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Southwest stranded my 12 year old: Will they reimburse?

Explorer C

This past week, SW canceled my daughter's solo trip home from Providence on Tuesday (after a few hour delay), and on Wednesday (from the outset), and then on Thursday they changed her layover to Orlando, then delayed... by the time she got to Orlando she was hungry and tired... and waiting for her next flight to come in from NYC.


There was no weather in NYC, but it was about 9pm before the plane finally took off. She was due to land home in New Orleans at 1:45am. I drank coffee. Her plane gets into Orlando after midnight. Rather than board up for NOLA, they cancel it. I'm guessing the flight crew said "No Mas," rather than fall asleep and kill 150 people, including themselves. But wouldn't they have known that back in NYC?? At 9, 10, or 11pm?


So now everyone, including my daughter is swarming the desk. I'm on speaker phone, asking for a hotel and food voucher for my kid. "Sir, I'm trying to re-book all these flights...."

She tells me there is nothing for 3 days.

Meanwhile I'm trying to get a hold of a friend in Orlando.


The agent gets her on a flight the next day, through Ft. Lauderdale.

My heroic friend Desmond shows up 30 minutes later, and they wait forever for her bag and cello to get through the carousel.

The story ended up safe and sound enough, with Desmond taking care of everything.


Southwest has been so good to me over the years, but this week was so full of stress and aggravation. If it were me, I would have had short patience but have a credit card at all times. Being my kid, all I could do is hope and pray. I'll be getting her a credit card in the future.

I couldn't even get a hold of anybody. 90 minute wait times. Of course its a super busy travel time. 


Anybody go through something like this with their Young Traveler?


They should have refunded that ticket and given a voucher on the spot.



Re: Southwest stranded my 12 year old: Will they reimburse?

Aviator A

Sorry to hear that you and your daughter   had to put up with that. Hope she is ok.


If I were you, I would contact customer relations and relate the story. I'm guessing that you'll be offered a voucher





Weather has been a problem for Southwest and other airlines. It has impacted a whole lot of SW customers recently.


As far as the specifics of your  daughter's situation goes, weather could have impacted the NY flight even though there was no bad weather in NY. There could have been bad weather at any of the cities the plane visited before getting to NY - causing the delay. Same with the crew that was to fly the plane.


It is VERY unlikely - almost impossible - that the orlando crew said "we're too tired to fly." The FAA has strict limits on how much "flying time" the cockpit crew can work. It is likely that, since the plane out of NY was already late and it was already after midnight, the crew likely "timed out" and it would have been illegal for them to fly the last leg of the flight. 




Re: Southwest stranded my 12 year old: Will they reimburse?

Frequent Flyer A

The domino effect can be played out in many ways, as mentioned above: Weather here, weather there, crew timeout, no aircraft, etc. DM SWA for some assistance and they'll reply ASAP too.

Community Champion | LGA based | Companion Pass Holder | Southwest Passenger