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VS miles redemption with ANA first class CANCELLED

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  • kevin

    Hey all,

    I would really appreciate your expertise.

    My April ANA flight to HND (ex europe) has been cancelled – ticket was booked using miles into the suite, for which as we know is very difficult to find availability. Given entry restrictions, it really cones rather convenient that the flight has been cancelled. My question is since they have cancelled:
    1) Can I rebook to any time that is convenient for me without paying differences? Eg April next year?
    2) This was a reward flight, but since they cancelled, can I choose any date as long as there is availability in F, without the need for there to be reward flights available?
    3) When do I need to rebook by? Can I leave the ticket open as with BA?

    Thank you all 🙂

    Best,
    Kevin

    meta

    1. Yes
    2. Yes
    3. Yes, you have to inform them though of your intention.

    However, I think you’ll need to enforce re-booking that in EU court or via S75 claim. Virgin is not rebooking anyone and neither does ANA as per reports here and VS I am saying EU court as your ticket is ex-Europe, so jurisdiction is in the country where you start from. So probably best first to try and rebook via Virgin/ANA and then submit an S75 claim when/if they refuse.

    • This reply was modified 52 years, 4 months ago by .
    Thegasman

    This is definitely a case where there’s a chasm between your legal rights & getting the outcome you want.

    Meta is right that the answer to 1), 2) & 3) is Yes.

    The operating carrier is the one who is liable though & considering it’s an overseas airline, the flights don’t touch U.K. soil & the legislation is EU legislation (there may be an almost carbon copy in U.K. but it doesn’t apply in this scenario) then you’re facing an uphill battle enforcing this. There’s certainly no way you could persuade a U.K. court they have jurisdiction here.

    You would be best sending a letter threatening legal action to Virgin & ANA (if you can find an address in U.K.) & hoping either of them capitulate but accepting that following through on your threats will necessitate using the (? German) legal system.

    ChrisC

    This very scenario had come up before but I can’t think where it was.

    There may be a thread for it but it may also be PF (pre forum) so lost in a daily chat thread.

    Also check the VS board on flyer talk as it’s come up there as well.

    But the issue here is VS were only the ticketing agent whereas ANA are the operating carrier. VS may be willing to help but they are relying on ANA to do the actual remedy.

    Lady London

    It’s come up at least once in the Forum, I think twice.
    Plus at least that number of times PF.

    1. Take your time. No airline’s systems have April 2023 open to book yet. So you want them to agree they will reroute you as soon as the dates you want are open.

    2 Know why it’s reasonable for you to not be able to do the travel until the date you want. Cherry Blossom season and Holiday weeks around that time might make it an expensive date you’re seeking. Just be clear on your own situation regarding other travel dates in case you’re asked as British courts and arbitrators like you to be reasonable.

    3. From now on, in all communications and any action address these to both Virgin and ANA jointly. So both are”to” on the same email and neither in “cc”. Name both jointly as respondents in any arbitration and both jointly as defendants in an MCOL. This puts a stop to the mutual fingerpointing and walking away each will indulge in in hopes you will give up and go away due to them ignoring you and spinning it out. It also means that the only 2 possible defendants are present and the judge will say which is liable, you don’t care.

    4. You will win this if you persist. Do it quickly as there’s no point getting a judgment that can’t be fulfilled. You want a replacement ticket in your hand asap.

    99. If you paid on UK credit card, take meta’s advice and raise your claim with your card. There is a time limit for you to raise a claim for Section 75 ticket rerouting costs after you become aware (ie after the date you know of the cancellation) and it’s relatively short so do it now. If Virgin or ANA fix it voluntarily (unlikely) you can always withdraw the claim later but get it in now.

    meta

    @LadyLondon I don’t think he can go to MCOL as the ticket is ex-Europe, so it would have to be court in a country where the flight originates from.

    Really hard to enforce this one, but I think somebody said that they had success through S75 claim. It was either here or on Flyertalk.

    Lady London

    @LadyLondon I don’t think he can go to MCOL as the ticket is ex-Europe, so it would have to be court in a country where the flight originates from.

