Help Me Hank! Travel Vouchers
Help Me Hank: Help Me Hank! Travel Vouchers
Too many travelers and not enough seats - itís a bad situation that can have a happy ending.
If you're a flexible flier, when a plane is overbooked, you can often cash in by giving up your seat - thatís just what Pat Barry did.
"We volunteered to get bumped," Barry said.
And being a 2002 bumpee brought Pat a fat travel voucher.
"I had $1500," Barry said.
Pat could go anywhere - as for when, that was also up in the air. No one mentioned the travel vouchers would expire.
"I just assumed that it was gonna be good for whenever I wanted to use it," Barry said.
Pat finally decided on a 2005 springtime trip to the sunshine state and went to book her free tickets, but the airline clipped her wings.
"They told me the vouchers had expired," Barry said.
Pat knew they had an issue date, but that was all.
"I scoured over the vouchers on the back and the front and there was no expiration date on them," Barry said.
Would her hopes of sun sand and palm trees disappear? Would she be stuck in the Boston rain? As ticketed travelers bustled around her, Pat went into full battle mode.
"I spoke to the representative and asked to talk to a supervisor and pleaded and begged and everything else, and they told me that they were no good and that was their policy," Barry said.
It seemed her $1500 in vouchers had become just worthless pieces of paper.
"I was at my wits end so I called Help Me Hank," Barry said.
We know airlines can have any bumping rules they want, but they certainly have to inform the passengers and there was not even a hint on the vouchers about expiring after a year.
We explained Patís plight to airline execs and eventually they emailed this explanation saying they admit they'd found some "old" vouchers that don't include expiration dates.
Soon after, this airline apology arrived at in Pat's mail...accompanied by brand new vouchers
Now Pat's packing for April in Florida
"I just canít wait to go baste in the sun," Barry said.
Her trip, the more tantalizing because it's free free free.
"Florida here I come," Barry said.
Peak travel season is prime time for bumping, so if you choose to give up your seat, make sure you first know exactly what you're getting in return.
(Copyright 2005 by WHDHTV 7News. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)