Potential dispute with Iberia/British Airways... [Resolved]

najaB

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Not a dispute yet (currently dealing with their social media team) but thought I'd get a sanity check...

I booked a flight with BA through Iberia.com (this is a useful trick as sometimes the fare can be better when you cross-book between IAG companies).
  • Booking on BA's site the Economy Basic fare (hand baggage only) was £464, the Economy fare (including one checked bag) was £544.
  • Booking on Iberia's site the Basic+ fare (one checked bag) was £476
All during the booking process the fare was shown as including a checked bag. I paid the £10 option to hold the fare and the confirmation email said a checked bag was included. When I logged back on to Iberia's site to complete the process it said that a checked bag was included, the final booking confirmation email said that a checked bag was included. And I'm sure you can guess where this is going...

Logged in to the Manage Your Booking page and yup, it says hand baggage only!

I've contacted both Iberia and BA on Twitter attaching screenshots of the confirmation email and Iberia gave a very non-committal answer "in principle you have the allowance stated in the image sent." BA are yet to reply.

With that said, am I correct that, because I entered into the contract on the basis that the website and first confirmation email both said that hold baggage was included, that there's no way they could get away with charging me £85 to check my bag at the airport? In addition, since the fare that Iberia offered was different to (and higher than) that that offered by BA, there's no way they can argue that they were actually offering me BA's Economy Basic fare?
 
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Bletchleyite

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I'm fairly sure when you buy a codeshare flight like that it usually says "baggage entitlements are as per the operating airline" somewhere in the small print. The £12 difference could easily have come up because of converting to Euros and back.
 

najaB

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I'm fairly sure when you buy a codeshare flight like that it usually says "baggage entitlements are as per the operating airline" somewhere in the small print. The £12 difference could easily have come up because of converting to Euros and back.
Yes, that's true but it's not a codeshare - it's BA flight numbers, not Iberia (see booking process and confirmation email screenshots attached).

1603730828576.png 1603730678672.png

Edit: Oh, I forgot to mention, when booking on Iberia there isn't a hand luggage only option available, this was the lowest fare option presented (screenshot attached).
1603746171845.png
 
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FQTV

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A few first thoughts:

1. I assume that you used the Iberia booking reference (PNR) to log in to your booking on ba.com. Did you also make a note of the BA booking reference?
2. If you did or you can, pop over to rj.com (Royal Jordanian's website) or finnair.com, and check what comes up when you look at the BA booking reference.
3. If either shows a checked baggage allowance, then that's the information that's held in the underlying Global Distribution System and you'll definitely be fine.
4. If neither does show a checked allowance, then you may find that there's an issue at check in, but your confirmation would be what you'd need to show. It can easily be overridden at the desk to add a bag id BA can't see the entitlement. If you get a push back, ask to see a duty manager.
5. If all else fails, pay by card and then complain to Customer Services for a refund. If they don't, dispute it with your card issuer.
 

najaB

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A few first thoughts:

1. I assume that you used the Iberia booking reference (PNR) to log in to your booking on ba.com. Did you also make a note of the BA booking reference?
2. If you did or you can, pop over to rj.com (Royal Jordanian's website) or finnair.com, and check what comes up when you look at the BA booking reference.
3. If either shows a checked baggage allowance, then that's the information that's held in the underlying Global Distribution System and you'll definitely be fine.
4. If neither does show a checked allowance, then you may find that there's an issue at check in, but your confirmation would be what you'd need to show. It can easily be overridden at the desk to add a bag id BA can't see the entitlement. If you get a push back, ask to see a duty manager.
5. If all else fails, pay by card and then complain to Customer Services for a refund. If they don't, dispute it with your card issuer.
Thanks for that, I haven't received the e-ticket confirmation yet so don't have the BA booking reference but I'll try it as soon as I do.

Iberia's Twitter team has responded and asked for what was shown on screen during the booking process, so that should hopefully be enough to sort it. BA's Twitter team hasn't responded after 15 hours!

Edit: Okay, this is now getting confusing. Logged into Iberia.com, here it says I don't have baggage:

1603734229578.png

But click into "Your flights":

1603734294877.png
 
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FQTV

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Thanks for that, I haven't received the e-ticket confirmation yet so don't have the BA booking reference but I'll try it as soon as I do.

Iberia's Twitter team has responded and asked for what was shown on screen during the booking process, so that should hopefully be enough to sort it. BA's Twitter team hasn't responded after 15 hours!

Edit: Okay, this is now getting confusing. Logged into Iberia.com, here it says I don't have baggage:

View attachment 85123

But click into "Your flights":

View attachment 85124

Sorry, to clarify, have you tried the Iberia booking reference (six alphanumeric characters) on ba.com yet?

If not, try it and see if it works on the ba.com Manage my Booking page.

If it does, check to see what bagagge allowance shows there.

If it works and there's an additional/different BA booking reference shown at the top, make a note of that and also look it up at rj.com or finnair.com.

If there's no additional or different BA booking reference, try the Iberia reference at rj.com or finnair.com.

Also, try to do all this on a desktop. Apps and mobile sites are notorious for not pulling data correctly.
 

najaB

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Thanks for the help.

Sorry, to clarify, have you tried the Iberia booking reference (six alphanumeric characters) on ba.com yet?
Yes, I have.
If not, try it and see if it works on the ba.com Manage my Booking page.

