Hotwire Forgets To Tell Passenger Her Flight Was Changed Three Months Earlier

Hotwire sent a confirmation e-mail in November for a Thanksgiving flight that no longer existed.

Hotwire sent a confirmation e-mail in November for a Thanksgiving flight that no longer existed.

When you book an airline ticket through a service like Hotwire, you’d expect that either the airline or the booking site will notify you when something important — like a flight being changed or cancelled — happens, especially when that change is made months before takeoff. But a couple in Virginia had their travel plans twisted around when Hotwire failed to let them know that their flight no longer exists.

The passengers recently told their story to NBC 29 in Charlottesville, VA (go Hoos!).

Back in July, they had used Hotwire to book Thanksgiving travel plans from Charlottesville to Colorado Springs, but when they showed up at the airport to make the first short leg from C’ville to Dulles International in Washington, D.C., they were told there was no longer a United flight from Dulles to Colorado Springs.

The best they could do was a flight to Denver, which would require them to drive the hour-plus south to Colorado Springs after they arrived.

They reached out to Hotwire to figure out what happened. Reps at the site said they would “research” what happened, which led to rounds of finger-pointing between Hotwire and the airline.

After several weeks of no one providing an explanation for how this happened, United finally produced evidence that it had alerted Hotwire to changes to this route back in August. That bit of important news was never passed on to the actual passengers.

In fact, Hotwire sent the passengers a confirmation e-mail for the now-nonexistent flight in mid-November.

The site tells NBC 29 that it’s looking into the matter, but the passengers say they will never use Hotwire again.

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  1. RupturedDuck says:

    And in those three months they never checked and verified their reservations?

    • kjh says:

      Yes, they did.

      “In fact, Hotwire sent the passengers a confirmation e-mail for the now-nonexistent flight in mid-November.”

      • RupturedDuck says:

        I guess I wasn’t clear enough. When I book airline flights I am regularly checking for any potential changes to my itinerary. I *never* rely that the airline will inform me of changes between the time I purchase my tickets up until I actually fly. If I used Hotwire or similar I would be checking Hotwire and the airline with the same due diligence.

        That the airline notified Hotwire, but Hotwire did not not the customer until months later, Hotwire dropped the ball. But the customer still should have done their own due diligence. I give 70/30 that Hotwire needs to wear this one.