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Icelandair flight cancellations - anyone know what happens next?

My fella and I are booked on an Icelandair flight from Seattle to Reykjavik (continuing to Stockholm) next Sunday. The same flight has been cancelled several times over the last few weeks, and we're wondering what might happen if ours is cancelled as well. For example, can we hold out a hope that we'll be rebooked or rerouted within a few days' time? (Knowing, of course, that the rebooking could be cancelled just as easily...) We tried and tried and finally got through to the airline, but they couldn't/wouldn't tell us what we might expect in terms of waiting to reschedule, etc.

Does anyone have any suggestions/strategies for dealing with the possibility of a flight cancellation? Or ways of establishing contact with a real person who will do more than read to us off the airline website?

Many thanks, and happy and safe travels to all,

Posted by
1525 posts

I don't have any answers for you except to point out that the biggest problem with your flight is the fact that it originates from Seattle. With flights that originate farther east, IcelandAir has the option to land their planes in in Glasgow, Scotland and use that as a hub instead of Reykjavik. I don't think their planes can get from Seattle to Glasgow without refueling.

We are flying with them from Mineapolis in 4 weeks and we are hoping this isn't a problem for us either. On the bright side, id does seem that they are getting better at judging how much risk there really is and cancelling fewer flights as a result.

I really hope everything goes well for you!

Posted by
20 posts

My boyfriend flew out of Paris on Icelandair to Boston and his flight was delayed a day due to the ash in Iceland. All he did was call Icelandair and they quickly helped him get booked on the flight out the next day.

In terms of flying from Seattle to Iceland, there is the possibility that they might be able to get you to Boston, and then on a flight from Boston to Glasgow (if the ash is a problem that day). Boston is a huge hub for them on the East coast so there is the small possibility that they might divert planes there. Just keep checking the Icelandair website everyday before your trip. They post detailed updates about all their effected flights.

Posted by
524 posts

IcelandAir CAN get you from Seattle to Iceland without going through the Keflavik airport, IF the Akureyri (Iceland) airport is open. Sometime it is and sometimes it isn't, depending on volcano plume direction. If that is the route you go, you will fly from Seattle to either Boston or New York, then to Glasgow, then to Akureyri, and then take a 5 hour bus trip to Reykjavik, and potentially the same trip in reverse to get home. Of course, both Akureyri and Glasgow could be closed by the volcano, so no guarantee even that itinerary (which consumes a lot of time) will work.

We recently returned to Seattle from Iceland and, because Keflavik was closed, were offered the itinerary described above. It would have involved an overnight at Glasgow airport and another at JFK. We would have had to leave Iceland mid-day Sunday to get home on Tuesday. We declined the offer, spent 3 extra days in Iceland, and came home the normal way after the wind shifted (the extra 3 days were a great bonus!)

As of today, all airports are open and operating normally, and hopefully will continue to be so through your trip. If you run into cancellations, you can contact IcelandAir for a refund of some expenses. And it IS possible to talk to a real IcelandAir human by calling an agent at their customer service number. We did that several times and they were (mostly) very polite and helpful, despite not having any better prediction than anyone else what the volcano would do in the coming days.

Good luck, be flexible, and have fun. You'll enjoy it! I'd do it all over again!