NBC 5 Responds: Third-Party Travel Vendor Months Behind in Processing Refunds Due to Pandemic

NBCUniversal, Inc.

If your flight has been canceled by an airline, The U.S. Department of Transportation says you’re entitled to a refund, but what about tickets purchased through third-party travel sites?

NBC 5 responds heard from several North Texans who have spent months waiting to get their money back after their flights were canceled by the airline.

Cheyrl and Michael Ensley, Desoto-based educators, were looking forward to their March 2020 vacation.

 “We were planning to fly to Italy and spend a few days there and then do a Mediterranean cruise,” said Cheyrl. “There were a group of us going on this trip, family members and friends.”

"It really was something I was looking forward to,” said Michael.

But the pandemic canceled their trip.

“The funny thing is that the cruise line had no problem and refunded the money immediately. It's the airline with ASAP Tickets that we're having an issue with,” said Cheyrl.

The Ensley's were flying with Delta Air Lines but paid more than $3700 for tickets through the third-party travel site, ASAP Tickets.

After the airline canceled their flights, Cheryl spent months trying to get her money back from ASAP.

“I did speak with Delta Air Lines again also, and they checked their records and they said that they have to refund the money to ASAP and that they did that on July 14,” said Cheyrl.

But September came and the Ensley's still had not received their refund.

“I’ve never connected TV station before, but of course I’ve seen some of your stories. So I said they may be able to help,” said Cheyrl.

And the Ensley’s aren’t alone.

It was canceled twice,” said Mohammad Soheili.

Last October, Soheili purchased a plane ticket to visit family in Tehran. 

He spent $915. The airline canceled his flight and said ASAP offered a voucher instead of a refund.

“They said, you know, we cannot help you with anything except maybe give you a voucher,” said Soheili.

Earlier this year, the Department of Transportation issued a notice to airlines regarding refunds because of COVID-19. It clarified that if the airline cancels the flight a full refund must be given.

But since the Ensley's and Soheili didn’t purchase their tickets directly from the airline,  their refunds have been delayed.

NBC 5 Responds tried contacting ASAP tickets but couldn’t reach anyone.

We had better luck with their parent company, International Travel Network.

In an email, a spokesperson told NBC 5 Responds it’s experiencing a backlog of refund requests saying, “Due to the COVID pandemic, many of our offices were forced to shut down; and thus, significantly reducing our workforce.  we kindly ask for our customer's understanding and to be patient during this difficult time.”

Within days of contacting NBC 5, both the Ensley's and Soheilei said ASAP tickets gave them their full refunds back and apologized for the long wait.

NBC 5 Responds is committed to researching your concerns and recovering your money. Our goal is to get you answers and, if possible, solutions and resolution. Call us at 844-5RESPND (844-573-7763) or fill out our Customer Complaint form.

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