Canceled by Midwest, But All is Not Lost

After I wrote my post “Booking A Flight In a Time of Uncertainty,” I knew it was bound to bite me. Sure enough, it happened yesterday when Midwest canceled one of my flights this summer. Though that’s a big deal to me, you guys probably don’t care. But there were a couple of things that I found during this process that I thought might be worth writing about.

It started just after lunch when I simultaneously received an email and a recorded phone call saying that there had been a schedule change and I needed to call Midwest to be reaccommodated. Uh oh. Since they said I had to call to be rebooked, I knew what that meant. My flight was toast.

I called the airline and had to wait for a full 10 minutes before someone answered to rebook me. Unfortunately, our redeye from LAX to Milwaukee has disappeared, so they offered to rebook us on a morning flight with a) a four hour connection in Milwaukee or b) an overnight in Milwaukee. Um, no.

So, I quickly went online while I sat there weighing my options and noticed that there were alternatives that were actually cheaper than what we originally paid. I told Midwest I wanted a refund and they obliged. Then I rebooked on Northwest (I know, I said not to do that in my post, but it was convenient). Now, we’ll get to our destination a little earlier and we’ll save $160 between the two of us. That brings me to my two points.

  1. Since I had to wait for 10 minutes on the phone with Midwest, something tells me that our flight wasn’t the only one that was canceled. Anyone have any details on what else might have quietly been cut out?

  2. Why the heck have fares gone DOWN for a flight this summer?!? That is definitely not a good sign for demand trends. I mean, I’ll gladly take it, but I certainly would have expected to pay more. Airlines cannot afford to be lowering fares right now.

Hopefully these flights won’t be canceled on me, but in this environment, who knows. At least I’m not flying Silverjet.


12 Responses to Canceled by Midwest, But All is Not Lost

  1. Becky says:

    I was looking at prices for a flight from Detroit to Orlando. Yesterday, the price was $119 NWA Non-stop, which is really cheap. I had the same thought as you, why did the price drop so much. Well, today, the price is $183, so glad I purchased it last night!

  2. Jeff K says:

    I also noticed that fares dropped?? My Labor Day plans from SFO to the Midwest are pretty cheap (ironically with Midwest being the cheapest).

    Too bad they canceled on you as I’ve always liked Midwest even thou I’m biased as a Michigander by birth (those 1900D rides over Lake Michigan were yaw-filled fun while they lasted). And staying overnight in Milwaukee is not too bad as the city is really fun in the summer.

  3. Steve says:

    I just booked two flights on YX. Heres the deal:
    MKE-SAN-MKE: fare 473.49 RT FUEL SURCHARGE 74.41
    MKE-DAY-MKE: fare 445.58 RT FUEL SURCHARGE 120.92

    GEESH! I guess that says it all. I haven’t heard about massive cancellations but I DO know that Air Tran is now competing DIRECTLY with YX from MKE to West Coast cities.

    What is weird is that the fuel is more expensive on a CRJ to Dayton than it is on a 717 to San Diego.

  4. Carson says:

    Which LAX –> MKE flight has been canceled? I take the Thursday night redeye approximately every other week and it’s almost always full.

  5. CF says:

    Carson – It was the redeye. I believe it’s only been operating 4x a week, but now it’s gone for good.

  6. Steve says:

    Thats not all folks!! The red eye from Las Vegas to Milwaukee appears to be operated on a selected daily basis, not every day as it was. I wonder if Midwest is looking to get out of the red eye business??

  7. Carson says:

    That would be interesting if they got out of the redeye, I believe they are the only direct LAX –> MKE redeye, and like I said it’s almost always full. Maybe someone else (Airtran?) will pick it up if Midwest does drop the route?

  8. Steve says:

    Looks like Air Tran picked up the route, maybe on a daily basis.

  9. Greg says:

    Just got back from overseas and one of the voice msgs was from YX explaining a schedule change on one of our SAN-MSN flights. It was minor and has little impact on our trip, though.
    Booked these tickets on YX in April even though NWA was much cheaper. Fortunately for you they continue to be cheap – just no chocolate chip cookies this time!

  10. DRG says:

    Having to wait 10 minutes on the phone to reach an agent at a call center is not indicative of a particular problem — it’s normal these days. I’ve waited a half an hour to get through to people on call centers.

  11. Kevin says:

    Pittsburgh-Kansas City (Midwest Connect) appears to be cut after service on July 19.

  12. Steve says:

    Yes, I know what is going on Brett… the schedules are once again unstable. The instability of the timetable has been driving us all crazy, more crazy than even the different aircraft type swaps.

    1. The new E-190s have been having MAJOR maintenance problems. There were two consecutive flights canceled from LAX to MKE. I expect Republic is reassessing these aircraft and wanting the bugs out before they actually put them online. (maybe the same aircraft was going to turn, but who knows).

    2. Skywest is leaving (not soon enough for me), and as they dump the CRJs they will shift E170s and E135s to their place… thus schedule shifts yet again.

    3. There is a fall out effect. They are adding back in services to Florida, including Ft. Lauderdale. I flew yesterday from DFW to MKE on an absolutely sold out E170 and spoke with two deadhead pilots from MIdwest (the legacy company). They told me their job was toast in one week.. so there go the 717s.

    4. Don’t feel bad, I have award tickets around Christmas. I know for SURE that Skywest wont be there to fly me on these flights, so I imagine the schedule change will happen, but they can’t predict 3 months in advance. Its driving us all crazy. If they cancel, its going to be tough to rebook during this season.

    5. I haven’t flown much on YX lately because of this chaos except for last minute stuff. I am very disappointed though about the E190s. They look so comfortable. Flying the 170 yesterday reminded me, even completely sold out, how comfortable this plane really was.

    Steve

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