The airline returned to an oversold flight, and after a Delta flight to Iceland was oversold to 30 people, one traveler left with a $ 4,500 voucher.


A long airport route at Delta check-in.

A long airport route at Delta check-in. Drew Angeler / Getty

  • Airlines will return to oversold flights as demand surges, and some leaflets can be expected to hit.

  • A man on a plane from Minneapolis to Iceland earned $ 4,500 credits to board the next plane.

  • When travelers have to spend the night, airlines often offer meals and hotel vouchers.

  • See other articles on Insider’s business page..

Americans flying this summer will face not only long lines, but also oversold flights.

Travel demand has skyrocketed to its highest level since the pandemic began, and airlines have returned to full-capacity flights. Flights are often oversold, hoping that not all passengers will appear.

The system often works because passengers miss flights for a variety of reasons and airlines can keep extra income from selling more seats than they have.

But it’s a bet that sometimes airlines lose and lose big.

Andy Luten was ready to fly Delta Air Lines from Minneapolis to Iceland on Thursday. It was when the gate agent announced that it was oversold to 30 passengers.

“I got to the gate, and everything was fine,” Luten told the insider. “And they said,’We’re in an oversold situation.’ It’s a holiday weekend and it’s not surprising because it’s Iceland.”

Iceland was the first one European countries open to vaccinated American tourists, And airlines like Delta is adding flights to the capital Reykjavik To meet the increasing demand. However, due to bad weather, the Boeing 757-200 needed more fuel and could not carry more passengers.

Bidding for passengers to board the next flight began at $ 500 and was raised to $ 700 because none of Delta’s agents raised their hands. If a sufficient number of passengers do not volunteer, the airline will unintentionally be denied boarding and rely on what is known to “bump” passengers from the flight.

In that case, the Ministry of Transport has guidelines on how many passengers can receive cash compensation, depending on the length of the delay. For Luten, the next flight to Iceland departs in 24 hours and is entitled to 400% of the one-way fare for up to $ 1,550.

Luten said he knew he was “at the top of the bump list” because he booked his last round-trip ticket for $ 465 in the basic economy just three days before his flight. Airlines take all these factors into account when deciding who to hit.

Ultimately, Delta offered $ 1,500, then $ 3,000, and finally $ 4,500. “Wow,” he said, the first person to receive a $ 4,500 voucher started a high five.

Luten also got $ 4,500 after first telling Delta’s agents that it would cost $ 1,500, but he didn’t even do his best. A family of five in Mississippi has left with a total compensation of $ 22,500.

Normally, $ 4,500 can only be used to book future flights for airlines, but Delta allows you to choose a gift card on the flyer. Some of the offers are from American Express and visas, and you can spend $ 4,500 in much the same way as cash.

read more: United’s CEO argued that it was not a problem for airlines to keep burning tens of millions of cash a day for months.

Since there were no other flights to Iceland that night, passengers were given a free hotel room in Minneapolis and a round-trip transportation voucher to get there. Meal vouchers were not provided, according to Luten, but passengers are likely to request them the next day when returning to the airport.

Some ways travelers can hedge to avoid bumping on a full flight are to check in as soon as possible, arrive at the gate on time, and book the trip well in advance. As Luten discovered, holiday weekends are the main oversold, and flexible travelers can take advantage of it.

“Everyone will arrive in Iceland a day later, which will be $ 4,500 or $ 22,500 more,” Luten said.

Read the original article Business insider

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