WASHINGTON (CIRCA) – A Washington, D.C. woman says she received a $10,000 travel voucher from United Airlines after she was urged to give up her seat on an overbooked flight.
Allison Preiss adds United offered her the voucher following complications with her seat on a recent flight from D.C. to Austin.
“I never asked for a larger amount – the agent just escalated quickly,” she told The Washington Post Friday.
United confirmed in a Friday email to The Post that “yes, we issued” Preiss “this voucher per our policy.”
Preiss said her initial Thursday flight from D.C.’s Reagan National Airport to Austin was cancelled over a winter snowstorm.
The D.C. resident then re-booked herself on a flight out of nearby Dulles, claiming the last open seat on a United flight that was ultimately overbooked.
“If nobody bites, they will kick off the lowest fare passenger by pulling them out of the boarding line,” Preiss tweeted Thursday of the overbooking. “For a flight THEY oversold. Unreal.”
“I AM THE LOWEST FARE PASSENGER,” she added, before a United employee approached her about vacating her seat.
Preiss said she was initially offered a $2,000 voucher and the next available seat on another flight.
The potential passenger asked, however, why she was asked to “sign a document stating that I volunteered my seat” when she was “involuntarily bumped.”
Preiss was then given a pamphlet saying airline regulations and federal law entitled her to $650, or four times what she paid for her ticket.
The United agent next offered a voucher worth $3,000 or $4,000, Preiss continued, when she noted she wanted cash for her weekend in Austin.
Preiss added that the airline employee eventually told her she could be offered up to a $10,000 voucher for her troubles.
The situation additionally featured two $10 meal vouchers for Preiss’s woes, in addition to the travel variety.
“No firm plans yet, but I’m thinking about Hawaii,” Preiss said of her travel voucher plans alongside a smiling emoticon.
United has recently suffered negative headlines for several incidents involving the airline’s treatment of animals.
A French bulldog died earlier this month when it was stowed in an overhead bin aboard a United plane, and another animal was sent from Oregon to Japan rather than Kansas City.