it anytime and on any fare I want to. Just a thought.

We also took a bump once and the next flight wasnt until the next day so they put us up in a hotel and gave us food vouchers for dinner and breakfast. But be ready to split as they may not need 4people and only 2 or 1. They should ask you first if you are first on the list if you will seperate but if not, they they will go to the next person.

Good luck! Have fun! :earboy2:

safetymom
02-24-2005, 09:15 AM
It's very rare for them to give a voucher for cash. You can ask but usually it is a free round trip ticket. If they are really desperate they may go for giving cash or something better to get someone to volunteer.

I would suggest visiting www.flyertalk.com under miles and points for your airline. They could give you better advice for your situation.

danield
02-24-2005, 09:16 AM
Lets hope 4 "Joe Schmo Idiots" comes along so we can save a bit of $. It's the last Delta flight out of LGA to MCO.

Anyways, we still look forward for our family vacation.

Daniel

Lewisc
02-24-2005, 09:21 AM
Different airlines have different criteria to determine the order of involunatary bumping. Check your airlines website, look at the contract of carriage. SW bases in on the number on your boarding pass, as long as you get to the gate 10-15 minutes before your flight. Some airlines base it on the fare class.

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 09:32 AM
So far, getting to MCO doesnt look to be a problem. Yet.

Louisville, KY to Orlando, FL (http://home.insightbb.com/~g00fydad/pics/sdf2mco.jpg)

But... getting from MCO back to SDF looks like a little problem may come up.

Orlando, FL to Louisville, KY (http://home.insightbb.com/~g00fydad/pics/mco2sdf.jpg)

Lewisc
02-24-2005, 10:38 AM
So far, getting to MCO doesnt look to be a problem. Yet.

Louisville, KY to Orlando, FL (http://home.insightbb.com/~g00fydad/pics/sdf2mco.jpg)

But... getting from MCO back to SDF looks like a little problem may come up.

Orlando, FL to Louisville, KY (http://home.insightbb.com/~g00fydad/pics/mco2sdf.jpg)

I wouldn't worry.
Check your airlines contract of carriage. Generally people with assigned seats, who get to the gate on time, are the last to be involuntarily bumped. The on line seating charts aren't worth much. Some airlines block out seats for gate assignment. The question isn't if every seat is sold but if the flight is overbooked.

safetymom
02-24-2005, 10:41 AM
Also if the flight is looking full at this time and you aren't flying for awhile they may change the equipment to something larger.

I would just keep an eye on your flights.

CarolA
02-24-2005, 10:45 AM
Depends on the airline. I normally fly Delta. They don't give roundtrip they give cash vouchers. They aren't as generous as they used to be however. Also, pay attention.. if you volunteer at $200 and they raise the offer go back and ask for the new offer. If they say no tell them you want your seat back. (If they are raising the offer they are probably desperate!)

SW gives you a refund for the price you paid and a free ticket (or something like that)

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 10:56 AM
Delta's Boarding Priorities (http://home.insightbb.com/~g00fydad/delta_airlines_boarding_priorities.htm)

At least I know that if I get my boarding passes 24 hours ahead of time and arrive 15 minutes early (I already have the seat assignments) we shouldn't get bumped. :)

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 10:59 AM
Also if the flight is looking full at this time and you aren't flying for awhile they may change the equipment to something larger.

I would just keep an eye on your flights.
I check them daily. :rotfl2: Kinda neurotic huh? :) I wish they would change the plane to anything larger than the PGW we are going to be on. :goodvibes

CarolA
02-24-2005, 11:01 AM
Get there MORE then 15 mintues in advance if you are really worried. 30 minutes would be better. However, being the non panic type (there is always another flight I try to get there just as they start boarding (20 to 25 minutes)

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 11:09 AM
Get there MORE then 15 mintues in advance if you are really worried. 30 minutes would be better. However, being the non panic type (there is always another flight I try to get there just as they start boarding (20 to 25 minutes)
Honestly, we plan on leaving the house at 5:00am and getting to SDF at 5:15am. We are using curbside checkin so by the time we get through security and to the gate it should only be 5:45am. That will have us at the gate an hour before the flight at 6:45am. (you can laugh now :))

I think I feel an ulcer kicking in http://home.insightbb.com/~g00fydad/pics/puke.gif

safetymom
02-24-2005, 11:20 AM
I think you will be good. I like to allow extra time at the airport but then I am a geek when it comes to airport, planes, etc. I enjoy spending time in airports.

