JetBlue Cancellation Last Minute Booking
To be human is to make mistakes. Unfortunately I seem to be more human than others since I make a ton of them. 🙂 One thing I had never done though was book a flight for the wrong date. That all changed the other night.
As I was waiting for my wife to call to be picked up from the airport upon her return from Mexico City, I decided it was a great time to rush and purchase an upcoming flight from Los Angeles to Orlando for our Disney World portion of our Disney Around the World trip! I love JetBlue and have a ton of their points from the defunct Amazon promo, so it worked out perfectly or so I thought.
The Big Mistake
Unfortunately in my rush to get this book before heading out to the airport I selected the wrong date. Ugh! I booked the flight just after Midnight and then rushed to the airport to get my family. The next morning I awoke and checked my confirmation to find the date was wrong. Normally this would be an easy fix, however there was another wrench in this scenario.
You see, it seems lately that I am allergic to booking anything in advance. This is an issue I am dealing with :), but it almost screwed me here. JetBlue does allow cancellations within 24 hours, however the flight needs to be purchased more than a week in advance. My flight was only a few days away.
Begging For Forgiveness
I wasn’t able to call JetBlue right away, so I waited until the evening to give them a call. My goal was just to switch the flight to one day earlier. Same flight. Same time. Same everything. Spoiler: It actually went about as easy as it could have!
Upon reaching an agent after about 5 minutes on hold, I explained the situation including my dumb mistake and the date discrepancy. Without hesitation the agent quickly confirmed she would cancel the award redemption and return my points immediately. There was no mention of it being a last minute booking and the refund was quick and painless.
I have always had wonderful interactions with JetBlue customer service and this time was no exception. The agent quickly completed the refund and then I was able to go online to book my flight for the correct date. After confirming the date a few times, I came across a very pleasant surprise. The flight had actually dropped in price!
When I had booked the flight the previous night both dates were the same price, totaling out 51K points for the three one-way tickets. Fortunately prices had dropped since my booking and I was able to lock-in a new cost of only 41K points for the direct flight. Screwing up the date saved me 10K points!
What You Need to do For EVERY Travel Booking
This post is a good reminder of best practices to use on every travel booking. Whether it is a hotel, car rental, cruise, activity or flight you should do the following:
- Make sure you get a confirmation of your booking in writing. I used to print these out, however these days I just keep them handy in my email in case I need them later.
- Check the names, dates, addresses and any other relevant information to make sure everything is correct. Do this AS SOON as you receive the confirmation. Most mistakes can be fixed if caught right away.
- Make sure everything you were promised (Free breakfast, other perks, etc.) on the booking is reflected somewhere. Think of this as a contract. If you don’t see something notated email or call and notate that correspondence as evidence of what you were told.
This scenario is a reminder of one other strategy that it is probably smart to use. Most airlines (and many travel agencies) allow cancellation within 24 hours on airfare bookings. It probably doesn’t hurt to check prices during the 24 hour period after booking to see if they have gone down. If they have you can cancel and rebook to save!
My habit of booking last minute almost backfired, but fortunately checking everything after booking served its purpose and helped me catch this error in order to get it fixed without issue. JetBlue also proved once again they have stellar customer service. I just wish they were bigger on the West Coast!
Have you ever booked a flight or hotel for the wrong date and had any issues getting it fixed? Share your experiences in the comments!