Things With Wings

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  • Finding Fares Fast
    Posted by Andrew Compart 5:30 PM on Dec 01, 2009

    The story that legitimately grabbed the headlines is how some pressure from the U.S. Transportation Department convinced British Airways to increase its compensation to customers who booked a $40 U.S.-India fare mistakenly posted by the carrier, then had their tickets canceled by the airline. British Airways, which originally offered only a $300 voucher for U.S.-India travel if booked by Dec. 3, now will also reimburse the customers for any related cancellation fees they incurred on hotels, car rentals and other flights. It also will cover additional costs incurred by customers in rebooking flights due to fare increases on previously held flights that were cancelled in order to book the $40 fare.

    Almost lost in that news is how fast customers found this fare, and the price British Airways is paying for not having a system in place to make sure it was removed from every distribution channel immediately. As the Transportation Department noted in its press release, British Airways realized its error nearly immediately and removed the fare from its own Web site within minutes. It remained on the Web sites of some online travel agencies for about two hours, however, and fare shoppers found it fast: In that short time, more than 1,200 bookings were made for approximately 2,200 passengers.

    Tags: tw99, fares, BritishAirways, India

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