Fare Dropped $200 on Orbitz

Sep 16th, 2008, 08:38 AM
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Posts: 8,862
Fare Dropped $200 on Orbitz

Hi, I bought my ticket to Buenos Aires on Orbitz and it's dropped $200. Is it possible to get some kind of refund? I think Orbitz only gives $50 back? There's price assurance but someone else needs to book the same itinerary to trigger this....

Is there any recourse?

The flights are on AA. I suppose I could call AA but I'm sure they will tell me to deal with Orbitz.

What if I cancel the ticket and buy a new one?
111op is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 08:52 AM
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 489
I believe they have a guarantee to match the price and refund the difference:
Check with them
Paulchili is offline  
Sep 16th, 2008, 09:01 AM
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That's the thing -- someone must book the exact itinerary for the refund to be triggered.

It's really more of a hoax than anything, in my experience.

So I called AA, and AA could issue a credit, but if I rebook I'd have to pay a change fee of $200. So in this case it's pointless. However if there's a credit left, AA will issue a voucher. I think this applies even if the ticket is booked through Orbitz.

The reason I say the Orbitz guarantee is a hoax is because airfares change very quickly. When I checked it dropped $200, I called AA. When the agent pulled it up, she showed $1700 then $1300 then $1700. Orbitz then showed $1500 when I checked.

So someone would have to book the fare at exactly the time when the fare was actually $200 lower for me to get the refund. What are the odds of that happening?
111op is offline  
Sep 17th, 2008, 05:50 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 5,525
Had the same problem with Orbitz when I booked my son a ticket on Emirates. The Orbitz agent said that the flight went down almost $200 but that there was a clause that Emirates would allow money back...what?
dutyfree is offline  
Sep 17th, 2008, 05:52 AM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 9,089
Greetings 111op.

Ah yes, the strange and wonderful and as you found, frustrating world of the airfare seat 'auction'.

This is the only way to really see air ticket sales, as an auction. You bid on an item believing that this was the best price at which you could secure the item - only to see the 'auctioneer' drop the price on succeeding sales of similar items.

Of course, the price went back up again the minute enough of the bidding audience expressed an interest -- and getting a surge of interest was the whole point of the 'teaser' price - which probably went to only a very few lucky 'winners' that didn't necessarily, in fact obviously didn't, book that price on Orbitz. That's what Orbitz seems to 'forget' to emphasize to customers in the description of their price guarantee - that they don't have an exclusive on those lower priced seats. As you have just realized, the reference to "another customer" in their guarantee means another Orbitz customer, not another customer of the AA database as a whole for that itinerary. Their reassurances are accurate enough, it's just that their reassurances aren't that meaningful. Ain't life fun?

Take heart from two things: if the price had gone UP by $200, neither Orbitz nor the airline could demand from you a refund, to be followed by re-issuance of the ticket only at the higher price.

Second, you have your ticket, you're headed to Buenos Aires. Now stop checking airfares, it'll drive you nuts. Bon voyage!
Sue_xx_yy is offline  
Sep 18th, 2008, 07:57 AM
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Well with the plunging equity markets, I've been checking my portfolio instead. Checking ticket prices is more fun, I assure you!
111op is offline  
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