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 11:32 AM
I think you will be good. I like to allow extra time at the airport but then I am a geek when it comes to airport, planes, etc. I enjoy spending time in airports.
I think it will be a neat expearience for my kids. I'm the only one in the household to have ever been on a plane. Quite a few times actually. I have just never encountered being bumped or being asked to. :confused3 I have flown close to 15 or 16 times and haven't noticed this yet.

I have another question here... I have never used curbside checkin either but I understand that the person there has my boarding pass. Do they have to go to a pc outside there and print it out or do I need to call ahead and have them get it ready? Sorry to sound so stupid here but I have never needed to use this service before.

DD is gonna love the airport. :)

gw_lit
02-24-2005, 11:34 AM
Most airlines will continue to bump up the compensation until they get the required number of volunteers. The last resort is to pull people from the flight involuntarily. Even though Airlines have to report IDB (involuntary denied boardings) and VDB (voluntary denied boardings) to the Department of Transportation, the airlines are ranked only on IDB's so, obviously, they want to keep that number as low as possible.

Information on cancelled and delayed flights, denied boardings, and mishandled baggage can all be found in the DOT's Air Travel Consumer Report found at http://airconsumer.ost.dot.gov/reports/index.htm. It can be pretty interesting reading.

safetymom
02-24-2005, 11:34 AM
You can print your boarding passes at home for the trip down. When you are at MCO returning home and won't have a printer you just show ID for those requiring it and they will print the boarding passes for you then.

It's all very quick and easy and then you won't need to visit the ticket counter inside.

gw_lit
02-24-2005, 11:37 AM
I have another question here... I have never used curbside checkin either but I understand that the person there has my boarding pass. Do they have to go to a pc outside there and print it out or do I need to call ahead and have them get it ready? Sorry to sound so stupid here but I have never needed to use this service before.

DD is gonna love the airport. :)

There is a PC at curbside check-in, you'll have to show your ID, they'll pull up your reservation and print you your boarding passes and luggage claim checks right there. I'd bring a printed copy of your itinerary just in case.

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 11:40 AM
Information on cancelled and delayed flights, denied boardings, and mishandled baggage can all be found in the DOT's Air Travel Consumer Report found at http://airconsumer.ost.dot.gov/reports/index.htm. It can be pretty interesting reading.
That is very interesting. Delta has the highest number of bumped passengers of any other airline. :sad:

ducklite
02-24-2005, 03:10 PM
We're 4 of us. as long as arrive within a short time we can managed being bumped 2 x 2. I'm just wondering if any tickets offered would be YUL-LGA-MCO or just LGA-MCO?

This is a great web site.
Thanks a lot

They generally won't break up a family.

Anne

ducklite
02-24-2005, 03:16 PM
I fly back and forth to MCO very regularly. I PURPOSELY book the flights that I KNOW are always oversold. :)

Then I get a voucher for a free r/t ticket anywhere in the US, and get a first class seat on the first flight the next morning. The gate agent down there knows me, knows I'm always looking to take the bump, and knows that I won't need a hotel, so he's often got it all ready for me before I even get there if he thinks he'll need the seat :) Of course when DH has to turn around and come back to the airport to get me he's not always too happy about it...

Anne

Chicago526
02-24-2005, 04:03 PM
I fly back and forth to MCO very regularly. I PURPOSELY book the flights that I KNOW are always oversold. :)

Then I get a voucher for a free r/t ticket anywhere in the US, and get a first class seat on the first flight the next morning. The gate agent down there knows me, knows I'm always looking to take the bump, and knows that I won't need a hotel, so he's often got it all ready for me before I even get there if he thinks he'll need the seat :) Of course when DH has to turn around and come back to the airport to get me he's not always too happy about it...

Anne

I was about to suggest this! If you do get bumped (voluntary or otherwise) ask if they can put you in first class on the next flight (in addition to whatever comp they are offering). The gate agents often do it if there is space, just because they are happy you aren't screaming at them!

