JAL Nightmare

9 replies


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 27 Jul 2016

Total posts 32

I'm holding a JAL premium economy booking made on their website for SYD-DFW-SYD (via Narita both ways) and needed to change it to SYD-LHR-SYD for later in the year, at dates to be decided. Despite repeated attempts to log-in to the JAL website with my reservation details (it kept saying the booking reference was wrong) I then spent about an hour on hold over two attempts to finally get through to reservations. My plan was to get a voucher and use the credit later, as I've done with Qantas, but I was told JAL doesn't do that and I'd have to cancel the booking and pay the $300 fee. Then, to add insult to injury, I was told it will take two to three months for the refund to be processed. So, that will be my first and last JAL experience. Let it serve as a warning to others to avoid this disappointing airline…


Member since 16 Jan 2018

Total posts 4

Maybe next time you should make sure you have a flexible booking if you want to change dates or have the ability to cancel and reroute a booking. These options are available, so not really the airlines fault if you don’t purchase these extras, but then expect the service as if you did. Sure it’s disappointing and will cost you time and money, but ultimately you get what you pay for. If you don’t pay for flexibility, don’t expect it.

Last editedby Timthemonkey at Jan 16, 2018, 07:07 PM.


Member since 31 Mar 2014

Total posts 244


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 09 May 2011

Total posts 180

Were you not aware of the rules of the ticket when you purchased it? Can't blame the airline for enforcing the rules of your ticket when it doesn't suit you...


Member since 07 Oct 2012

Total posts 768

The only things I see as issues here are the delay in providing a refund and time on phone.

Having an expectation that every airline operates the same manner (in this case, like Qantas), is not realistic. Noting that Qantas charges a $225 change fee - plus fare difference - for PY flights to USA anyway.

Last editedby hutch at Jan 16, 2018, 06:32 PM.


Member since 12 Dec 2012

Total posts 295

When did you make the booking? JL changed their GDS in mid November which meant that all booking references were changed to work with the new system. If you made the original booking before the change, you would have been trying to use a booking reference from the old system and should have had a new one sent to you at some point.

As for the change, expect JL to follow the fare rules.
During a trip to Japan last year, some plans changed and I could no longer make it out to NRT in time for my booked NRT-SYD, however I could get to HND in time for a similar overnight flight to SYD (eg, the QF HND-SYD). I asked JL if I could change from JL771 to QF26. Nope. Fare rules said JL only. So I ended up with an extra day in Tokyo and a ~$100 change fee.

Michael Kao

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 06 Nov 2014

Total posts 161

I booked a e-deal fare with QF for $125 BNE to SYD. Some changes in my plan and I need to change the flight to one day later. I have to pay $99 to change plus any fare difference. Does that mean I should avoid Qantas?


Member since 17 Jan 2018

Total posts 13

A note also that this is a 'Japan' problem not a JAL problem - refunds to credit cards routinely take 2 months to process. Speaking from various experiences with hotels, Disneyland etc. However, like all things Japanese it *does* work!


Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

Member since 17 Aug 2017

Total posts 28

Unfortunately all the airlines do it. One airline will prove very popular if they changed these high change of flight fees.

But shop around if unhappy plenty of airlines to choose from.
I had disappointing experience with Qantas now Singapore Airines get thousands of dollars from me each year.



Member since 09 Mar 2016

Total posts 9

I’ve been going back and forth between US-Japan; Aus-Japan for 30 years. The rules are the rules. Though I do find ANA actually processes refunds in a lot less than 8-12 weeks. The booking retrieval functions of both JL and NH can be counterintuitive unless you’ve lived a lot in Japan. No nightmare here.

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