Delta Made Me Miss My Flight, Only Refunded $18

A layover on a three-leg flight forced Jon to rent a car in order to get to his destination on time. Delta promised him a refund on the part of his itinerary it botched, but it only gave him $18 because it based the refund on mileage rather than the cost of his ticket.

He writes:

booked a 3 leg flight on Delta from Boise, ID to Rochester, Mn by way of Salt lake, City and Minneapolis, MN. My leg from Salt Lake boarded late and then when it landed in Minneapolis, it pulled into the wrong gate. We sat on the tarmac for 20 minutes before they decided to let us off the plane. As a consequence, I missed the last leg of my trip (Minneapolis to Rochester). Unfortunately, this was the last flight of the night and I had to be to Rochester first thing in the morning. The gate attendant told me the best she could do was book me on the following day’s first flight–which wasn’t going to work for me. I informed her I would rent a car and drive to Rochester (its a 2hr drive) and she assured me I would be refunded for the flight I was never able to take but that I would have to call their customer service number during business hours as she could not issue me the refund at the gate. When I called to secure my refund the next week, I was informed that they would only refund me $18.00.

When I asked why it was such a small amount, the customer service rep informed me that it was a “pro-rated” refund. When I asked her to explain, she said that the refund was based upon the cost per mile traveled. I found this highly dissatisfying for multiple reasons.

First, the cheapest 1 way flight between Minneapolis and Rochester I have ever seen was $207.00 ($229 with fees and taxes).

Second, I spent almost 3 times that amount renting a car to reach my final destination (not to mention, I was exhausted for my meeting the following day).

Third, when I purchased that ticket, Delta essentially made a commitment to me to get me to my destination and failed to deliver on that commitment as a result of their own mistakes–hence, their failure to deliver on their commitment should have resulted in a gesture that was at the very least equal to the expenses I incurred completing the trip. I feel incredibly cheated and will never fly delta again. If you are going to fly, I’d recommend you avoid Delta and fly an airline that actually cares about their customers.

Any tips for Jon to get a more reasonable refund?