    Really hard to enforce this one, but I think somebody said that they had success through S75 claim. It was either here or on Flyertalk.

    Ah. I had seen your excellent comment above meta, and had got your point, but it had receded!

    Could we use to forum shop UK jurisdiction:
    – Was it bought on a British website with a British card?
    – Is Virgin’s head office not the UK? (and with a bit of luck, ANA’s main Europe office?)

    kevin

    Hey all, thank you so much for your help! As reliable and informative as always 🙂

    I should mention that I am a resident in Germany, so it shouldn’t be too hard to take legal action and use the channels here. I bought using Curve (registered to my UK address)- I know they don’t fall under S75, but do we know if the “equivalent” protection they provide also allows for claiming costs?

    Regarding my reasoning, the initial ticket I bought was for this April precisely to see the Sakura blooms. It should be reasonable for me to argue that the purpose of my journey should remain the same.

    Do you guys see this as risky? Should I just take the refund in miles and hope for getting availability in F for next year?

    I think ideally I want an “open ticket” so that I can book specific dates that are most convenient when the time comes, though I’m not sure if this is possible…

    meta

    I am afraid if you used Curve then no S75 protection. The link is broken. Someone might know better whether they allow claims, but if it is equivalent of how Amex deals with such cases there won’t be much that they can do. Never ever use Curve for airline tickets as they are essentially like a debit card.

    See what Virgin/ANA says, but if you’re resident in Germany it might be better to enforce it there then if you know procedures.

    As of late, ANA has more tickets available for Virgin redemptions, so you might even get lucky that they rebook you for next year without much quibble.

    Refund is of course always the option albeit risky one. If Japan opens up think the redemptions will dry up, but at this rate I don’t think anything will change until June at least in that regard.

    kevin

    Hey so a quick follow up on the above – the cancelled flight is due to take off in 14 days. Is it fine for me to do nothing with it while I decide on when to rebook it for? Or will I receive an automatic refund?

    Thanks!

    meta

    Have you informed that that you are seeking re-booking at the later date and that if they are not willing to do it, then you’re going to take them to court? They will probably issue an automatic refund, but I’d be starting the court action before the original flight. It just makes it easier all around for argument’s sake as they might say that they issued a refund. This way you pre-empt this.

    Just Nick

    Hi Kevin

    My ANA booking has been cancelled in first using virgin miles however, the flight originated in the UK. Have you had any luck resolving your query and managing to get a later flight.

    Additionally, are you able to share email and other contact details with me for both virgin and ANA. The latter seems impossible to contact.

    Nick

    Just Nick

    By way of an update, just had a very LONG call with ANA via their international call centre. They have no knowledge or understanding of EC261 and are doing everything to try and turn me away from booking new dates as they are obliged to. It is going to be a challenge to resolve I feel.

    Nick

    meta

    Go via S75 claim on your credit card. It will be much easier, but you need to get some final answer or three calls without them budging.

    Just Nick

    Hi Meta,

    Thank you for your advice on this forum and the daily chat. Really useful.

    Can I just clarify how S75 would apply in this case. I am not seeking a refund or any compensation. Would S75 in effect see me booking a new full fare for the new dates, and claiming the cost for this from ANA as they have refused to change my flights as legally obliged too under EC261.

    Nick

    meta

    Yes as they are jointly liable with ANA. I think I remember someone (on the old daily chat) being able to do just that. I believe Amex told them to just book the ticket and they’ll reimburse straight away.

    I’d contact the provider as soon as I have three nos from either ANA and Virgin. Try Virgin now and see what they say and then maybe once ANA. It might also be useful to get something in writing so send them an email or do an online chat.

    • This reply was modified 52 years, 4 months ago by .
    sara

    >Would S75 in effect see me booking a new full fare for the new dates, and claiming the cost for this from ANA as they have refused to change my flights as legally obliged too under EC261

    Yes except you’d be claiming the cost from your credit card company (who are jointly and severally liable for getting you the thing you paid for) – not from ANA. Whether they in turn claim it back from ANA or swallow it themselves isn’t your concern.

    sara

    Legally you don’t have to go to ANA or Virgin at all before going to the card provider to do a S75. But it might make things smoother (as many customer service reps aren’t fully aware of the procedure and legal rights).

