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KLM "Significant Schedule Change" - UPDATE Refund received!

Hi All, We are scheduled to leave for Greece on KLM September 11th. Obviously the chances of that happening are slim to none. I have been patiently playing the waiting game, assuming KLM will eventually cancel so that I can ask for a refund. I had one hotel already cancel as they have decided to remain closed for the remainder of 2020.

I was checking the schedule about a week ago, just to see if they were still showing flights at that time. I did not see our flight so I logged on to my booking. They now have me scheduled to depart 2 days later on the 13th. Considering their own contract of carriage states delays of 3 hours or more may be refunded, this certainly should qualify. However, they currently are still showing a flight departing Boston on 9/11 only 2 hours earlier connecting to my original 2nd leg, thus getting in at the same time.

I still feel it is highly unlikely either flight will go - so my question, would you recommend to call the airline (or request through their website) now to try to obtain a refund or continue to wait for them to cancel?

Thank you,
Joann

Posted by
6539 posts

I would not hesitate to ask for a full refund due to a significant schedule change (2 days is quite significant). The other Boston flight is immaterial, just say that no alternatives work for you.

Posted by
7122 posts

If I were in your place I would call/contact the airline and ask for a refund pointing out they changed your booking by two days.

You could try the website to see if that gives you a refund option. If not, then a call seems to be the next step

I would not say anything about the flight leaving 2 hours earlier. Its odd they did not put you on that.

Posted by
278 posts

Thank you. I agree - I thought that was odd as well, but hopefully that works to my advantage! I'll give a call tomorrow - before the weekend rush :p)

Joann

Posted by
2170 posts

I will take a stab at the reasoning for what they did. Yes, there are a host of flights on codeshares they could have put you on, but you must have been on a KLM-operated flight, which was dropped So they switched you to the next KLM flight they could, rather than onto another (even though codeshare) flight. Appears that you have full grounds for a refund, you might be more certain of quick satisfaction if you call rather than make a web request. 800-618-6104, which you have to dig for, I did not see it on their web page.

Just had something similar with our American Airlines trip PHL->EDI and DUB->PHL. AA dropped their service between here and London. And even though they could have offered a convenient switch to their partner BA, still out of PHL, and to connect with the same BA flight in London, they offered a ridiculous rerouting through JFK - to then get on BA metal anyway - because this started with an AA flight to JFK. Went the cancel and refund route, took them about a week to cycle ti through their end, and then couple more days to get back to the card.

Posted by
3110 posts

Joann, I second the advice to call and get the refund. You certainly qualify due to the significant schedule change. The language I believe you are looking for is, " I don't accept this schedule change and am requesting a refund." When I recently dealt with the same issue with Luftsansa, they made me say those exact words for their recording. I would not even bring up any alternatives. Simply said that the schedule change is not ok, and request the refund.

Do not go through website!!!

Posted by
278 posts

@Larry - thank you for the tel#. You're correct, I didn't see it on the website when I took a quick look. And yes, I was on KLM on the way and KLM/Delta for the return which hasn't yet changed. That would make sense.

@Carol - thanks for the heads up on the language. I will be sure to say exactly that!

Joann

Posted by
627 posts

You should have no trouble with a refund. Delta changed the first leg of my trip -home airport to Atlanta - leaving an 8 minute layover prior to an Air France flight to Paris. Their website just noted I could get a voucher but when I called I pointed out the change and said I wanted a refund. No problem at all getting the refund initiated. She just said it could take up to 30 days to show on the credit card.

If you are willing to get a voucher instead -- try and get a bonus on it. With possible price increases next year it might prove helpful. I wanted the money for some home repairs since I'm stuck here for the moment and so that the air for the rescheduled tour can be booked thru the air dept at the tour comp we use.

Posted by
4454 posts

Same experience here with British Airways. After a significant schedule change, we got a full refund with no problem. It did take a while, but there was no question but that we would get it.

Posted by
3045 posts

Joann: Just to be clear did you buy thru klm.com? You should only be dealing with the website from which you purchased the ticket. If it's Delta.com then see the adjacent topics about Delta, the wait for refunds on Delta has become months for many. Since Delta has a 2-1/2 hour change full refund policy, I assume it's KLM.com that you used since you state that the change policy for your ticket is 3 hours.

I believe that even if you bought from klm.com, when you call KLM from a US phone number you will automatically be connected to a Delta phone rep acting on KLM's behalf, but I am not sure.

Posted by
278 posts

Hi Tom, Yes, I did purchase the tickets on KLM.com. That is who I will be calling.
Thank you,
Joann

Posted by
162 posts

Just to confirm what what others have said about calling and not going through the website for a refund. We had booked with British Airways for the 2 week England Tour in June and then waited till our flight was cancelled so we could pursue a refund. We received the email which indicated that for the refund to follow a link. I had been on the BA website leading up to this and found the phone number in the small print for customer service/refunds. I did not follow the link in the email, concerned I would be led into a rabbit hole I could not back out of. I called the phone number, was connected quickly and in 10-15 minutes I was done and our refund arrived on the next credit card cycle. In conversation with the assistant I mentioned the link marked refunds that was provided in the email. He commented that it was just as well I had not followed it. I did not question him further but took it that I was not going to get what I wanted or it would have been a more difficult process.

Posted by
178 posts

Same delay happened to me. My wife and I were scheduled on a October 1st Condor flight from Seattle to Frankfurt. I received an email from Condor delaying our departure until October 3rd ... a two day delay. I called and told them I wanted to cancel. No hassles, and my full refund was returned to my credit card in two days. BTW, I booked directly with Condor rather than an agency.

Posted by
278 posts

Thank you all so much. Good news - after a relatively short wait on hold (20 mins), the agent processed my refund request in less than 3 minutes. No questions asked. @ Carol, After stating that KLM had made a schedule change, I took your advice and read your sentence word for word.

The refund will take 30 -90 days, but I won't be going anywhere that soon anyways.

Thanks again!

Posted by
2329 posts

Expect 90 days. Be delighted if it comes earlier.

Posted by
278 posts

UPDATE - The refund was credited to my CC today. I had put a reminder on my phone to follow up the end of October, but here we are only 3 weeks out and I received it - very impressed!

Posted by
4454 posts

Joann, what good news! Thanks for updating us. We're still waiting for one refund...