I would like to pay him back....
August 12, 2019 3:10 PM   Subscribe

Yay! Finally getting cornea transplants! Nay! I have to ask family to cancel plans!

I've been on the waiting list for corneal transplants to restore my vision for a couple years now, I just got a call from the hospital that they have a match if I can do the surgery this week, this is awesome.

The bad part is my nephew (a very young 19) was set to fly out and spend a week with me. I've gotten him to cancel his flight and told him I will reimburse him if the airline will not.

The airline will not but he is resisting me paying him back (he is very much not rich), I feel it is right for me to pay him back for his ticket ($400).

posted by Cosine to Human Relations (11 answers total)
I'm sure he just feels like under the circumstances, it's not nice to take your money given that it's not your "fault" in any blame-y-you-did-a-bad-thing way. Unless he's pushing back super hard, I would either A) Send the money or B) Offer to pay for his ticket in a few weeks/months/whatever.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 3:14 PM on August 12 [16 favorites]

I like If only I had a penguin.....'s option B
posted by kathrynm at 3:33 PM on August 12 [12 favorites]

I hope I'm not second-guessing you here, but when you say that the airline will not reimburse him, do you mean that they're not going to do *anything* for him? Or just that they won't issue a full refund? Because, in my limited experience, an airline will sometimes be able to reschedule you to a later flight at the cost of a change fee plus the fare difference (if any). Much less than a full refund, but more than nothing.
posted by mhum at 3:45 PM on August 12 [3 favorites]

Yeah, assuming that they're really giving him no value at all for the ticket towards a future flight, which does seem unlikely, just pay for the ticket when he does get to come.

Good luck with the operation!
posted by praemunire at 4:09 PM on August 12 [2 favorites]

I like option b. I also like that you’re getting the procedure- it’s going to be great!
posted by kerf at 4:12 PM on August 12 [2 favorites]

Has he mentioned there's a medical reason for the cancellation? Southwest came through for me 100% when I had to cancel a flight from DFW, and I wasn't the patient.
posted by kate4914 at 4:30 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]

Most airlines will convert a canceled ticket to an account balance that can be used to pay for future flights. They will, of course, deduct a service fee from the balance. Maybe have one of your nephew's parents call the airline to cancel before next week?
posted by monotreme at 4:31 PM on August 12

Congratulations on your upcoming transplant. I think it's kind of you to reimburse your nephew. 19 can be an especially fraught time financially.
posted by missmerrymack at 5:16 PM on August 12 [1 favorite]

Good luck.

If he won't let you pay him back now then put it aside in an account or bonds or something and give it to him at a later date.
posted by RolandOfEld at 5:42 PM on August 12

Has he mentioned there's a medical reason for the cancellation? Southwest came through for me 100% when I had to cancel a flight from DFW, and I wasn't the patient.

This kind of customer service is why I fly Southwest almost exclusively! I don't have as high hopes for other airlines, although it's worth a call, and making the call is a nice thing that you could do for your nephew.

In terms of canceling the flight, in my cultural background this would be something you would talk to his parents about (yes, 19, but $400 at that age would include parental involvement if you think he's being dumb or will need the money). Alternatively, probably with their help, you could figure out something special to do for him instead of paying back the 400 in cash. But again, this is culturally specific.
posted by internet fraud detective squad, station number 9 at 5:52 PM on August 12

I would try to Venmo or Zelle it to him if that is an option for you and/or him. If he turns it down, then pay for his flight next time.

Not sure of the Airline, but jetBlue will put the money in a travel bank (less some fee).
posted by AugustWest at 8:18 PM on August 12

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