What Does It Take To Get A Refund? Man Stopped Breathing, Airline Kept His Money [Roundup]

News and notes from around the interweb:

  • WheelsUp private jet promotion offers Delta Diamond status and miles or bonus flight credits (definitely take the bonus flight credits).

  • What does it take to get a refund from an airline? One man stopped breathing at the gate and Frontier still kept his money. Media attention finally got compensation.

    “Twenty minutes before the flight, my father’s eyes rolled up in the back of his head. I thought he was having a stroke,” she said. Her father wasn’t responsive and was on the ground at the gate. …Emergency crews were called and started working on George. They ended up transporting him to a nearby hospital. Marlene says he was doing much better after a three-day stay.

    …[W]hen Marlene tried getting that refund of more than $600, Frontier said, “it wasn’t possible to process.” In an email, they told Marlene the flight was not “canceled by our airline,”… and further, “the flight has been marked as no show.”

  • Advance reservations no longer require to go through security without a boarding pass at Detroit airport

  • Austin airport can be difficult to move through on peak days, with too many passengers for the space in the main terminal. Even without continued passenger growth things are going to get worse even though they’re adding gates.

    • Three new gates are being added for 2026 delivery, but this was intended to allow three to be closed to build a connection to a new midfield terminal.

    • By the way the ‘West Infill Project’ is where the airport and American Airlines have discussed moving plans for the new Admirals Club (which was announced in fall 2021, but then silence – location of the lounge being moved and we won’t see it for 3 more years).

    • Allegiant and Frontier will move to the main terminal when the new gates open, to allow for demolition of the South Terminal.

  • Inflight announcements unrelated to safety should never be made when cabin lights are off.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Does anyone know much commission the flight attendants get for getting passengers to sign up for the AA credit card? Also how is this split among all crew members? I heard it maybe $50.00 each sign-up?

  2. In some ways I agree with Frontier not giving a refund even though they were a bit tone deaf in their responses. This situation is what flight insurance is for. Frontier sold tickets and reserved space for the ticket holders. They flew the flight in a timely manner. Where did they assume any liability for anyone making it to the gate?

  3. Those card promotions are where AA really makes it’s money and they couldn’t give a crap whether you’re sleeping or not. You’re crammed in their Oasis seat and, damn it, you’re going to hear the pitch! And, some of you had better sign up too or next time we’ll make FOUR announcements and at a louder volume too.

    Such a far cry from the old days of TWA or Pan Am.

  4. What if the man had a heart attack the day before the Frontier Airlines flight? No refund?

    If he was dead when the flight departed, ok, refund.

  5. I must reluctantly take Frontier’s side. He missed the flight, Frontier in no way caused him to miss it. Thus they aren’t liable.

  6. As much as it does pain me, and having been on the airline side of this and delivered same decision, I agree with Frontier. This is in zero way their fault/control. Anything they do would be a courtesy. Some airlines have policies involving death of ticket holders and such, or unable to travel for whatever reason (years ago I got credits from Spirit and Delta for a trip where I was unable to travel due to in the ER and then surgery for breaking a leg…. Spirit just asked basically for an “excuse from work” type document – the customer relations agent at Spirit actually suggested that was probably the easiest for me to obtain and would satisfy what they needed – which was no problem, and Delta asked for name of hospital and doctor and date).

    But that was a nicety and I know it. Plus I asked for a credit to rebook at a later date, as I wasn’t able to determine when I would rebook at that point.

    This is, as others have said, what insurance is for.

  7. Sounds like at least one AA flight attendant on that flight seriously chases that $50 they get for each credit card sign up. I don’t blame those that do because it can be a low income job in the beginning and the company pushes the cards. But a few FAs really do take it too far….

  8. It may not always be the $50 or whatever. Could it be that they are required to do so a given number of times depending upon the flight length?

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