Help! My Very Direct Flight Added a Stop and So Many More Passengers

Dear Tripped Up,

I recently bought Allegiant Air tickets from Cleveland to Orlando, Fla., and was told while booking that if the flight was more than 65 percent full, I could request not to board in exchange for a voucher. In Cleveland, as boarding started, we were advised by the gate agent that this would be a “split flight” — no explanation what that meant. The next words were: “Take any open seat.”

The extra-legroom seats we paid for were quickly claimed, and the plane filled well past 65 percent. After the cabin door closed, we were told that we would be stopping in Flint, Mich. In Flint, the plane emptied and filled again. We did not see the cabin cleaned — not even during the 30-minute ground delay. We finally landed in Orlando more than two hours after our scheduled arrival, complete with baggage that had been damaged during an inspection.

I’ve been an airline customer for more than 50 years and I’ve never boarded a plane when I didn’t know where I was going. The airline’s method of communication was appalling and deceitful — to not inform passengers that their nonstop flight was now a one-stop flight was the height of disrespect.

What is a “split flight” and am I eligible for a refund? David

Dear David,

That’s a lot of travel mishaps for what should have been a quick, no-fuss, sub-three-hour flight — even during a pandemic. To see if I can help resolve the issues, let’s break them down:

What is a split flight?

A split flight happens when two lower-load flights — as

Keep reading this article on The New York Times Your Money.

Leave a Reply