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  1. #1

    Default Continental Airlines does it again .......

    Well once again, Continental attempted to ruin our trip to CSA ..... Two years ago with a couple of weeks to go, I get a call at 1:00 a.m. from Orbitz to tell me that Continental has cancelled the flights out of MoBay for the weekend we were returning. But the good news was (sarcasm) that they had modified our flights to fix the problem. Our connecting flights were now scheduled for the day BEFORE our departure flights ..... And this was supposed to fix things.

    Flash forward to yesterday ..... I had checked our reservations over the weekend and realized that after the weekly changes in flight times, we were now booked on a duplicate flight out of MoBay. Same flight number but different times. I called Orbitz and waited while they tried to contact Continental to see what the problem was. I was then told that I wouldn't make my connecting flight due to the flight out of MoBay but they would try to find another. Waited longer and then was told that sorry but there were no flights out of MoBay on that day....... but I could cut my trip short and come back a day earlier. No thanks !! I figured I would rather change my reservations and stay a day or two longer at CSA than leave early but still not flights available.

    Finally the Continental rep found a flight on US Airways on the original date we had planned. Problem solved ...... NOT QUITE ...... While checking my new reservation with US Airways, I wanted to select my seats. Surprise ..... No seats available together for my wife and me. UNLESS I upgraded to "Special Seating". So now I am out another $40 ..... Oh yeah, and they charge for all checked baggage, even the first bag, so another $50 at least .......

    This is the last time I will ever fly with Continental, even if I have to pay more .......
    Proud palapa hoarder since 2007 !!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    39

    Default

    I had a similar problem with Continental a few years ago when we were going on a cruise. I just happened to check the status of our flights on Continental a few weeks before we were due to leave and they had changed the time of our return flight home so that we would not have had enough time to get off the cruise ship, go through Customs, and get to the airport to catch the flight. Our original flight was due to leave around 2pm and they had changed it to 10am without even notifying us! If I hadn't gone on the website to look, I would have never known. Thankfully, our travel agent was able to get us off that flight and book our return flight on Southwest at a similar rate.

    D&J

  3. #3

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    markandjannett:

    Wondering what were the original dates, flight #'s of your Continental flight?

  4. #4

    Default

    UGH!!!!! We have stopped booking through Orbitz, Expedia, etc. I have found that they are sometimes the problem and the airline treats you poorly when you book with them. Like they have a big red X by your name. I also book directly with the hotels too. 4 years ago we got Amex Delta skymiles credit cards and use them all the time. Now we can use miles for payments or have silver status and get upgraded to first class for no charge
    Worth a look into. Have a blast at CSA 4 months till we arrive wooohooooo

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Posts
    47

    Default

    ....and another great reason to book with a Travel Agent.....
    Team Leegion

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    26

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    242

    Default

    A few things...from someone who travels almost weekly

    1. Continental would have charged you to check your bags as well, almost all major carriers do (and some charge for carry on) unless you have status with CO (and if you do, call US Air and ask to match)

    2. The week prior to your trip start checking the seap map (daily). Us Air upgrades their elite travlers starying at 7 days out. So as those ppl move up front, you can reserve their seats.

    3. I agree with the rest of the posters, this seems to be a common occurance when booking with these 3rd party sites. I suggest booking directly or via a travel agent. In fact, if you have any further issues I could just call the airline directly.

    Safe travels,
    rachel

  8. #8

    Default

    Our flight out of MoBay was on Sept. 3rd on flight 1485. I think the biggest problem is being a weekend flight. On the previous flight we were told they were cutting back on weekend flights and were canceling Sunday flights. When I asked about changing the dates this time there were no flights available for Sat., Sun., or Monday ....... Next year we will avoid flying in and out on the weekend .....
    Proud palapa hoarder since 2007 !!!

  9. #9

    Default

    Actually it was Orbitz that alerted us on the previous trip .... I normally make all flight and hotel reservations myself and only use them for guidance on prices and availability. I have booked the previous few flights for the price guarantee, although I have never gotten one .... lol

    9 Days to go !!
    Proud palapa hoarder since 2007 !!!

  10. #10

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    No luck around here ...... I have tried booking my flights through the local travel agent and they wouldn't do it for the flight alone. We would have to book an entire trip or they didn't want to deal with it ......
    Proud palapa hoarder since 2007 !!!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    316

    Default

    This is exactly why I use a real TA. I see the real problem is that after being screwed one time using Orbitz you used them again. We had a flight issue on a last flight, called the TA and she adjusted our CSA dates to accommodate the change, at no additional charge.

