After The Sale
Once the sale is complete, your job is basically done… But what happens when your client needs to make changes or cancellations? What if there are unforeseen emergencies or the airline changes flight details, or even worse: they cancel the flight? (gasp!)
The need to service clients after the booking is par for the course and extremely common. It’s actually a very big part of the white glove service you want to provide your luxury air clients.
The good news is that the vendors and airlines are on top of it and they will take care of almost every type of scenario. All you need to know are some basics, and how to communicate between your clients and the supplier.
Now let’s discuss the most common scenarios for after the sale support:
Your supplier will have customer support for all sorts of inquiries and issues. Some suppliers offer phone support during business hours while others even have a 24-hour emergency line.
You in turn, want to ensure that you also have a clear customer support channel, and your clients know how to reach you with their concerns.
Twenty Four Hour Cancellation Window
This is a great tidbit that you need to know which is used extensively throughout the industry:
According to U.S. Department of Transportation regulations, any non-refundable flight that is booked at least seven days before departure is allowed to be changed or cancelled within 24 hours of booking.
Therefore, if a fare is booked and then your client changes their mind or you find a better fare elsewhere, you can cancel the flight without any penalty.
Voluntary change/cancellation policy
Sometimes, your client will need to change or cancel their flight. These are known as voluntary changes or voluntary cancellations.
As discussed earlier, these differ depending on the type of fare, booking class and airline. Most tickets are changeable/refundable with a fee. If your client needs to change or cancel their flight and you are unsure of the policies, reach out to your supplier.
Sometimes the airlines change the flight schedule, flight details, or even cancel flights.
These are called involuntary changes.
Most suppliers monitor your flights and itineraries and will send you updates if any schedule changes occur. If the flights are cancelled by the airline, the supplier can work with the airline to book new flights.
Usually, if the flight is cancelled or significantly changed, your client is entitled to a full refund – even on a non-refundable fare.
What happens when an emergency pops up and the passenger can’t make the flight?
If the flight is non refundable, or even if it is refundable and they have passed the window of cancellation, each airline will have its own policy for how they honor emergency cancellations or changes. The most commonly allowed emergency cancellation would be a true medical emergency with a doctor’s note.
Ask your supplier for assistance on how to handle each scenario.
To ensure travel security and avoid denial of boarding, you must verify an exact match between the passenger’s name on their ticket and their passport or travel documents. Name corrections are not guaranteed and are at the discretion of the airline. Due to the hassle involved, most suppliers require a separate service fee in addition to the airlines’ fees.
On the subject of passports: You must ensure that each passenger’s passport is never within 6 months of expiration. If their passport is set to expire within the next 6 months, they may be denied boarding!
Chapter 11 Takeaways…
- Customer service is very important, and you need to be involved
- Vendors and airlines do most of the work
- Your main focus is communicating with the client
- There is a 24 hour cancellation window if booked at least 7 days before departure
- Difference between voluntary changes, involuntary changes, and emergencies
- Name changes: they’re bad!
Congratulations! You have completed the training!
Your next step is to take the certification test and become verified as a Luxury Air Expert