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Passengers protest an American Airlines 15 hour delay in Miami chanting a demand for hotel rooms in Spanish.
Some frustrated passengers said the delay forced them to spend the night sleeping on the floor of the airport.
…[American Airlines] said all passengers were offered hotel accommodations and vouchers for meals, which she said is company policy when planes have mechanical problems.
But a video from Miami International Airport shows a large number of passengers crowded in the terminal chanting “we want a bed” in Spanish.
The plane to Santiago experienced mechanical issues and turned back to Miami. A passenger reports that they were back on the ground for two hours before American told “everyone to sleep in the lobby.” That’s likely an exaggeration as another passenger noted “some got hotels at about 4:30 a.m.”
The lesson here is simple — and it isn’t specific to American Airlines, the same situations arise with any airline — book your flights with a premium credit card that comes with trip delay coverage. Get your own room and send the bill to your credit card company.
- Don’t rely on the airline, if they give you a room it will probably take a long time that you could have been sleeping, and will be at a hotel you probably don’t want to stay at.
- Airline claims about ‘no rooms’ are almost always bogus, there may be no rooms in the airline’s system, but that’s just another reason to book something yourself (even if it’s a little farther afield), much better than sleeping in the terminal.
The best card for airfare that includes strong trip delay coverage is the Chase Sapphire Reserve, earning 3 points per dollar on airfare (on all travel and dining actually) and offers this coverage.
Of course some prefer 5 points per dollar from the Platinum Card from American Express but that doesn’t have trip delay, here’s how to decide between them.