How to Make the Most Out of Getting Bumped: Passenger Made $11,000 After Giving Up Seats
It may seem like a lot of money, but you can get the same if you know how to negotiate.
The shocking video of a United passenger being dragged out of the plane is raising new interest in the airline industry's practice of overbooking flights.
One woman was similarly bumped from her Delta Airlines flight over the weekend, but wound up making a chunk of change out of the overbooking.
“We ended up getting bumped twice and finally cancelling our flight," Forbes magazine travel editor Laura Begley Bloom told Inside Edition. "Delta compensated us with $11,000 and refunded our tickets."
Bloom, her husband and daughter volunteered to give up their seats. But she used her savvy travel skills to negotiate a jaw-dropping deal.
You can negotiate a deal too if you're willing to be flexible about when you fly.
Bloom was booked on a flight from New York City to Fort Lauderdale, Fla., with her family, but when they arrived at LaGuardia Airport, they discovered total chaos.
Thousands of Delta flights across the country had been canceled because of storms and computer glitches. The flight was way overbooked and 60 passengers were on standby and desperate to get on the same flight as her family.
Delta asked for volunteers to give up their seats.
"Your rights as a passenger are if an airline has an overbooking situation they must compensate you if they can't get you on another flight within a small period of time," she said.
The family actually agreed to be bumped from three different flights over the weekend and each time they were given compensation. Their total profit was nearly $11,000.
“I say hold out for as much money as you can,” Bloom said.
Here are some tips she recommends if you find yourself on an overbooked flight.
Rule No. 1: Ask.
She said to inquire whether the airline is looking for volunteers. "You might also want to tell the gate attendant that you want to hold out for a higher price," Bloom said.
Rule No. 2: Be Nice.
"We witnessed people screaming at the crew, screaming at the staff, and it really didn't get anyone anywhere," she said. "What really got people somewhere was when they were nice."
Rule No. 3: Consider the Form of Compensation
“It's much better to get cash or gift cards than it is to get travel vouchers," she advised.
Rule No. 4: Don't Check Any Luggage.
That's the one mistake Bloom made and she is currently still waiting to get her bags back.
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