    Just Nick

    Hi Guys,

    The consensus appears to be S75 however, I genuinely do not know what steps to take and what to actually ask the credit card company for.

    Am I asking for S75 to give me the circa £11k to book the later flights as entitled to under EC261 or is it something else. A long hand, step by step response would be amazing, and I am sure their are others who are just as confused as me who would benefit from this.

    Sorry to be so needy.

    Nick

    memesweeper

    If you want to rebook at a later date I don’t think Section 75 helps. It’s only for breach of contract (and some related things). Unless a court could be convinced EC261 protection is an implied term I think you’re out of luck.

    What it will cover is replacement flights in the same or similar class of travel on roughly the same dates (be reasonable) if the airline cancels.

    If your choice of replacement dates is sufficiently far into the future you can MCOL against the airline for a price of replacement tickets. That should succeed, but will take longer and be more agro than S75.

    kevin

    Have you informed that that you are seeking re-booking at the later date and that if they are not willing to do it, then you’re going to take them to court? They will probably issue an automatic refund, but I’d be starting the court action before the original flight. It just makes it easier all around for argument’s sake as they might say that they issued a refund. This way you pre-empt this.

    Thanks meta- I will certainly inform them of my intentions before the original flight, though will it be necessary to start with the court/arbitrator before the original flight date as well? If so, would I need to state the exact dates I wish to be rebooked on (which I do not yet know)?

    @LL advised for me to take my time, so I’m under the impression that I can make a demand for an open ticket.

    I plan on writing to both VS and ANA now along the lines of “in accordance with EC261, I wish to rebook my flight to a time convenient to me. I will not accept a refund.” To which they can (with court action) issue an open ticket?

    meta

    As long as you inform them, then you can take time.

    strickers

    If you can inform them try to be specific, article 5 deals with cancellation and article 8 with rerouting I think. The law would be UK261 if UK – Non EU country, at the moment it’s a complete cut and paste of EU261.

    StillintheSun

    Hello all,

    I’ve become a little geekily obsessed with the EC Flight Regs having my own CEDR arbitration ongoing. Section 75 if oft mentioned but I have struggled to see how it would automatically be of use here and so read memesweeper’s comment above with interest. This is claim for breach of statutory duty (the EC Flight Refs) and not a claim for breach of contract.

    Section 75(1) of the Consumer Credit Act 1974 reads:
    “If the debtor under a debtor-creditor-supplier agreement falling within section 12(b) or (c) has, in relation to a transaction financed by the agreement, any claim against the supplier in respect of a misrepresentation or breach of contract, he shall have a like claim against the creditor, who, with the supplier, shall accordingly be jointly and severally liable to the debtor.”

    Thus the Act specifically confines the liability of the credit provider to breaches of contract and/or misrepresentation by the product supplier. I also thought as memesweeper did that the purchaser would have to argue that it was an implied term of the contract that the airline would comply with its obligations under the EC Flight Regs. I know not if there is any legal authority as to the answer on this. I might do a little research if my curiosity gets the better of me!

    At first blush the Section 75 argument does not appear cut and dried, worth arguing certainly but speaking personally I would not incur potentially thousands of pounds in an alternative non-refundable ticket unless I was willing to also pursue the airline through the appropriate national courts to assert my EC Flight Regs rights.

    It would be really interesting to hear if anyone personally has succeeded in this argument with their credit card company. I’d give it a go if I faced the same situation but would not be surprised if I had fight with Amex or whoever on my hands!

    StillintheSun

    I’ve just done a quick google and Which magazine have a template letter for use against a credit card company where the airline is refusing to refund a cancelled flight. Interestingly it asserts that the breach of EC Flight Regs is a breach of contract without specifically asserting that compliance with the EC Flight Regs is a breach of an implied term. Which’s support for this approach is reassuring!

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