United Airline denied free checked-in bag for cadet

Discussion in 'Air Force Academy - USAFA' started by lga, Dec 30, 2013.

  1. lga

    lga Member

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    For years my DS enjoyed a free checked-in bag with various airlines.
    However United Airline denied it at a recent flight. They said cadets are not 'active duty'.

    My search on the web got different answers.

    Are cadets 'defined' (by law) as active duty? If so, any reference?

    Or are they just 'considered' active duty and most airlines are just doing us a favor?
     
  2. ca2midwestmom

    ca2midwestmom Member

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    I found this online: 38 USC 1965(1)(d) states, "The term 'active duty' means full-time duty as a cadet or midshipman at the United States Military Academy, United States Naval Academy, United States Air Force Academy, or the United States Coast Guard Academy."

    http://www.west-point.org/parent/wp...option=com_content&task=view&id=168&Itemid=62

    I don't know what statute this is from -- anyone else?

    Sounds like the United worker didn't know the policy if your DS has been able to get bags checked for free in the past.
     
  3. ca2midwestmom

    ca2midwestmom Member

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  4. lga

    lga Member

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    Thanks for the replies

    Be ware of certain airlines. They may apply their own interpretation.
     
  5. Stealth_81

    Stealth_81 Super Moderator Moderator Founding Member

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    The cadets are active duty. However, if you read the policies of some airlines it says that they will only waive baggage fees for active duty military travelling on orders. Personal travel is not covered by their regulation. Sometimes they get the fee waived and sometimes they don't. Our son has probably had the fee waived 90% of the time simply by checking in using a military ID rather than his drivers license. He is grateful when the fee is waived, and pays the fee when it isn't. Yesterday when he flew back to Phoenix on United he paid the fee.

    Stealth_81
     
  6. USMCGrunt

    USMCGrunt Member

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    United's policy: http://www.united.com/cms/en-us/travel/pages/checkedbaggage.aspx

    It was an error caused by the confusion of the agent in regards to a cadet's status (active vs inactive). A training or experience issue.

    I suspect you could write customer service and get a rebate. In the future, checking in with a military ID may help or you could ask to speak to a supervisor.
     
  7. Christcorp

    Christcorp Member

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    Also. It may have just been that worker or airport. Reason I say this is because when my son was a cadet, less than 2 years ago, he flew United many times and always had free baggage. But its also possible that united has changed their policy in the last year.
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2013
  8. coastiefam

    coastiefam Member

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    United's policy is active duty plus dependents on official or personal travel. (We flew last week.)
    We always show military id.
    They just were uninformed/ not trained well.
    Also active duty and any dependents under 15 qualify for the express security line. So husband and two kids sped through while the oldest (17) and I took off shoes, jackets etc.

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  9. haleym

    haleym Member

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    I had this problem a couple of days ago in a DC airport. Weirdly enough, I had TSA tell me at pre check that I am not active duty. I told them that's funny considering that that's what I write down on all of the forms I fill out for the Air Force.... Haha. Funny the things they'll do for you when you're in uniform- never seem to have a problem then! Maybe it just depends on the place and the people.
     
  10. America's Finest

    America's Finest USMA Cadet

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    It was definitely that individual worker. I carry a copy of the regulation and ask for a supervisor if you still get any trouble.

    Similar story: I had a cashier at a PX initially refuse to sell to me in clothing sales because my CAC was not good enough. I found it funny at the time because I wasn't being allowed to purchase an item I needed in order to commission. Talk about a catch 22.

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  11. the tone

    the tone Member

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    When checking in 24 hours prior to departure on United, it asks if you're checking bags, specifically asks if military and also if on orders or personal travel. Either way, it does not charge and my son has never been charged on United. He does not volunteer any info and simply shows his USAF military ID. This was out of COS and Houston Intercontinental. For the record, I hate United.
     
  12. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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  13. bmw17

    bmw17 NWP 2012

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    I usually fly US Airways but flying home for leave this time for some reason I had to fly United out of COS. It was a charlie foxtrot. All connecting flights from COS to DEN were delayed and it was a madhouse for everyone trying to make their connections to get home... Good thing I'm flying US Airways to get back to USAFA in a couple days!!
     
  14. the tone

    the tone Member

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    @ LineInTheSand ...Great video, now on my FB timeline!
     
  15. Rage_14

    Rage_14 Member

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    As a cadet, I have never asked for a military discount. If it is offered, I'll accept, but I don't think as cadets we should really have that sense of entitlement. What real danger are you putting yourself in as a cadet? Better look out for those paper cuts from textbooks!
     
  16. rvicek

    rvicek USAFA Cadet Fourth Class

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    Lol! Thanks for posting this, Rage. I think it is important to remember the reason behind military discounts. You have my respect, for what it's worth at least.

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
     
  17. navy83

    navy83 Member

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    Well said!

    That being said I believe most cadets travel with military orders over break. It is up to the CADET to have these with them and their military ID. Then it is up to the discretion of the airline if they want to allow academy cadets this privilege that they extend to the military.

    If my DS doesn't follow the rules its his problem and his expense, or he can carry his bag onto the plane if he doesn't want to pay the fee.
     
  18. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but there is not a law requiring these private companies to provide this service free of charge, correct?
     
  19. navy83

    navy83 Member

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    Correct.
     
  20. NavyHoops

    NavyHoops Moderator

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    There is no law. Every airline has its own policy. Some wave bags for military personnel (and sometimes family members) on leave and others only on orders. It varies on the rules, number of bags, weight of the bags, etc. It also varies based upon the agent working at the time, some are more lenient than others.
     

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