G00fyDad
02-24-2005, 05:49 PM
But I wanna scream. ;)

MaryKatesMom
02-24-2005, 08:43 PM
Just wanted to chime in that this was a very informative thread. I never even thought of taking a cash voucher instead of round trip tickets but it makes sense. Thank you everyone!! :wave:

SyracuseWolvrine
02-24-2005, 11:52 PM
Sadly, the airline seat maps really don't mean anything, because there are some seats that are blocked, that will show up as unavailable on the seat map, even though the flight may not be sold out.

What matters is a string that looks somewhat like this:
UA#### MCO ORD 32S 0 Y9 B9 M9 H9 E9 U9 Q9 V9 W9 S8 T0 K9 L0 G0

I looked at the seat map for this flight, and it showed no available seats, yet, by looking at this line above (usually used by travel agents and airline employees), I can tell that there are at least 9 seats left to be sold on this plane (possibly more, as the system won't show a # greater than 9)

(I have a friend that's a travel agent, and they pulled this sample flight data for me ... happens to be a flight I'm booked on in April)

seashoreCM
02-24-2005, 11:56 PM
Most of the time there are more volunteers than they need.

Some airlines including United even give the most frequent fliers priority for volunteering, using a computer controlled volunteer list.

Some airlines including American and Delta are more likely to bump passengers who did not succeed in selecting seats in advance.

A family with two parents traveling can attempt to volunteer by signing up consecutively and having one parent sign up first and the other sign up last, so they can accept any number of bump slots from one up to the family size and not leave any kids traveling alone.

Disney hints:
http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/disney.htm

rsschneck
02-25-2005, 12:21 AM
This past March (2004) we were able to get bumped not once but twice! We are a family of three and I let them know if the flight was full we would volunteer to bump.

This was with Delta (our favorite). The first bump landed us $400 checks each person. The second bump landed us $400 travel vouchers each person. We pocketed the cash and went to Disney World and Grandma's house this past Christmas.

We will take a bump just about any time. Be prepared to take whatever flight they give you and it could be the next day. If there are two adults bring cell phones in case 1 person bumps and the other person flys. Your checked bags are going on without you so have toiletries and clean undies with you! :rotfl2:

smilingmouse
02-25-2005, 12:42 AM
My family and I were bumped on one of our flights down to MCO in 1/05. We all got !$300.00 to use on a future flight and a bump to 1st class on the next flight....We were VERY happy :)

G00fyDad
02-25-2005, 09:10 AM
Wow. I really cant wrap my mind around this concept. :)

(before anyone goes off on me, just know that I am not critisizing ANYONE. I think it is great that you all want to be bumped.)

I just cannot understand what would make a person want to be bumped. I know that you get money or vouchers but I still dont get it. :) I mean, maybe it is just that this trip is: A) our 1st real family vacation B) our first trip to the World C) something so special for us we couldnt bear to miss even a day of the trip we have planned and D) this trip has been in planning for about a year so far and we still have 7 1/2 months to go.

I guess I can just hope that there are a bunch of you on my flight. :rotfl2:

safetymom
02-25-2005, 09:23 AM
I travel quite a bit and usually when the flight is overbooked I really need to be where I am flying. It never seems to happen when it doesn't matter to me when I fly.

Free tickets are always good though. :) But if I was going to WDW I wouldn't want to miss a minute of the fun.

ducklite
02-25-2005, 09:27 AM
I have a home near Orlando and a home in Central NJ. I fly back and forth between them regularly. Although we call the FL house a "vacation home", it's really more of a second home. It requires upkeep, I actually spend a good deal of the time I'm there cleaning it, pruning the shrubs, fertilizing the gardenia's, same stuff I do at the other house. At any rate, when I'm there, I'm not really on vacation. Which house I sleep in that night doesn't really matter to me--I even have the same mattress and box spring set in both!

So I try to book my flights to be the ones that are always oversold. Then I use the free ticket vouchers to travel to other places--a couple weeks ago we went to Detroit to visit friends for the weekend--a trip which would have been relatively expensive (the plane tickets were over $400 each if I had paid cash) too much for a weekend in Detroit!

If I were going on the vacation of a lifetime, or a one time deal, I would feel like you do. But keep in mind a lot of people aren't really in a big hurry to get where they are going, so to them getting a free r/t ticket and first class seat out of it is a really good deal!

