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#900731 by rod10
12 Apr 2015, 00:18
Posting this from the (alcohol-free) Air Canada Lounge at LAX, after a difficult and expensive check-in for our UC VS8

We are using the Dublin route and got great fares in UC. All was going well until we asked for our bags to be checked to LHR only. Agent apologised and said it was not possible... We explained we have gifts to give family meeting us at LHR and wanted access to our luggage prior to connecting to DUB but no deal, it is not allowed. Eventually, a supervisor joined the discussion and explained the change in policy "to prevent fraud" and went on to explain the fares out of Dublin are considerably less expensive than out of London... Our bags could be checked to LHR only for a fee of $215 per pax! Half an hour later and $430 lighter, our bags are checked only to LHR.

I thought I'd done sufficient research but clearly not enough.
#900732 by Hull
12 Apr 2015, 00:21
Oh dear, I'm also doing the ex DUB trick but I'm taking my BA flights to DUB as I need the TP's to attain BA AG in the summer so I finally arrive in London at 2035 tomorrow.

I'm in 17A BTW.
#900736 by Kraken
12 Apr 2015, 00:43
All the more reason to take advantage of the "24hr transfer & UK no APD loophole" or a convenient change of airport between LHR/LGW (or vice-versa). Makes through-checking of bags impossible.

As a sideline, a friend I have known for years travels on the Dark Side (mostly in J or F too - on business) and he got caught out the first time he did an ex-DUB boomerang and did not take the last sector. He was peeved too as he was paying his own cash for these flights. BA suspended his Avios/EC account and removed the miles for the part of the return sector he had flown & issued a firm warning about ticket rules.

I think his mistake was to have the entire itinerary on BA - they could easily pick up on final sectors not used. If you split it between BA & VS, there is probably a lot lower chance of getting caught.
#900737 by rod10
12 Apr 2015, 00:50
With hindsight, making our connection a day later would have done the trick and saved us the hassle and expense. Embarrassing because we convinced a friend to join us on this trip and it is his first experience of UC. Agent was kind though in allowing us to check all bags on two names so we saved something...

(Hull, I'm in 4K so will say hello at some point!)
#900738 by tontybear
12 Apr 2015, 00:52
Well this has been in the offing for a while and we have been mentioning that airlines are tightening up on short checking luggage but this is the first example I know of where it has been enforced like this.

I had thought that they might have started not posting miles and TPs until all sectors have been flown first though - but then again not everyone is in frequent flyer schemes.

This is not the end of ex-eu but if the short check charges are this high it will make some people think twice as the savings will be reduced.

To prevent this there are two options

1. Get the final leg flight for the day after UK arrival or

2. Change airports for the final leg,
#900739 by DoomWolf
12 Apr 2015, 01:25
I thought they'd either allow the short check or refuse it altogether. Coming up with a 'fee' for it sounds a little like a con trick to me (similar to a cash-only 'departure tax' that one once got sprung on me at Acapulco airport).

A little worrying though as we have no intention of returning to Dublin after flying back from SFO in October. At the time of booking I'd not considered making the final leg on the following day.
#900740 by RyanJW
12 Apr 2015, 03:25
Top tip. Just have hand luggage! It's not like you can't pick up a toothbrush and toothpaste from a CVS/Walgreens on the corner of SF :-)

With both BA and VS allowing you two pieces of hand luggage, surely there is enough clothes for at least 7-10 days!
#900743 by dickydotcom
12 Apr 2015, 07:29
RyanJW wrote:Top tip. Just have hand luggage! It's not like you can't pick up a toothbrush and toothpaste from a CVS/Walgreens on the corner of SF :-)

With both BA and VS allowing you two pieces of hand luggage, surely there is enough clothes for at least 7-10 days!

For our most recent trip to the states Mrs D managed to pack a total of 89 Kilos for the hold and I had an 8 Kilo piece of cabin luggage.

Dick D
#900745 by Darren Wheeler
12 Apr 2015, 08:55
If this a enforcement of ticket rules, The Dibb will be up in arms. There are a lot of people booking the so called 'boomerang flights' on there.

I've just looked at my ex-AMS flight from 4 years ago and cannot see anything about must take all legs, but the link back to the full fare rules does't work now.
#900747 by at240
12 Apr 2015, 09:23
Darren Wheeler wrote:If this a enforcement of ticket rules, The Dibb will be up in arms. There are a lot of people booking the so called 'boomerang flights' on there.

I've just looked at my ex-AMS flight from 4 years ago and cannot see anything about must take all legs, but the link back to the full fare rules does't work now.


The airline would argue, I suspect, that it is simply repricing the itinerary so that the price charged to the customer reflects what would have been charged had they originally bought the itinerary that they ended up flying.

The legality of this has been "discussed" extensively on the BAEC flyertalk forum in recent years, usually resulting in some pretty heated exchanges...
#900749 by David
12 Apr 2015, 09:51
Darren Wheeler wrote:If this a enforcement of ticket rules, The Dibb will be up in arms. There are a lot of people booking the so called 'boomerang flights' on there.

I've just looked at my ex-AMS flight from 4 years ago and cannot see anything about must take all legs, but the link back to the full fare rules does't work now.


Wow, 142 pages and climbing :0

This discrepancy needs addressed - it'd be interesting to find how this (huge) difference comes about. I know "some" of the difference comes from APD but is it Dublin airport subsidising connections, is it VS subsidising connecting passengersor are there other "factors" involved ?| but if the option still remains to save huge amounts of money and it includes another couple of sectors then so be it.

David
#900752 by Darren Wheeler
12 Apr 2015, 10:32
Just done dummy multi leg booking on Expedia using AMS and the fare rules etc are pretty much unreadable. All in block capitals, full of abbreviation and legalese.

