Denver-Based Frontier Airlines Under Fire for Bailing on Refunds
You might be able to understand Frontier's decision if it was the customer who had canceled their flight and wanted their money back. However, this is not the case.
As with many things this year, the reason behind the airline's actions is COVID-19. Many airlines ended up having to cancel flights because of the pandemic; which is understandable, but wave of cancellations over the last few months have done a lot of damage.
According to the New York Times, the way things normally when a flight is cancelled is that the customer would then get a refund for their cost of the flight. Besides the economic sense of that exchange, it's actually the law, too, called a 'contract of carriage' where the customer and the airline agree to terms.
One of those terms is that customer will get a refund if the airline cancels the flight. Which seems pretty simple. But not anymore, evidently.
Frontier is one of several airlines that decided to add in a clause to that contract in April, right when all the COVID cancellations were starting. The clause states that customers can't put together a class-action lawsuit against the airline. Which is what many passengers might do if, say, they found out they weren't going to be refunded for a cancelled flight.
I guess that's legal, but it hardly sounds fair, however.
So now, for example, say Steve had a flight on Frontier that had to be cancelled. Instead of giving Steve his money back, they offer him a voucher, which he needed to use within 90 days.
To me, and to folks like Steve, 90 days seems kind of 'limiting' considering that here we are, nearly four months in from when the pandemic hit, and Americans still aren't excited to fly.
So, Steve's only way to fight Frontier is on his own, which in the end, will end up costing him much more than that plane ticket itself.
Here are some other folks, like Steve, who have a beef with Frontier:
Get more on the legal battle between Frontier and its customers from the New York Times HERE.