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Capital One Travel Airline Tickets

I purchased our tickets on my Capital One Venture card using my travel rewards. The flight is on Delta but purchased via my points and Capital One. We are not leaving on our trip until May 1st flying from TPA-JFK-EDI. The return flight is 16 days later flying from EDI-AMS-TPA. We are growing a little nervous as each day goes by that the number of cases will continue to grow in these areas. I cannot afford to be quarantined, lose my job or my life. I called Capital One and the travel center actually laughed at me when I asked what my options were. She told me that I purchased a non-refundable/transferable ticket and I had no options. She said "you are not going to a hot area." I ask her if I had a doctors note stating my husband could not travel and she actually chuckled again. Not sure what she finds so funny at this point.

It is my understanding that Delta is offering waived fees and rebooking's for flights purchased before March 2020. Has anyone had any experience with Capital One Travel? Is there any verbiage that I could use? We may have the option to rebook for September. I can pay the difference but not lose the money I paid and get new tickets for September. She said contact Delta and see if they would offer to refund the flight or change the itinerary but I have a feeling Delta is going to tell me this is an issue between Capital One and myself.

Posted by
16581 posts

I would not assume Delta will be unwilling to help. Absolutely call them.

Posted by
16581 posts

But I think a couple of posters have reported some flexibility on Delta's part. I don't know how their situations match up with NurseCyn's, but if you don't ask, you don't get.

Posted by
11676 posts

Actually they are offering waivers of change fees for tickets purchased prior to March 9, 2020, but only for flights up to April 30. Not May ( yet).

Posted by
2902 posts

My guess is that these poor harried phone representatives get questions like yours hundreds of times a day. It doesn't excuse laughing at you or making you feel like you are being laughed at, but it does make it a little more understandable why this may have happened.

You are currently an example of "buyer's remorse." Those refunds aren't routinely made outside of a 24 hour window after the reservation was made. You wish you hadn't bought those tickets because you no longer feel that this trip is in your best interest. You are able to make this decision fairly far out and feel comfortable with it so it is difficult for you to understand why the airlines, etc. can't help you this far in advance as well.

My advice is to wait. You won't lose anything by waiting to see how the travel advisories actually turn out by the time May comes around, even if you are committed to canceling this trip. Your best bet for a refund is to wait until the airline actually either cancels the flight or offers better terms.

I am sorry for the distress this situation is causing you even though it is months away.

Posted by
5544 posts

When we buy airline tickets, we buy them directly from the airlines using our CapitalOne card. A few days later we call CapitalOne and ask them to reimburse us for the cost of the tickets using our points. Money is deposited to our CapOne account covering the costs of the tickets. So the airline and CapitalOne are separate.
When I had to cancel a flight which CapOne had covered after purchase with my points, I dealt with the airline 100%.

Posted by
5 posts

Capital One is really hard to deal with, third party travel companies always are. My trip was to Spain, in two days. The Lufthansa site was very specific about dealing with your travel agency/company first. I was on hold for 6 hours with Capital One. I spoke with a rep who was actually very nice and helpful. She had to call Lufthansa and find out the waiver policy. She said it would take 10 minutes or so and for me to hang up and she would call back. I was abit skeptical but she called me back. Lufthansa will give me a refund, it will take up to two weeks. I haven't gotten an email yet stating that the flight has been canceled, however. so am abit nervous.
Anyway, I doubt any airline would give you a refund right now since your trip is in May, who knows what the situation will be then. My trip was to Spain, a real hotbed, I figure Lufthansa had no choice but to refund. It was awful how the rep treated you, I'd report him to customer service, hard to know if it would do any good.
Good luck, I would call closer to your trip date.

Posted by
5017 posts

I'll add a couple items and offer a suggestion or two.

First, a disclaimer: I am no fan of Capital One. I believe they are a deeply dishonest company that uses extremely deceptive marketing techniques to take advantage of confused consumers. I would never, ever recommend doing business with any company that is so deceptive.

Second: Capital One's program is NOT a conventional frequent flyer (loyalty) program (one can argue that it's not one at all). The so-called "miles" you earn with Capital One are not "miles" at all in the sense that the term is used with other airlines' programs. All you are earning with them are "pennies" - literally, pennies. You get a small credit (which they call "miles") which you can then save up to use to buy airline tickets at the market rate. This is generally a terrible deal (because you are paying the retail price for a ticket, just with the discount of using your saved-up pennies). The great benefit of using real frequent flyer miles in other programs (which have historically not been directly linked to the cash price of a flight) is that you can get great value by picking and choosing wisely.

Capital One basically gives you a tiny rebate on your spending, in a form of cash, which you can then use to trade in for cash-back. You do not transfer your Capital One points to an airline (with more traditional programs from Chase, Citi and American Express, you do exactly that: tranfer your "bank" points to an individual airline's program, then they become indistinguishable from points earned and used directly in the airline's program).

(Caveat: That's the way Capital One has always worked with their so-called "miles". They recently introduced a more conventional program where you actually CAN transfer their points to some airlines, though at a relatively bad rate...I'm assuming the OP has been using the longstanding Capital One system where they earn "miles" which are actually pennies, and then they just spend them like cash to buy a ticket at retail rates.)

So in this case, it seems the airline and Capital One are quite separate. Capital One probably isn't going to do much to help (and their CS agent certainly didn't sound anything like helpful). I would stop calling Capital One and focus on the other party: Delta.

The OP needs to contact the airline (Delta) and deal with them. Expect a long hold time (there's a lot of that going around). You bought a ticket from Delta. Yes, you used a weird form of currency (Capital One Pennies) but you still paid them. So ask for (do not demand) a refund. Ask nicely, since it doesn't sound like they are required to give you one. You may (probably will) have to settle for a voucher or credit for a future flight. But it doesn't hurt to ask nicely.

I'd wait until 1-2 weeks before your departure date before trying them. They are slammed, and scrambling to cancel flights each day, trying to deal with the most immediate cancelations. Good luck and bring patience.