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BUD-LHR-SEA-HNL. Last leg cancelled. Options?

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  • Optimus Prime

    Hi,

    Back in April I booked BUD-LHR-SEA-HNL-LAX-LHR-BUD

    SEA-HNL has been cancelled. It is operated by Alaska Airlines. They’re still selling other flights with different times on their website but BA says the cancelled one was their codeshare and I’m not allowed to take any other.

    They’re offering to fly via LAX with just a 2-hour stopover. Since LAX would be our first port of entry in the US, we’d have to go through passport control and recheck our bags. We don’t have Global Entry so I reckon our chances of a successful transfer are zero. Besides Google Flights says that LHR-LAX flight is usually 30+ minutes late 🙂

    Both Alaska Airlines and American Airlines sell flights that would allow for a longer stopover but BA says these are not codeshares, hence not eligible.

    Do I have any other options left? I could take the LAX itinerary but if I miss the connection due to long queues at the border I guess BA wouldn’t be liable, that’d be one for travel insurance, right?

    SamG

    When is travel ? If you wait a while the codeshares should reappear . Otherwise if you miss LAX-HNL you’d be rebooked however if you’re travelling in F it might be difficult to get into F on another flight

    I’ve seen people mention that going via DFW with an overnight stopover is a decent way to do it as the onward flight is on a wide body

    Optimus Prime

    It’s in February.

    Yeah I know about DFW, asked for it but they say LAX is the only option for now.

    Also yes, the last leg is in F. 6+ hours in Y is something I’m not looking forward to 🙂

    Since I can accept a refund until the day before my trip, I think I will wait and keep checking if other codeshares come up. Or there could be a sale from another OW airline with more suitable stopovers.

    JDB

    @Optimus Prime BA is liable for the connection under UK261 even though it is on to a US domestic flight, as HNL is your final destination on the trip from the UK. In my experience, BA ground staff at outstations are good at sorting out connections but then you don’t want to be worrying about such a short connection and then hanging around for the next one. Agree you really don’t want 6hrs Y after a nice BA F flight, a better experience than most on here give credit for.

    With apologies for the digression, @SamG mentioned widebody flights to HNL. I flew UA LAX-HNL in F many years ago on a jumbo, and for that route all the cabin crew wore Hawaiian uniforms, massively generous cocktail service, then shrimp/lobster, fillet of beef carved at your seat and their signature ice cream sundae cart with loads of flavours, sauces, sprinkles/toppings etc. . No seat doors or bling, but much more fun than today’s travel.

    Jacob

    We travelled similar routing (except it was from CDG) earlier this year. I’m surprised they use the codeshare as a requirement. We had similar cancellation and BA had no issues with that at all. I even made it a single stop via DFW on the way back (HNL-DFW-CDG) all on AA numbers and metal (both 787). Long layover in DFW meant we had a chance to venture to the city to have a tour of the JFK assassination site and other bits.
    On the way there via LAX, no queues at the border and rechecking bags was literally grabbing them from the carousel and dropping them 20 meters away on a pile of other bags. We had 2h30min connection and still managed to have lunch and a shower at the flagship lounge. But I appreciate that might be different next year.

    Lady London

    JDB is correct. Unless you had more than 23hrs59mins after your official landing time in SEA, before your departure from SEA (and no earlier breaks in journey from UK/Europe that exceeded 23hr59min) then your outward journey is complete when you get to HNL and BA is fully responsible for making that complete.

    BA is *not* allowed to insist you can only travel on one of their codeshares. If they can’t or won’t ticket you on a flight of their own or a codeshare etc , that gets you to HNL as near as poss to the same time as you booked then legally they are supposed to provide travel on another carrier that is running a flight thst does it. The CAA has reminded airlines since Covid that pax rights include travel on other carriers.

    Practically, though, @SamG’s suggestion of giving it time for a codeshare to appear that lets BA continue their lawbreaking ways will give you less stress. I’d start phoning rehularly 3 weeks ahead of the new winter schedule start (that’s last week of October).

    If a codeshare or something acceptable BA is actually prepared to obey the law by ticketing does not come up by end November I would be pushing hard for the Dallas option.

    You have correctly spotted that you only get 1 chance to take a rebook per cancellation so waiting till as late as possible makes sense. You can of course also choose a completely different set of dates to make your trip (your choice of later date that works for you not BA’s choice). Again if they totally refuse you could book yourself and claim but they will make you MCOL it in an attempt to put as many people off fron getting their legal rights as possible. It would be a real pity if you alloeed BA to bully you into a refund.

    I wouldn’t accept LAX – immi there is not known to be friendly or quick. Dallas is a much nicer airport. I might consider LAX if there was a better conwction timr and only if F was guaranteed to HNL. BA would have to pay meals, hotel and transport to and from hotel if that meant an overnight and should be requested upfront to provide this ( or you’ll bill them) just so there is no ambiguity

    Optimus Prime

    Thanks everyone for your advice.

    I spoke with a couple of CS agents earlier – one said I’m required to fly via SEA because of the 300 miles rule and since the codeshare with AS is cancelled until June, I can only get a refund unless another codeshare via SEA comes up before February. Pretty sure she totally misinterpreted the 300-mile rule…

    The other one said that after recalculating the itinerary from BUD I have to go through LAX with the short stopover.

