AA Flight Cancelled, No Flight For 2 Days- Who Pays For Hotel?

AA
image: aero-shots

Here we are stuck in St Louis when we should already be home from our spring break trip to Argentina and Uruguay thanks to AA.

We booked our roundtrip flights using AA miles. The flights seemed like a good deal with the trip home being a bit of a pain. And then it got worse…

Our flight to Buenos Aires from NYC was direct and forgettable. Bad food, uncomfortable seats but there were some decent movie options.

The way home would include three flights, starting in Montevideo, Uruguay.

We started out on Thursday night flying MVD-MIA. We were surprised to see no IFEs at the seats, pretty surprising for a 9 hour flight. (No entertainment available on our personal devices via app either.)

We arrived in Miami with a 4 hour layover. After wandering around and grabbing breakfast, the time moved and we were ready to board the next flight to St Louis.

The seats on the St Louis flight were surprisingly comfortable and we arrived without issue at around 10:30 in the morning.

With a layover of around 5.5 hours, our plan was to head downtown for lunch, try some St Louis style pizza, take a look at the Gateway Arch and try some famous Ted Drewe’s custard before heading back for our flight home.

As we got into our Uber to the airportI received a text alert from AA informing us of a one hour flight delay.

When we got to there, I received another text about a gate change. Two minutes later, I received another text that our flight was cancelled and that they were working to rebook us. The text also said that an update would be sent soon.

I decided to call the AA Gold line to find out about our options. I was told right away that the cancellation was weather related. While on hold (14 minutes later), I received another text from AA to call to rebook.

After a lengthy amount of time on hold, I was told that there were no flights available until Monday! My first thoughts were that I’d miss work and need to spend three nights at a hotel.

I asked about flights with another airline and was told that nothing was available, everything was sold out due to the weather issues.

I then asked where we were supposed to stay for 3 nights and the rep said when there are cancellations due to weather, it was on us. In all honesty, I can understand one night due to weather but three? That just sounds crazy!

I then asked for a supervisor. After another 25 minute hold, she came on the line and told me the same info. She told me that the only flight home was at 4:08 PM on Monday.

As for the hotels, she said that no compensation could be given over the phone. I was really pissed and said I don’t want compensation, I just want somewhere to stay until the flight!

I moved the phone away from my mouth and yelled something over to Kim (she was sitting a bit away with the kids), there’s no bleepin flight until Monday. The rep said that I could not speak to her that way and hung up on me!

The hang-up was a minor blessing in disguise…

I immediately called back and got a rep who initially also saw flights home on Monday, but at a later time! She then did a minute or 2 of searching and got us flights home on Sunday with a connection in Chicago on another airline.

While not ideal, it’s still one less day that we’re stuck in St Louis.

As for our three- night hotel stay, I don’t understand how AA does’t bear some of the responsibility.

What do you think?

22 thoughts on “AA Flight Cancelled, No Flight For 2 Days- Who Pays For Hotel?

  1. There was a time when an interline agreement with another airline would have gotten you home on the next day or the same day, Michael — even for irregular operations due to weather — but I suppose those generally do not exist anymore.

    You may not have a choice but to calculate your expenses between the time you were supposed to go home and the time you finally reached home and battle it out with the customer service department of the airline.

    If you get nowhere with them or if they do too little for you, you may want to contact the consumer affairs departments of New York — where you live — and Texas, which is where American Airlines is based.

    Unfortunately, American Airlines will likely claim that weather is out of their control and that there is nothing that they can do for you — but it never hurts to try. Weather may have been a factor; but we are not talking about a a major weather event — such as a hurricane or blizzard as two examples — which would otherwise have a delay of a few days to get to your destination understandable.

    Interestingly, American Airlines never did have a weather waiver pertaining to any parts of the United States other than Chicago:

    https://thegate.boardingarea.com/travel-alert-april-2019-snow-to-affect-chicago-and-midwestern-united-states/
    https://thegate.boardingarea.com/travel-alert-april-2019-inclement-weather-to-again-affect-northeastern-united-states/

    I look forward to reading the progress of your dilemma and hope it is resolved to your satisfaction — as in getting home sooner…

  2. I’ve had 3 weather cancellations this year from Alaska airlines, all forcing me to get a hotel or rent a car to get to another airport and they refuse to pay for the accommodations because of weather cancellation. This in spite of all 3 being delayed due to their issue and then canceled because weather moved in. Had the flights been on time, all 3 would’ve gone just fine

  3. Brian Cohen- Thanks for the info & suggestions! I’ll definitey be pursuing this when we get home.

    Patrick- My kids know about cursing and are not sheltered from it. Not a big deal IMO at all.