  12. #12

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rachlm927 View Post
    A few things...from someone who travels almost weekly

    1. Continental would have charged you to check your bags as well, almost all major carriers do (and some charge for carry on) unless you have status with CO (and if you do, call US Air and ask to match)

    2. The week prior to your trip start checking the seap map (daily). Us Air upgrades their elite travlers starying at 7 days out. So as those ppl move up front, you can reserve their seats.

    3. I agree with the rest of the posters, this seems to be a common occurance when booking with these 3rd party sites. I suggest booking directly or via a travel agent. In fact, if you have any further issues I could just call the airline directly.

    Safe travels,
    rachel
    First bags have been free in the past on Continental, Delta, and some others for international flights.....

    Trust me, I check the flights and seat maps almost daily when it gets this close .... 8 days

    I actually prefer booking the stay through Couples .... The local travel agent won't do just the airline portion ...
    Proud palapa hoarder since 2007 !!!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    344

    Default

    markandjannett we book our CSA trips, hotel and flights, with a Couples approved TA. She keeps on top of things for us and even waits to book our flights when she knows the fares should be at their lowest. Hopefully things will settle down for you and you'll have a wonderful time in Paradise, aka CSA!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    38

    Default

    Great! Now you all have me freaking out. We are flying Continental and they've already changed our flight times 3 times! They have all been really small changes, but now I'm worried for something big!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    253

    Default

    I like the DIY approach best. A few years ago we used a TA (at a national business) and she messed up our reservation to CSS. I much prefer to book directly on Couples site.

    As for flights, I usually book those separately so that I can monitor the price fluctuations (Yapta) and then book directly with the airline. On many, but not all, airlines the first checked bag on an international flight is free. With Delta, we receive an email immediately if our itinerary changes, even if the flight is months away, and there is an option to change your reservation. Definitely worth investigating how each airline manages these issues as nowadays flights seem to be rescheduled or cancelled frequently.

    Hope all works out and you have a great vacation!

  16. #16

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ORV View Post
    This is exactly why I use a real TA. I see the real problem is that after being screwed one time using Orbitz you used them again. We had a flight issue on a last flight, called the TA and she adjusted our CSA dates to accommodate the change, at no additional charge.
    While I may not be a huge fan of Orbitz, etc., I don't think it's really their fault when an airline cancels flights ....
    Proud palapa hoarder since 2007 !!!

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    956

    Default

    We have booked flights with US Air for our last two trips to CSA, June of '10 and '11. On both trips our return
    trip out of MoBay was delayed or canceled all together and we spent an hour at the MoBay ticket counter trying
    to find an alternate flight back home. First year we wound up on Continental through Houston. Last year we were put on an earlier US Air flight that left us with a long layover in Charlotte. No additional charges for either flight, but the headache of scrambling through unfamiliar airports, short or long layovers and the general
    disappointment of having a flight change literally at the last second was enough. I don't know what you can do about such things. We are at the mercy of the airlines and they seem to know this very well. You make plans, read the schedules and make your purchases carefully to allow time and for everything to coordinate. Then the airlines just start pulling things apart. I think we are lucky to make it there and back at all sometimes.
    I would say that for those Couples guests that complain about the early departure from the resorts to MoBay on the day of departure, you are lucky that they have the foresight to get us there early enough to get through these apparently inevitable flight changes that are becoming more and more common. They are coming up as subjects on the message board at an alarmingly regular rate and I don't know what or how this trend may be changed.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    316

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by steveg52 View Post
    markandjannett we book our CSA trips, hotel and flights, with a Couples approved TA. She keeps on top of things for us and even waits to book our flights when she knows the fares should be at their lowest. Hopefully things will settle down for you and you'll have a wonderful time in Paradise, aka CSA!
    I think they prefer to book through Couples. There's been thread after thread about the pros and cons of each method. To each their own I guess. At the least I would book direct with the airlines and cut out the middle man.

    A few years ago airlines cut out the travel agents on commissions. That is why they won't book flights unless it is with some other type of package.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    316

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by markandjannett View Post
    While I may not be a huge fan of Orbitz, etc., I don't think it's really their fault when an airline cancels flights ....
    True, but if you book directly with the airline you can deal directly with them to find a more suitable replacement. It seems to me from your original post you're just adding a level of confusion by booking through Orbitz as in this statement;

    " I called Orbitz and waited while they tried to contact Continental to see what the problem was. "

    I generally book directly with an airline or have the TA book it, which I can also talk directly with the airline when they do. It's too easy for a airline CS to blow off a third party vendor. When they change your flights there are certain rules they are required to follow if pushed on it. When you are dealing directly with them it's easier to be forceful and get what you're entitled to, not what's easiest for a CS person to do.

    I've never understood using Orbitz, I don't see any savings.

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