CASCADE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — A West Michigan couple is out of hundreds of dollars after Allegiant Air told them they couldn’t cancel their flight even though a family member died unexpectedly.
Bob and Diane Loyd from Dorr were scheduled to leave for a one-week vacation to Las Vegas Monday, but Diane’s mother passed away over the weekend.
“Sunday in the morning, we quick called Allegiant to find out if we could not cancel the reservation but change it to another day, and I talked with one of their representatives, and she said, ‘Well, did you purchase their insurance?’ And I said, ‘No, we did not because this was so unexpected,’” Diane Loyd said.
Allegiant Air has insurance travel protection called Trip Flex that allows passengers to cancel or modify flights up to one hour before departure without any fees. The cost for Trip Flex varies depending on the size of the purchase. For the Loyds, it would have cost around $12.
Without that insurance, reservations may be modified or canceled up to one week prior to scheduled departure, but it costs $75 per person per segment.
“If we could have changed the dates and paid the money then we had no issue with that, but the problem was that wasn’t one of our options. We were just out of the money,” Bob Loyd told 24 Hour News 8.
“A lot of times people think of Trip Flex, they think, ‘I don’t need to buy that because I don’t intend to change my trip.’ But keep in mind that flexibility is for the things that you don’t intend or don’t know are coming,” Allegiant Air spokesman Brian Davis said.
Davis said the reason for the policy is because Allegiant does not overbook flights.
“That’s just because we don’t overbook our flights. So at the time of departure, those seats are flying with or without the passenger in them,” Davis told 24 Hour News 8.
Bob and Diane Loyd say that policy is unfair.
“You can’t predict when someone dies. It’s just so sad,” said Bob Loyd.
“I think that they should do something because with the seven days, you just never know if something’s going to happen to someone. And I really think that they should change that part of their policy,” said Diane Loyd.
The two have rebooked their vacation through a different airline that offers a different policy when it comes to death in the family.
American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Frontier Airlines all have similar policies stating that if someone a passenger is flying with or an immediate family member dies, passengers can get a refund or change their ticket if the airline is provided with a death certificate.