    Dave- What a pain! Did you reach out to the airline after you made it home?

  4. In Europe airlines pay… no compensation for weather but they must accomodate. If no weather issue also compensation (which to some extend is debatable). But accomodate they must and my rule is no solution in an hour which hotel I book myself and claim it later.

  5. You pay of course. Unless there is a regulation mandating that the airline pay for it which the airline fought tooth and nail to defeat and the whores in Congress did try to defeat, giving in to the lobbyists. Funnily all the anti regulation dumbfuxks wouldn’t mind such regulation if it helped themselves.

  6. This weather excuse is too much. I’ve been on flights where the weather was sunny and nice at the origin AND destination of the flight as well as large parts of the US. Sometimes airlines are using the logic “if there is bad weather anywhere in the continental US, any cancellation is weather related”.

    There should be no exception for weather except maybe a snow storm that closes at least 3 major airports or bad weather at the destination or origin.

  7. Since weather isn’t airlines responsibility, insurance covers that. Credit card trip delay insurance may cover cost of incidentals including hotel and food.

  8. When it’s due to weather AA will not reimburse whatever you spend for meals and hotels during the delay, but what you can do is request compensation in the form of flight vouchers (maybe a few hundred dollars). Finally remember to tell them you will escalate your complaint to DOT.

  9. Following closely. Today, my direct AA flight was cancelled due to weather. I got to pay two days of hotel and car rental until a 1 stop flight on Monday. Arrival and departure cities are sunny, so I am confused when AA claimed weather related issues.

  10. Patrick- Well of course I mind!

    Chris W- I’ll definitely reach out to AA but am not counting on anything.

    Debit- One night due to weather, fine but 2-3, that’s insane!

    Derek- I hear that. It was raining in NYC and the Mets played a baseball game with a delay that night. The stadium is a few miles from LGA…

    Noah- The prob is that the flight was booked with miles so I’m not sure what CC would cover it.

    Trump- Not a bad idea.

    Dave- Crazy!

  11. American Airlines just did this to me. Leaving Charlotte to head to Providence after a weekend of seeing the Masters practice rounds. The weather at Charlotte was bad for a 15 minute time period at 4 pm. The plane coming in from Houston that would eventually be my plane was apparently delayed because of this. My flight was the last out to the Northeast and was at 8:45. The gate people kept pushing it back with teaser announcements like, “The plane is here, we just need a crew now.” They got two crews, but then those crews magically were put on other planes and sent away. When it was all over (10 minutes after a flight to CT left the airport), the announcement was, “We are having trouble finding a pilot crew who would be legal due to hours.” Boom. Midnight now. No flights home until the next day. American Airlines is horrible. Just horrible.

    1. Making matters worse…American Airlines was completely not helpful to a young man on my flight. He was coming to America via Texas Immigration. He told me so later and his “luggage” was a bag that announced as much. American simply pulled me aside and said, “Hey. You speak English. We are moving this flight around. You look after him and get him where he needs to go.”

      I asked repeatedly for some help. A translator (the kid spoke Portuguese, I don’t). I asked for someone who could walk him through the process. All my questions got the same response. We’ll see what we can do.

      Thankfully Google has created Google Translate and I was able to communicate pretty easily after that. (Not a plug-I’m not associated)

      The lack of concern for a customer like him (not to mention the plane full of people returning to PVD that night) has made me a life long American Airlines avoider.

  12. After my last experience with AA (denied boarding because pilot got his fuel calcs wrong!) I will not fly any American airline (I travel to and from Europe) as they are all dreadful and have no respect for their customers. European airlines are better regulated and generally serve the customer better.

  13. American’s cancellations are ALWAYS due to weather. An AA 6 hour delay, flying back from Bogota, was caused by “hot brakes”. Pilot obviously landed long and really needed to get on them. Hours later, weather as the reason. Sunny in Bogota and in Miami! Does rain in Cancun count as a reason? Who does AA think they are fooling?

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