Free Flights For Delayed Flights!
This is not very known to most travelers, even the most experienced travelers! But did you happen to know that if you’re delayed for your flight for over 3 hours you can contact the customer relations department of your airline and request compensation in the form of a eVoucher credit, or in the form of airline miles? That means FREE FLIGHTS!!
Today I am booking mine and Ryan’s flight for the holidays and because of using all 3 of these methods, we are able to hop back home on the other side of the country, fo frizzle! If you are heading back to be with family over the holidays, make sure to check out this guide for you holiday travel needs.
It usually a happy day for me when I am able delayed for flights. I typically am not one to have very hard deadlines when it comes to travel. I tend to be very flexible with my travel. Typically it’s because I don’t have kids with me, and we tend to be pretty easy going when shit hits the fan. But for those who don’t have that kind of leeway, bear in mind that there are consolation prizes to hopefully ease the burden of scheduling cluster fucks.
eVouchers are an excellent way of getting flights for free! eVouchers are used like a digital gift cards and have a card number followed with a PIN and expiration date. These can be used on any American Airlines itinerary going anywhere in the world. So you don’t have to only stay in the continental U.S or even have to be on American metal (American metal= an actual American Airlines aircraft), you can use it for a partner or codeshare flight. Only thing is that you have to use it on flights originating in the U.S, other than that it’s pretty good way to get a free flight!
Another Great form of getting free flights are through the redemption of airline miles. Airline miles often get looked over because it costs so much to redeem your miles. However finding the sweet spots in award calendars, you’re able to get lots of flight options for a fraction of the cost. Anything in the continental U.S is 12,500 miles one way. If you’re trying to get from New York to Los Angeles you can get a lot of bang for your buck if you had to stay a few hours later than expected at the airport!
Typically in lieu of an eVoucher you can ask for miles but the amount of however many miles you have will depend on either your loyalty status at the airline, or how long the delay was. But requesting is always best when acquiring these benefits not demanding. There isn’t a set law (like in the EU) where airlines are required to give compensation for schedule disruptions and a stipend for food/clothing. So asking nicely will get you something, rather than nothing.
You remember that whole United debacle? The body slam heard round the world? Well because that flight was so packed and no one wanted to volunteer, United now has made it a policy to go all the way up to $10,000.00 in flight vouchers in the event someone has to give up their seat. This is the exact opposite of unintentional delays because you are volunteering to delay yourself. This my friends, is my best effing friend. I’ve been on flights with co-workers and I can feel the announcement about to take place, and before the gate agent can even utter the words “VOLUNT-” I slam my boarding pass down so fast and say “Excuse me…did you say you were looking for volunteers?!” Too bad I wasn’t on that United flight, because it would’ve saved united a lot of money and embarrassment.
I LOVE these opportunities because they are the best options when getting free flights. I have made Platinum status on American because I volunteered and have gotten enough vouchers to get me a free flight to Japan getting me my status! Not to mention, in addition to volunteering, they re-book you on another flight, and 9 times out of 10 they get me on a direct flight to wherever I need to go, so I end up getting there earlier!
If you’re looking to get some free flights across the world, don’t be shy in asking for some compensation in the event that you’re SOL from a delayed flight. Or even volunteer and check for a direct flight to your destination. Delayed flight days are my fave! Keep in mind, you’ll get way more benefits if you are a top tier member, but it doesn’t mean that you won’t get anything. Typically if its over 3 hours then I would definitely call and ask, but sometimes if it’s even more than an hour I will call in and request for it.
This holiday season coming up will have weather delays, but don’t think you can get some compensation for those! If its a delay due to weather, they won’t offer compensation unless its their wrong doing. Mechanical issues, or even pilot scheduling conflicts, can be counted as airline error, if so, then you’re in the clear to request. I wish you good luck this season, and if you do get delayed, you can call in and get something to keep you traveling on to your next destination!