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Re: Family reservation partially cancelled

Top Contributor

@chgoflyer wrote:

@TheMiddleSeat wrote:

@SWDigits As you know, I don't work for Southwest so I won't pretend to know how clear they make options known to customers. I do not believe they are maliciously hiding anything. 


I've read the original post over and over have come to the conclusion it's very unclear as to what the poster was actually hoping for. I can see why you think they want to cancel, and I can also see they still want to travel. Without hearing from them again we may never know, but hopefully they got all the various opinions and can make an informed decision about what to do.




I must disagree.


Southwest isn't informing customers that they have the option of receiving a refund when their flight is cancelled. This is not shown anywhere on the cancellation notices, or the Southwest website, or the Southwest Community updates.


They are hiding that fact.


Whether malicious or not I can't say. But it's clear that customers are absolutely not receiving "all the various opinions and can make an informed decision about what to do" from Southwest. Which is why it's of utmost importance that the information is shared here customer-to-customer.


This has always been the policy - if your flight was canceled out from under you, they would offer to rebook you assuming you wanted to travel, and often without a significant change in schedule depending on the city pairs and availability of seats and preference for non-stop, direct, or connecting flights.


Of course we are in exceptional times right now and you/we/they can infer that many customers will actually want to cancel and refund under the current conditions and the offer to rebook or take credit doesn't mention the refund option which many people may not be aware of.


It would be a more transparent policy to update the wording to include all of the options before a passenger is committed to travel funds.


Eventually we'll reach a point again where the assumption is that someone who bought a ticket will still want to travel as the default.






Home airport MDW, frequent visitor to MCO to see the mouse.

Re: Family reservation partially cancelled

Top Contributor

Southwest defense will be that eligibility for refund is clearly stated in the C of C.


Problem is, less than 1% (my guess only) of the public bothers to read the thing.


Southwest is NOT being transfarent.


Re: Family reservation partially cancelled

Top Contributor

@SWDigits wrote:

@TheMiddleSeat do you know if Southwest is making it clear to passengers that a refund option is available when Southwest cancels the flight?  If they are then I'll link to that information going forward, I just don't know where to find the Southwest reference.



Unfortunately, no. They are not.


The cancellation messages only reference rebooking, and there is zero information published in any of the COVID-19 updates on the Southwest website or here on the Southwest Community that states customers are entitled to a refund when Southwest cancels. (There is also no information published anywhere regarding the option of a customer receiving a voucher for their EBCI funds.)


As I've pointed out previously, not letting customers know that they are entitled to a refund would seem to be a violation of the recent DOT enforcement order, opening up Southwest to DOT enforcement action. Apparently Southwest accepts that fact. Whether malice or "business strategy," Southwest is definitely hiding things.


This is saddening. I really thought Southwest was above playing games like this. Or, at least they used to be. 😞


From the DOT order:


Specifically, the Aviation Enforcement Office will refrain from pursuing an enforcement action against a carrier that provided passengers vouchers for future travel in lieu of refunds for cancelled or significantly delayed flights during the COVID-19 public health emergency so long as: (1) the carrier contacts, in a timely manner, the passengers provided vouchers for flights that the carrier cancelled or significantly delayed to notify those passengers that they have the option of a refund; (2) the carrier updates its refund policies and contract of carriage provisions to make clear that it provides refunds to passengers if the carrier cancels a flight or makes a significant schedule change; and (3) the carrier reviews with its personnel, including reservationists, ticket counter agents, refund personnel, and other customer service professionals, the circumstances under which refunds should be made.