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Charge for flight change because of not enough time for connecting flights

As a woman of a certain age who is not a fast walker, I was worried that the 1 1/2 hours I was given to make a connection in Boston from a Delta flight to Air France headed for Paris would not be enough time for me. I read some of the entries people had sent in for another person with a similar worry about making connections. So I called Delta and was given a Delta flight from Raleigh-Durham to JFK with a 4 1/2-hour layover before meeting an Air France flight to CDG. Then the agent said that change would cost me ca. $500. Because I really want to make this trip, I agreed. Now I am thinking I did something pretty dumb. Don't tell me I really could have made the original 1 1/2-hour connection in Boston. I really am a slow walker! Is this rather large change normal? Last fall I was charged $1.50 to get two additional days in Paris. Go figure!

Posted by
19209 posts

The $500 was the price difference from the cost on the day you purchased the original itinerary, to the new cost on the day you made the change. Prices change quickly. I think you jumped the gun on making the change.

Posted by
2308 posts

Is it too late to go back to original flight and get money back?? If you can do that, request wheelchair service so you won't have to run fast and they will zip you right on down to your connecting flight. I agree that is a lot of money for a change. Best of luck.

Posted by
7674 posts

You bought a ticket with restrictions; those kind are the least expensive and charge a flat $200 change fee + the difference in the price of the original and new ticket price when you change.

Posted by
2052 posts

Good luck, but next time ask for a wheelchair and you then won’t miss the flight unless your arrival is too late.

Posted by
1179 posts

Jazz+Travels, I don't see where the OP said she bought a Basic Economy ticket.

Posted by
59 posts

Actually, back in June I paid for Economy Plus. Then in the fall Delta began sending daily flight changes. If I can get a real person on the phone rather than waiting by the phone for four or five hours, I will ask if I can actually get my original flight scheme with a refund of the $500; but I am not holding my breath. Thank you all for your advice!

Posted by
19209 posts

Looking at May 13, I saw a 1:25 pm flight from RDU to Boston with a 1 hour and 57 minute connection time to the Air France flight. Even if a flight delay caused you to miss the AF flight, there is a Delta flight an hour later also going to CDG.

Posted by
124 posts

I find using Twitter and posting to the Delta twitter account gets a much faster response from Delta than calling them on the phone. It may take 1-2 hours but they will send you a private message link. You can then give them the information about the flight and changes. I communicate with Delta via twitter and have much better response than on the phone or website. '

Posted by
1088 posts

If your original ticket was from one airline (either Delta or Air France), I would have just kept with that schedule. if there wasn't enough time for you to make your connection, it would have been their responsibility to get you on the next flight. If they were two separate tickets, the responsibility would have been yours. Maybe this is water under the bridge now.

Posted by
6 posts

Don't beat yourself up. I think you made the right decision.

I used to live in Boston. Delta uses Terminal A. Air France uses the international terminal which is Terminal E. The two are not connected and you have to take a bus from one to the other. It could take as long as twenty minutes to wait for the bus and then make the trip. And you would have to go through security again in Terminal E.

So add it all up: waiting to get off your flight to Logan, getting to the bus, waiting for the bus, the trip to Terminal E, going through security at Terminal E, and then getting to your gate. That could take quite a while. If your flight to Logan is delayed, then there is a good chance you'd miss your connection. Better to pay the $500 and eliminate all the stress and worry.

BTW, I'm somewhat in the same boat. I'm going to France in June. I'm flying into O'Hare where I switch to a CDG bound flight. Both are on American Airlines. My layover was reduced to 2 hours due to a rescheduling. I tried to change my flight into O'Hare so I'd have a longer layover, but was told I'd have to buy a new one-way ticket all the way to CDG that would cost almost as much as my existing round-trip ticket. I let it go as I was assured that my AA flight to CDG leaves from the same O'Hare terminal where I arrive (like at Logan, most international flights at O'Hare depart from an international terminal which isn't connected to the other terminals), and it appears from the map that the AA terminal is not huge (unlike at Dallas-Fort Worth) and I'm a fast walker. But given all the times my flights have been delayed, I always try for a very generous layover to eliminate worry and stress.

Posted by
27 posts

I have had airlines change flights on me (happens quite a bit lately). When it occurs I reach out to them and explain the impact and can I “adjust my flights”. This has worked 100% of the time with no cost. They do try to make it sound like they are doing me a favor (and they are a bit I guess) but in reality it is their reshuffling that causes the impact.

Sample impacts that I have had luck in getting airlines to adjust my flight without incurring additional cost:
1. Flight departure moving from mid afternoon to early AM
2. connecting layover reduced below 2 hours
3. Layover going from about 2 hours to over 5

Posted by
1088 posts

Actually, some of the above info re: Boston is incorrect. Boston Logan only uses terminal E for flights "from" France. Not the ones to France. Terminal E is where all international Immigration occurs. I have never seen a Delta or Air France flight depart from there.

Posted by
59 posts

Thank you, Richard77, for your uplifting note. I did try again early this morning (5:30) to reach Delta to see if the airline could at least give me a discount on the $500 charge for my plane change. But, when I heard the recording saying the wait would be several hours, I hung up. At least I tried. Then your note arrived. I feel so much better, and now I can spend those extra hours between flights non-stressed, just looking forward to a wonderful time in France.

Good luck on your upcoming trip. Bon voyage!

Posted by
607 posts

Yikes! Sally, if the airline has changed the flight they should offer you something else and not charge you. Ideally, you should check online and find what you think is the very best option regarding connections and ask for that. Using United miles I booked a flight on Swiss air, SFO-CDG with changing planes in Zürich. Was scheduled to arrive at CDG at 6:30 p.m. Swiss air then changed the arrival time to 7:05 PM. Only 35 minutes difference but the airline is the one who made the change. I called United and not only did they change my flight they gave me the best possible flight which was a nonstop. No charge. They actually refunded me $4. A week later I checked my American return flight which had been CDG to LAX on Air Tahiti Nui then AA to SFO. They changed the time on the 2nd leg. Resulting in a layover of 7 hours 45 minutes! And I would arrive at SFO at 11:25 PM. Not good. So I called. They changed the flight to all AA metal, changing planes at DFW and getting in at 6:30 p.m. Definitely better. I would call Delta even if I was on hold for 5 hours. There might be an option for them to call you back. That option works with United. I would explain the situation as I believe you should have been told by Delta that it was their responsibility to get you on another flight where you would have enough time to make the connection. Seems like they're shirking their responsibility.
BUT after reading these posts I'm thinking that my connection time at DFW is only 2 hours 15 minutes and I imagine I would need to go from an international terminal to a domestic terminal. Also have to go through customs etc. and then recheck my bags. So… Will I miss my flight? What do you think?