I suspect it would fail the fairness test, and certainly and 'plain English' award. I've attached a PDF of it.

(141.34 KiB) Downloaded 123 times
#900755 by gumshoe
12 Apr 2015, 10:37
It'll be interesting to see whether anyone else has the same experience and it really IS a VS-wide policy change, or whether the OP just got unlucky with the check-in staff (who, outside LHR, work for handling agents not VS).

Either way, I suspect VS are completely within their rights to refuse to short check bags as they are presumably legally contracted to deliver your luggage to the destination on your ticket.

$215 or £150 is certainly an annoyance but not the end of the world when an ex-DUB UC fare to the US can easily cost less than £1,500 compared to the normal fare of £2,500+. There's still a big saving to be had. It would certainly wipe out most, if not all, of the saving on an economy fare though.
#900766 by Nottingham Nick
12 Apr 2015, 11:20
Always Chilled wrote:So what happens if you 'no show' for your LHR/LGW to DUB last leg? The way I understood it, they can't fly with a no show's luggage in the hold of the aircraft. Won't you just get it back after you've found a reason to miss your flight?


My guess is that, if they believed you deliberately caused a plane out of LGW / LHR to be delayed so that your luggage could be off loaded and the plane missed its slot, then the airline's lawyers would have a field day and you could get ready for a compensation battle. B)

Nick
#900768 by gumshoe
12 Apr 2015, 11:23
Always Chilled wrote:So what happens if you 'no show' for your LHR/LGW to DUB last leg? The way I understood it, they can't fly with a no show's luggage in the hold of the aircraft. Won't you just get it back after you've found a reason to miss your flight?


In theory, yes. If you can find it.

You'd presumably have to wait around the airport until after the flight you have no intention of catching has left, come up with a good excuse for missing it (how? You're obviously at the airport and they'll be able to see your inbound VS flight arrived hours ago), then try and track down your baggage which will, almost certainly, be airside at another terminal which you can't access. Risky.
#900769 by mitchja
12 Apr 2015, 11:48
Thanks for the heads up on this. Just added on a final EI flight DUB>MAN on the end of my ex-DUB flights (as well as the LHR>MAN flight I've already got booked separately) just in case VS say no at SFO.

At only £45 (including the baggage fee) for the EI flight, it's no great lose if VS should let me only check my bags to LHR from SFO.

EI DUB>MAN was actually cheaper than FR DUB>LPL as well :D

There's quite a lot of EI and FR flight options leaving DUB to various UK airports if people need to add them on and they are not silly money.

How VS (or any airline) can say this is fraud though is just ridiculous!!!
#900771 by Always Chilled
12 Apr 2015, 11:53
Nottingham Nick wrote:
Always Chilled wrote:So what happens if you 'no show' for your LHR/LGW to DUB last leg? The way I understood it, they can't fly with a no show's luggage in the hold of the aircraft. Won't you just get it back after you've found a reason to miss your flight?


My guess is that, if they believed you deliberately caused a plane out of LGW / LHR to be delayed so that your luggage could be off loaded and the plane missed its slot, then the airline's lawyers would have a field day and you could get ready for a compensation battle. B)

Nick


I don't believe there is any court that would push a case which involves proving beyond reasonable doubt, that someone pretended to feel unwell and couldn't make my flight. If they want to play that game, best they get ready!
#900772 by Nottingham Nick
12 Apr 2015, 12:06
Always Chilled wrote:I don't believe there is any court that would push a case which involves proving beyond reasonable doubt, that someone pretended to feel unwell and couldn't make my flight. If they want to play that game, best they get ready!


Not my area of expertise, but burden of proof in civil courts isn't beyond reasonable doubt, it is balance of probabilities and given the fact that the person involved would live England and never had any ticket booked back to the UK from DUB, I would contend it shows they never had any intention of taking the fourth flight on their ticket, and delaying the plane was a deliberate act.

However, it is probably a moot point, I doubt that they would actually go through the expense of a court case but it may not stop them issuing proceedings against a couple of people, coupled with a press release, as a deterrent to others.

Having said that, I still don't think the people who are buying the ex-EU / ex-DUB tickets are actually doing anything wrong, they are just taking advantage of a loophole in the system. It has happened for years - if the airlines attempt to close the loophole, there will often be a way of getting round it.

Nick
#900774 by tontybear
12 Apr 2015, 12:33
Darren Wheeler wrote:It will mostly likely get addressed by the EU at some point as part of the EU261/2004 regulations. There is already a proposal that airline cannot automatically cancel multi leg flights if the first leg is missed.


My understanding is that German law says that already.

BUT it also means the airline can re-price the tickets to match the journey actually flown not just ticketed.

And that could be expensive - even if they use the prices on the day you bought your ticket let alone the walk-up fare.

RyanJW wrote:With both BA and VS allowing you two pieces of hand luggage, surely there is enough clothes for at least 7-10 days!


There is a world of difference between the VS Handbag limits and the BA ones. Even in UC they are not going to let you take a bag into the cabin weighing 23KG which you can on BA.

VS limit in UC is 12KG for one piece and 16Kg combined total for 2.
#900776 by Darren Wheeler
12 Apr 2015, 12:54
I'll preface this with "I am not a lawyer, but..."

If this ever came to court, I could see the airlines winning simply because a passenger knowingly entered a contract to fly (for example) AMS-LHR-SFO-AMS. Then, having agreed to said contract, arbitrarily decided not to take the AMS leg. The argument would be that if the airline arbitrarily decided not to fly you on the AMS leg, you could claim off them.

As I say, IANAL but all it needs is someone who has the time, money and resources (a lawyer perhaps) to take this all the way.
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