Exchange plane tickets
March 6, 2011 5:54 PM   Subscribe

Just bought a non-refundable, non-transferrable American Airlines ticket... to the wrong city.

Bought the tickets on via Hipmunk. Stupid, stupid mistake. I plan on calling them tomorrow to talk to somebody. Am I really S.O.L. though?
posted by Plug Dub In to Travel & Transportation (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I would call ASAP. I wouldn't wait til tomorrow. I think you have a better chance of getting the mistake fixed immediately after the transaction.
posted by mercredi at 5:55 PM on March 6, 2011 [3 favorites]

Agreed, call now - it will be fixed (less than 24 hrs) and all will be ok.
posted by hapax_legomenon at 5:57 PM on March 6, 2011

Almost every airline gives your 24 hours to cancel. Unless they've changed policies American is one of those airlines. The only airline I can recall that doesn't allow it is JetBlue. I'd call now, they should have people at the reservations desk 24/7.
posted by iamscott at 5:57 PM on March 6, 2011

I bought some Delta tickets at the wrong time once, and they were good enough to cancel them and let me repurchase, at no cost to me -- but I called in five minutes after buying them, and am a Delta member.

American has people on the phones 24/7. Call them now.

Even in the worst case, you can, I am certain, get the flight changed to the correct city. You will pay a change fee and the difference in price between the two itineraries. What you're going for is waiving the change fee, or else canceling the itinerary outright.
posted by kindall at 5:58 PM on March 6, 2011

I'd also call the airline right away. My employer did this once and they changed it at the airport for me and just charged them the difference in price.
posted by fshgrl at 5:59 PM on March 6, 2011

Yes, upon further Googling it looks like American *is* the odd one out that doesn't have a 24 hour refund policy (just 24-hour hold).
posted by iamscott at 6:00 PM on March 6, 2011

Yes -- these policies are designed to keep you from changing your mind, not to keep you from correcting a true error. Call ASAP and you should be okay.

Caveat: hopefully you actually did buy at If Hipmunk is set up as a reseller, you could have more problems, or least have to get too sets of CSRs in agreement with each other.
posted by MattD at 6:02 PM on March 6, 2011 [1 favorite]

Definitely call right this second -- I once screwed up buying tickets and they managed to fix it because it hadn't actually gone through the system yet (probably less than 5 minutes since I had bought them).
posted by brainmouse at 6:04 PM on March 6, 2011

Response by poster: Ah hah! Called, all is well. Much thanks to all of you.
posted by Plug Dub In at 6:10 PM on March 6, 2011

American *is* the odd one out that doesn't have a 24 hour refund policy

If I recall correctly the policy at American is that either party can cancel until the reservation is ticketed, which is when the contract is formed. At American this usually happens in a matter of hours.
posted by grouse at 9:41 PM on March 6, 2011

I'm a frequent AA flyer. They do in fact have a version of a 24-hour refund policy that I've found in practice is even more generous than that:

You can "hold" a reservation, thereby guaranteeing the price, without actually purchasing it on It claims it's for 24 hours, but in practice I've found it can be close to up to 48 hours because they will often hold it until 11:59 pm the next day (i.e. if I make a ORD-LAX reservation at 10 am CST Thursday the hold generally doesn't expire until 11:59 pm CST Friday, for almost 38 hours). You can cancel the hold at any time during this period easily without penalties and they make it clear when you put it on hold when it will expire.

Once you've actually purchased a reservation, you then can cancel without penalty until the reservation is ticketed, but this will be in a matter of hours and you'll have to call AA, whereas you can cancel holds by simply going online.

I actually prefer this policy to the other airlines', as there's something psychologically good about not actually giving them my money when I'm not sure about it, there's functionally often over 24 hours to consider it and I've never had an issue with a hold.
posted by andrewesque at 6:33 AM on March 7, 2011 [1 favorite]

« Older Finding the distributor cap in a Ford Econoline   |   Wifi, Cell Phones, and You Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.