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Can't Get Out of N Iraq; Will AA Accomodate Missed Connection?

Can't Get Out of N Iraq; Will AA Accomodate Missed Connection?

Dec 2nd, 2006, 11:22 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 3
Can't Get Out of N Iraq; Will AA Accomodate Missed Connection?

I was supposed to fly from Northern Iraq to Frankfurt on the morning 19 December, and then from Frankfurt to Denver on 19 December at 14.10. However, the charter airline (Kurdistan Airlines) changed its flight to 20 December, so I won't arrive in Frankfurt until 20 December at 5.30a. The problem is that Kurdistan Airlines only flies once a week out of Iraq, so my only choices are 13 December or 20 December.

Two questions:

American Airlines indicated I would have to buy a new ticket to fly on 20 December, which costs more than double my original round-trip fare. I know technically that's the policy, but if I show up on 20 December and explain the situation do you think they would accomodate? I'm basically missing a connection by about 14 hours, but there's no way Kurdistan Airlines is going to pay a fare difference; it's not the most professional carrier and it's a charter.

How difficult would it be if I show up on 13 December and explain the situation to fly standby? I'm not thrilled about this option because I'll miss a week of work, but it's better than being stuck in Germany for six days.

I realize official policies are that airlines don't need to accomodate you if it's not their fault, but airlines have been nice to me in the past in extreme circumstances. (Like during the NYC blackout, when I tried with all my might to make my flight but couldn't.) Do you think AA would accomodate me in this circumstance?

Thanks, TCR
TCR is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2006, 02:33 AM
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 5,950
Why not contact AA directly & explain the situation?
Carrybean is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2006, 04:53 AM
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interesting first post
gail is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2006, 07:35 AM
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To clarify, this is AA and not UA? AA does not fly FRA to DEN - non stop, UA does.

If it's AA, call the international desk. You're most likely going to have to pay much more money to change the ticket at this late stage in the game. Stand by won't be an option as it's not same day travel.
mjz is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2006, 08:53 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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AA is pretty good about accomodating troops and/or contractors working in the frontlines.

I would call AA int desk, ask for a waiver, calmly explaining your situation. If you don't get the answer you want, don't argue, as that usually results in a note in your PNR and that's that. Just thank the agent and hang up. Call again, and again, calmly (don't demand) asking for a waiver.

I can almost guarantee that you will get a waiver to change a flight without a fee.

Good luck!
AAFrequentFlyer is offline  
Dec 3rd, 2006, 10:11 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2006
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Thanks so much for your replies. Thankfully Kurdistan Airlines worked out something for me today so I don't need to fret over it anymore. I had called AA yesterday and the agent on the phone said I'd have to buy an entirely new ticket, but I thought they might accomodate me upon arrival. Anyway I'm glad I don't have to worry about it anymore! Thanks again for your input.
TCR is offline  
Dec 4th, 2006, 05:31 PM
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 867
TCR, Can you tell us why you're in Northern Iraq? And why it would be better to be there than spending 6 days in Germany?

Most people I know in Iraq (and probably even those I don't know) would rather spend 6 days anywhere but Iraq....
sunshine007 is offline  
Dec 4th, 2006, 10:45 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 269
Do you have travel insurance that will cover the change? My AmEx insurance will cover events like this.
OT is offline  
Dec 16th, 2006, 06:50 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 3
Hi again from N Iraq,

Sorry, after my last post I stopped checking. The logistics nightmare continues ... Kurdistan Airlines has changed the schedule again (I feared this would happen) so even with the airline's last "fix" of my situation there's no way I'll make my connection to the U.S. (again.) I'm sure there are problems with the airline and its scheduling, but we've also heard that Turkey is making it difficult for the Kurdish airlines to fly over Turkish airspace ... ugh.

I'll check with my credit card but I used my Visa, not my AmEx. I booked on Orbitz; when I called AA about this nearly two weeks ago, they wanted me to book a new ticket. The ticket prices are increasing dramatically, of course, because it's closer to Christmas. I'm a freelance journalist working in N Iraq, so six days of work was extraordinarily important for my stories.

Thanks, T
TCR is offline  
Dec 16th, 2006, 08:08 PM
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 45,322
Hello TCR, I am sorry to hear about your problems trying to get home. It sounds like a nightmare!

I do hope that somehow this will work out as I am sure you want to be with your loved ones for the holidays. Best wishes and stay safe!!
LoveItaly is offline  
Dec 16th, 2006, 10:06 PM
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Good luck and stay safe!
sunshine007 is offline  
Dec 18th, 2006, 07:04 AM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 377

You might consider taking Austrian Airlines out of Erbil and connect in Vienna to Frankfurt. They have service on Mondays & Fridays. The Monday flight to Vienna (OS #830) leaves @ 5p., so if you could leave on the 18th, it might be a much better option. And, although I haven't taken Air Kurdistan, I've got to believe that Austrian would offer a safer, more reliable and better product. I have taken Austrian, and they're one of my favorite international carriers.

Good luck!
LT is offline  
Dec 24th, 2006, 04:28 PM
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 867
TCR -- what happened? And what is your name & where can I find articles you've written?

Merry Christmas!
sunshine007 is offline  
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