If it does, check to see what bagagge allowance shows there.
It does work, and says that I only have cabin baggage.
1603735615334.png
If it works and there's an additional/different BA booking reference shown at the top, make a note of that and also look it up at rj.com or finnair.com.

If there's no additional or different BA booking reference, try the Iberia reference at rj.com or finnair.com.
There is no additional booking reference shown. Using the IB booking reference at rj.com, it also says no baggage:
1603735381677.png
Also, try to do all this on a desktop. Apps and mobile sites are notorious for not pulling data correctly.
I've tried on both mobile and desktop and get the same results.
 

FQTV

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Hmm. This is not looking great, I’m afraid.

One last thing: have you had the eTicket through yet? It’ll have a ticket number starting ‘075-‘.

If you have, what does this say with regard to checked luggage? Ideally we’re looking for something like ‘1PC’ or ‘23K’.
 

najaB

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One last thing: have you had the eTicket through yet? It’ll have a ticket number starting ‘075-‘.
I have the eTicket number (it shows up now under booking management) but not the ticket email itself.
Hmm. This is not looking great, I’m afraid.
If they try to insist that I pay then I may have to play the Consumer Rights Act card - I repeated the booking process and took a screenshot, and I've two booking confirmation emails all of which say a checked bag is included.

Edit: Finnair.com allows you to request the eTicket and it says 0PC. :(
 
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FQTV

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I have the eTicket number (it shows up now under booking management) but not the ticket email itself.
If they try to insist that I pay then I may have to play the Consumer Rights Act card - I repeated the booking process and took a screenshot, and I've two booking confirmation emails all of which say a checked bag is included.

The issue here is that the contract is with Iberia, and you’re only a few days away from departure.

The slight danger is that, if you get Iberia to act before departure, they could cancel and refund your ticket as a remedy.

The risk then being that it would cost more to rebook a new ticket with a definite allowance.

With regard to the eTicket, however, you should be able to view this at qatarairways.com and possibly also at ba.com.

Look for a Print eTicket link (top right in Qatar Airways Manage Booking) or Print/email eTicket link (under Administration at the bottom of the BA Manage My Booking page).

The definitive allowances per the actual ticket issued will show when you open the documents they’ll open.

If this doesn’t show an allowance then you definitively don’t have one, and the responsibility is solely with Iberia. In practice, however, your only option may be to pay when you check in, and then start the claim process with Iberia Customer Services based on their mis-selling.

Edit: just seen your Edit! That's definitive then, I'm afraid. When you go to online check in, unless there's something really gremliny, you're almost certainly going to have to pay for a bag. Then it's CR and potentially card issuer :(.
 

najaB

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The slight danger is that, if you get Iberia to act before departure, they could cancel and refund your ticket as a remedy.
As it stands at the moment, I've provided their Twitter team with screenshots of the booking process, and the confirmation emails and they are "Checking with colleagues" and will get back to me. I'll let you know what they say.

Edit: BA have, after a mere 20 hours, replied "As you booked through Iberia, you will need to discuss this with them."

An update, as promised.

I prodded Iberia for an update on Thursday evening and they stuck to the "Well, it shouldn't be a problem" line.

So I turned up at the airport bright and early Friday morning and explained what had happened to the lady on check in and she fiddled around with the system and got my bags checked in all the way to Bridgetown, though she could only check me in as far as Heathrow.

I think I was helped by the fact that her previous passenger was an absolute d**k, so I think my pleasant smile and warm good morning went extra far.

Checked in again at Heathrow and got to see how light the loading was for a 772: IIRC there were five in F, a similar number in J, and Y and Y+ were 92 in total.

Which probably turned out to be a good thing because the runway in Barbados was taken out of service while we were in the air, so I'm writing this post from a five star hotel in Antigua on BA's bill.
 
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eoff

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With that said, am I correct that, because I entered into the contract on the basis that the website and first confirmation email both said that hold baggage was included, that there's no way they could get away with charging me £85 to check my bag at the airport? In addition, since the fare that Iberia offered was different to (and higher than) that that offered by BA, there's no way they can argue that they were actually offering me BA's Economy Basic fare?
This is nothing to do with BA.

You paid Iberia for a product, it has to be delivered as described. If it was me I would take the booking confirmation with you and kick up a fuss if they try to charge. I see that it did indeed work out.
 

najaB

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This is nothing to do with BA.
Other than it been a BA flight and BA check-in staff.
I would take the booking confirmation with you and kick up a fuss if they try to charge you.
I did take the booking confirmation, but I personally find that being nice works better than kicking up a fuss. As it turned out I didn't have to pay anything extra.
 

eoff

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Other than it been a BA flight and BA check-in staff.
Sorry, what I meant was that the dispute was with Iberia. It would be like any travel agent selling you something and you then discover you didn't have what you expected when you got to the airport. The airline might just let you have what you expected, or contact the travel agent directly asking them to sort out the booking or expect you to.
Glad it worked out.
 

Bald Rick

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Which probably turned out to be a good thing because the runway in Barbados was taken out of service while we were in the air, so I'm writing this post from a five star hotel in Antigua on BA's bill.

Glad it worked out. Being a nice customer always helps!

And if you are going to be stranded on a journey, I can think of worse places than a 5* hotel in Antigua.
 

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