When dealing with questions of dropped fares and nonrefundable tickets ("If Fares Drop, Fliers Are Due a Refund--Maybe," Travel Insider, Dec. 5), I send my clients to the Web site http://www.rulesoftheair.com, which contains the rules of carriage of all the airlines. By explaining passengers' rights when it comes to delayed and canceled flights, it has saved my clients hours of hassle.
But people still have to stand up to the agents at airports. One client recently paid an airline $75 to change his ticket to the next earlier flight. They canceled that flight, couldn't or wouldn't put him back on his original flight and then wouldn't refund the $75. The airline eventually consented to the refund, but not before he refused to leave the desk without it.
I call clients to tell them about lower fares as often as possible. In fact, it has occurred to me that the better I do my job, the less money I make! But I have a faithful following of repeat customers, so I must be doing something right.
VILMA J. SCHURR
Hyde Park, Ohio
There are travel agent software packages that handle the fare-reduction issue. In our company we have one that checks every record between midnight and 2 a.m. If the fare has dropped, it informs the booking agent. We reissue tickets almost daily for travel credits. During major air fare wars, credits back to our customers are in the tens of thousands of dollars.
As you stated, the airlines aren't going to call you. Just a few more benefits of using a travel agent.