    Seems to me I’m going to need a big dose of patience with these cowboys…

    Matt

    As you’re not trying to optimise for Tier Points I would definitely go for flights via Dallas. Have you tried Chat on BA.com? I had a very good experience earlier this year getting a much more complicated trip completely re-booked after cancellations through that route. Just tell them exactly which flights you want, with the BA codeshares if possible.

    dougzz99

    I agree the best option if not concerned with TP is DFW. I know this can be stressful, but with the flight not until February I’d do nothing. They’ll be more schedule changes and all the effort you put in now is likely to be wasted effort.

    ChrisC

    2 hours is fine at LAX

    You won’t have to recheck your bags as there is a bag drop facility just after customs where they scan your bagtags and put them on the belt. You’re not having to queue up as though your starting your trip afresh.

    Even if immigration did delay you you’d still be rebooked on to the next flight. It’s not as though your entire ticket would be lost and having to buy a new ticket.

    As others have said I would wait a while before sorting the rebooking because there will be other schedule changes.

    I’d also investigate DFW because if you’re flying in business I think AA operate flights with proper lay flat seats not just recliners.

    Optimus Prime

    I’ve tried both chat and phone. It was the lady on the phone who said I still need to fly via SEA. Chat agents were happy to rebook via LAX but refuse to give me a overnight layover. There is an AA flight leaving LAX at 8:30am

    What about the 300-mile rule? Can I ask to fly to OGG instead of HNL? Asking because during the sale OGG was more expensive and I was going to book HNL-OGG on a separate ticket 1-2 days after arrival but if BA can rebook me and take me there I’d choose that. I’d save the money for a domestic flight and wouldn’t have to deal with potential changes if missed my connection at LAX

    And yes, I’m not optimising for TP’s. This trip will get me Silver, I’m fine with it.

    BTW BA.com says that BUD flights will be in T3 next year. If I had to get to T5 from there, how long would I need?

    ChrisC

    I replied to this re thr 300 mile rule but for some reason the reply has just vanished.No doubt it will appear ina couple of hours


    @Rob
    this is happenign time and time again. Why is it happening???

    On the last one MCT between T3 and T5 is 90 mins but you’ll do it a lot quicker than that. They won’t book a connection less than 90 mins

    Optimus Prime

    I agree the best option if not concerned with TP is DFW. I know this can be stressful, but with the flight not until February I’d do nothing. They’ll be more schedule changes and all the effort you put in now is likely to be wasted effort.

    Yeah, you’re right. Another unknown is whether the LHR-BUD route will remain on T5 or move back to T3. The latter would make it easier if I were able to rebook onto LHR-DFW operated by AA.

    Optimus Prime

    I replied to this re thr 300 mile rule but for some reason the reply has just vanished.No doubt it will appear ina couple of hours



    @Rob
    this is happenign time and time again. Why is it happening???

    On the last one MCT between T3 and T5 is 90 mins but you’ll do it a lot quicker than that. They won’t book a connection less than 90 mins

    Thanks. I think the shortest connection when coming from BUD is 1h 55min.

    Lyn

    A 2 hour connection in LAX is likely to be stressful even if it does work. Long queues can happen at LAX in any or all of immigration, waiting for bags to arrive, clearing customs and going back through security for the Alaska flight. However, they will rebook you on another flight as people have said above, so you could take a look at whether one or more acceptable back-up options might be available. And even these may change once or more before the date of your flight.

    Personally I’m not comfortable with less than a 3 hour connection at LAX, but I have to admit that is partly to allow a little time in the lounge after a long flight, often in economy, before getting on another plane.

    Re OGG as a back-up – I think Alaska fly to Maui from San Diego as well, although the flight probably doesn’t connect well with the BA flight.

    ChrisC

    300 mile rule is a BA thing. I don’t think it applies to non BA flights even of you booked via BA

    No harm in asking though the next time you contact them but remember the obligation is to get you to your ticketted destination.

    dougzz99

    Not that it helps you now, but in general I find AA much better than BA at rebooking after schedule changes. When BA had BWC I think they had the edge, but now I’m happier with AA again as they seem much more relaxed about helping you, and happy to book on AS prime numbers, rather than obsessing about their own flight numbers via codeshares.
    My understanding is codeshares are almost entirely manual and nothing updates reliably when the schedule changes.
    I don’t know if the revenue sharing arrangement factors in the flight code, but BA just seem entirely focused on things being on BA flight numbers.

    Optimus Prime

    300 mile rule is a BA thing. I don’t think it applies to non BA flights even of you booked via BA

    No harm in asking though the next time you contact them but remember the obligation is to get you to your ticketted destination.

    Yeah I will ask next time. Though to be honest you can’t trust their answer, the phone agent refused to rebook if SEA wasn’t available. The chat agent said another route is fine but only LAX was available.

    Not that it helps you now, but in general I find AA much better than BA at rebooking after schedule changes. When BA had BWC I think they had the edge, but now I’m happier with AA again as they seem much more relaxed about helping you, and happy to book on AS prime numbers, rather than obsessing about their own flight numbers via codeshares.
    My understanding is codeshares are almost entirely manual and nothing updates reliably when the schedule changes.
    I don’t know if the revenue sharing arrangement factors in the flight code, but BA just seem entirely focused on things being on BA flight numbers.

    You know what… I’m now praying for a ex-DUB AA sale. No immigration queues in the US and same TP’s.

    dougzz99

    I have GE so care less about US immigration. But the AA flights from DUB to PHL and DFW are both on 787s and are good services to airports with plenty of AA connections. My preferred route for the East Coast and middle of US. For west I prefer LHR as usually want TP and like the better seat on the Transcons when doing LHR-JFK/BOS-LAX.

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