What if your confirmed booking is suddenly cancelled by the airline like Cebu Pacific? What options do you have? How much are you going to pay to rebook your promo flight?
Hunting for Piso Fares and Promos
Our travels, husband and I, are plan months in advance. We have the destinations and dates plotted early in the year. Why? Promo fares favor the prepared. 🙂 If you want to be among the first to book during piso fares and red hot seat sale events, you got to have a ready list of your preferred travel dates.
We booked last April one way ticket from Manila to Cebu for 2 persons during a P100 base fare promo of Cebu Pacific. Travel dates are December 31 at 6:30PM. We bought the tickets 8 months in advance. Yah that long basta lang maka-promo lol. After sharing the flight details with friends and family, the immediate reactions are ‘Goodluck sa delay!’, ‘Hala! Mag New Year mo sa eroplano!’. Lol.
You may remember that Cebu Pacific was slapped by CAAP with 52 Million Pesos in fine due to the flight delays and cancellations that transpired during the 2014 Christmas flight rush. Turned out Cebu Pacific overbooked several flights, and as a consequence, tons of passengers missed celebrating Christmas day with their families.
Cheapskates that we are, Titus and I figured we’d rather risk a delayed flight on December 31 rather than pay premium for highly coveted flight schedules. Filipinos typically go home to celebrate the Christmas and New Year holidays with families in the provinces. High demand = High Ticket Prices for flights near Christmas Day up to New Year.
For the two of us, a regular flight would have cost us between P3,000 to P4,000 one way. With our December 31 late afternoon flight, we only paid a total of P1,296 – this is for one way for two persons with 30 kilos of check-in baggage. Mura talaga, lol.
Trial Booking Cebu Pacific Ticket for December 29 for 2 PAX
*Snapshot above taken September 18,2015; the cheapest available flight for Manila to Cebu with check-in baggage for this day.
Schedule Change Advisory
AND THEN…. I received an email a few days ago with subject line “Schedule Change Advisory” from Cebu Pacific. It reads “Cebu Pacific would like to inform you that your flight has been cancelled due to schedule realignment. However, we have mounted another flight which you may take in lieu of the cancelled flight. “
This proposed schedule will leave an hour later than our original flight schedule. What if there will be more delays? Baka sa ere na talaga kami abutin ng New Year 2016 hehe.
Good thing that Cebu Pacific offered rebooking options for our cancelled flight. If you have received a similar advisory, know that you have options. You do not need to ACCEPT the offered new flight if it doesn’t work out for you, or if doesn’t fit your schedule.
The options given to us by this airline are the following:
- Rebook without charges for travel within 30 days
- Put in Travel Fund ticket value without penalties (except for KOREA flights)
- Refund without penalties
- OR you can also ACCEPT the new flight schedule.
‘Yes! Cancelled yung flight natin!’ grinning I told Titus.
The cancellation of flight originated from Cebu Pacific themselves, therefore I can rebook our tickets without penalty to the travel date and time that we want – as long as it is within 30 days of the original booked date and there are still open seats left. Yes! =)
I called up Cebu Pacific Hotline number at Manila (+632) 70-20-888; you can also contact them via Cebu hotline at (+6332) 230-8888 . I spoke with their CSR, and have successfully rescheduled our flight to our preferred date – December 29, and we didn’t pay any additional fee. Sweet!
What if you want to cancel your flight on your own accord?
If there is no cancellation advisory coming from the airline, and you want or need to rebook your promo ticket. This is my suggestion on what you should do:
First, wait for a new promo. Every so often, Cebu Pacific announces a P500 pesos all in fare – this is a good deal. Once there is a new promo fare announcement, go to www.cebupacificair.com and search a promo ticket that matches your new schedule. Do a trial booking, take note of the total cost of ticket.
Second, call the Cebu Pacific hotline to talk to a customer rep. Ask the csr how much total fees you are going to pay if you will rebook or reschedule the confirmed ticket that you already have.
Based on our experience, rebooking a promo flight cost more versus buying an entirely new ticket. This is because you have to factor in penalties like rebooking fee and fare difference charge. If this is the case you are facing, just forget about your old ticket, and buy a new one during a promo fare. Charge it to experience, ika nga.
*Promo tickets are non-refundable, but rebookable.
Waiting for Seat Sale
The most popular promo is the piso fare from Cebu Pacific. Air Asia’s version is called the Red Hot Sale. We are hoping that before the year ends, there will be available piso fare for 2016 travels. That’ll be fantastic so we can all fill our calendar next year with affordable flights. While we wait, plan your travels ahead.
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