Anne

Chicago526
02-25-2005, 09:45 AM
Wow. I really cant wrap my mind around this concept. :)

(before anyone goes off on me, just know that I am not critisizing ANYONE. I think it is great that you all want to be bumped.)

I just cannot understand what would make a person want to be bumped. I know that you get money or vouchers but I still dont get it. :) I mean, maybe it is just that this trip is: A) our 1st real family vacation B) our first trip to the World C) something so special for us we couldnt bear to miss even a day of the trip we have planned and D) this trip has been in planning for about a year so far and we still have 7 1/2 months to go.

I guess I can just hope that there are a bunch of you on my flight. :rotfl2:

I feel like you do, most of the time. I just want to get there! But if I was ever not in a hurry, and if they could guarantee the next flight (or at least that I'd get there the same day and not be stuck overnight), I might do it if the comp was good enough AND they could put me in first.

gw_lit
02-25-2005, 10:16 AM
I just cannot understand what would make a person want to be bumped.

I guess I can just hope that there are a bunch of you on my flight.

Like others, if were heading to Orlando (or anywhere for that matter) on a family vacation, I doubt that I'd volunteer to be bumped unless it was to a flight a couple hours later and the compensation was worthwhile. Now, if we were returning home and had some flexibility, I'll volunteer every time.

Don't stress over it, even though Delta has the highest number of IDB's, its only 1.12 people that are bumped involuntarily out of every 10,000 travelling. (Of course, I'd have issues if they bumped .12 of me... but I could stand to lose the weight.) Get checked in and get to the airport early and you shouldn't have problems. And as was mentioned earlier, don't worry about the seat map too much, there could be quite a few seats that are only available to be assigned at the airport.

baby1038
02-25-2005, 10:17 AM
I voluntarily got bumped once while flying USAir. I was traveling from PHL to MCO. I was flying by myself with no checked luggage so it wasn't a problem for me. I was actually able to get on an earlier flight than I was originally going to have (I had to run to the gate since it was getting ready to leave). I was compensated with 1 free round trip voucher (which was transferrable--I let my brother use it), I was able to fly first class down to Florida and I also received a $10 food voucher to be used in the Airport. All in all I would do it again anytime.

~Michelle :flower:

rsschneck
02-25-2005, 11:14 AM
When we were bumped last March we were not in any hurry. We were going to Hilton Head and flew into RDU (5 hour drive from the resort). Anyway, we had booked a hotel in North Carolina for that first night and planned to drive down the next day. Not in any hurry!

Coming home we were booked on a Saturday. Again no hurry to get home which was good because they put us up in a hotel and did the meal voucher thing. We did not get home until Sunday.

If you are not in a hurry and you travel at least 3 times per year for vacations like we do. It is always nice to have airfare already paid for your next trip!

kap10
02-25-2005, 02:51 PM
When you get bumped, do you volunteer when you check in or do you wait for them to ask for volunteers? I know some of you said you volunteer, but how about the rest of you? :confused3

SyracuseWolvrine
02-25-2005, 05:14 PM
I usually go up to the gate agent and ask to put my name on the volunteer list as soon as I clear security. After I've done that, then I can go get a snack or whatever.

I volunteer to be bumped because I'm USUALLY travelling by myself, and not meeting friends until later in the day after arrival anyways. I don't care if I spend a few extra hours in the airport if it nets me a free trip or a travel voucher. (Or when I was flying back to school and knew I didn't have any classes the next day, I'd also volunteer for bumps then)

CarolA
02-25-2005, 08:41 PM
SafetyMom, I am in your boat. They only want bumps on flights I HAVE to make for work or on days I am too exhausted to deal with it!

safetymom
02-25-2005, 08:48 PM
I once got $100 after I complained about a flight. An engine went out on one of the small airplanes. It was very loud, sounded like the engine self destructed, even had my Bose headphones on and it was loud.

The pilot had a hard time flying the plane and we turned around and landed to a runway lined with ambulances and fire trucks.

After we landed the pilot finally came on and said I don't know if it makes any difference at this point but I was trained in one engine flying. I don't care to repeat any flights like that.

They gave us $10 for food and put us up in a Motel 6 type of place for the night.

When I got home I complained and they sent me $100 voucher.