Airline Apologizes After Refusing To Refund Refundable Ticket

Cancun trip goes down the drain until NBC 5 Responds stepped in

What was supposed to be a romantic Valentine’s get-away to Cancun took a nasty turn when Michael Talarico tried to get a $2,300 refund on two refundable American Airlines tickets.

Talarico found the tickets on the airline’s website, put them on hold while he secured a hotel room, and then went back and clicked purchase. That’s when he noticed something odd:

"The seat had changed from refundable to non-refundable," Talarico said.

He was charged $400 less than first quoted. Additional money he told American he’d like to pay to re-instate the refundable status. The airline agreed. Weeks later, he was glad he did.

"My wife found out her job wouldn't permit her to take the time off," Talarico recalled. 

A sigh of relief quickly turned to disbelief when American balked at the refundable part, giving him back only the $400 differential. 

“After countless emails and faxes because American Airlines has no phone number to contact the refund department,” Talarico told NBC 5 Responds. “It was just like butting my head up against the wall." 

When NBC 5 Responds contacted American Airlines, a spokesperson quickly agreed “refundable” means all of the refund. The airline apologized for what it called a clerical error, and sent Talarico the remaining $2,300.

"I probably would never accomplished it if it weren't for NBC 5 Responds," Talarico said.

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