COVID-19: Trips canceled, but no clear refund policy

COVID-19: Trips canceled, but no clear refund policy
Posted at 6:29 AM, Mar 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-27 09:29:58-04

Travel policies are changing around the clock. If you cancel one day you are out money, but the next you could be getting a full refund. No matter the policy, a bit part of getting what you want is being able to contact the company you booked with.

Beke Lubeich was planning a company retreat to Israel, but when the Coronavirus travel restrictions closed borders she knew the retreat was not going to happen.

"I understand things are changing all the time, but to not be able to reach anybody for weeks on end," said Beke.

She had booked employee trips on a site called Booking was easy; canceling was not!

"I've gotten basically four different responses in trying, and I've been trying to cancel for about two weeks now," said Beke.

In the end, one trip got a partial refund. One got a credit. Another a credit minus administration fees, and the last Beke couldn't even cancel.

Now the cancellations were made on the same day, so why the different outcomes?

Beke says the third-party site has no clear policy and we understand the hassle. The Let Joe Know team, in a search for answers, had to find Justfly's parent company in Canada to get anywhere.

They sent a statement saying they are, "bounded by airline policies [and] strictly follow their rules." They also say, "airlines have changed their policies many times in recent weeks."

But here's the thing, Beke says when she contacted the airlines directly, they told her they weren't charging for any cancellations on the trips. They said Justfly held her money, and they couldn't do anything.

She even tried to use her travel insurance.

"Well, I've since learned that normal travel insurance is really for for death, or extreme illness but doesn't cover anything like this. So that's gone out the window," said Beke.

No good again, and Beke has a warning for all travelers.

"Third party sites, they're just, they're just not staffed or equipped for this," said Beke.