Troubleshooters: Complaints over Frontier's refund policy taken to airline

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- The airline industry took a huge hit when the pandemic shut down America.

Thousands of flights were canceled, leaving consumers to call for refunds.

And while complaints against airlines have skyrocketed, one in particular has had the lion's share.

We have heard numerous complaints about Frontier Airlines. Consumers telling us Frontier is holding their money for flights they never took.

The Troubleshooters hosted a Zoom call with consumers who say they are fed up with Frontier.

These consumers want money back for flights canceled during the coronavirus pandemic, ranging from $400 to over $1,700.

All say they contacted Frontier for refunds to no avail.

Frontier is offering vouchers for future travel, but consumers say the windows to re-book are too short, in many cases just 90 days.

This at a time when many flights are unavailable or limited, and when uncertainty remains about the coronavirus.

"I don't know how to book a flight when it's really not safe to go anywhere," consumer Shannon said.

The Troubleshooters took these consumers' complaints to Frontier who had this to say, "...we have remained in full compliance with Department of Transportation rules governing flight changes, cancellations and refunds."

Airline expert Scott Keyes of Scott's Cheap Flights says it's important for consumers to know their rights.

"Know that under federal law, if the airline cancels your flight, you are entitled to a cash refund if you want one," Keyes said.

But if you cancel a flight, the airline is not mandated to give you your money back.

Keyes says during the pandemic, many airlines are giving refunds even when the customer cancels, but Frontier has distinguished itself by continuing to refuse to do so.

"Frontier was one of the single most complained about airlines," Keyes said.

There is some hope for these viewers.

Frontier is apologizing and making at least two promises, saying they "...will be reaching out to those customers directly to work with them to address their concerns, including offering credit extensions so they have an opportunity to rebook travel."

Meantime, Philadelphia law firm Berger Montague has filed a class action lawsuit against Frontier calling for customer refunds.

"There's a host of schemes that we think that Frontier engaged in to try to get around their contractual obligations," John Albanese of Berger Montague. "And we will try to recover as much as we can for as many people as we think is feasible."

When we asked about its short booking windows, Frontier says, "...travel does not need to occur within the period the credit is valid for. The customer simply needs to book travel by the expiration date. Travel can be scheduled all the way through November 2021..."

The airline also says about half the customers the Troubleshooters sent their way have already successfully redeemed their credits.
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