perfect family

Air Canada Refuses To Transfer Voucher To Wife Who Kept Her Own Last Name

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148678119A Calgary author was baffled this week, when he was unable to transfer a flight voucher to his wife because she didn’t have the same last name. What year is it again?

Chris Turner attempted to transfer a flight voucher that he earned by volunteering to be bumped off a flight. It is Air Canada’s policy that these vouchers can be transferred to family members – there’s just one catch; to protect against “fraud,” family members must have the same last name.  The Twitter interaction started like this:

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Air Canada responded:

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Turner, who is now my personal hero, countered with:

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Turner has upwards of 5,000 followers – many who chimed in to let Air Canada know that their policy was unfair and archaic. It’s become pretty commonplace to air grievances on social media – and that can sometimes get pretty tiresome. But I support Turner in his public objection. He explained, “If @aircanada‘s service rep hadn’t been so wearily familiar with the glitch I was encountering, I probably wouldn’t have made it public.”

Air Canada defended their policy on Twitter, in a two part tweet: “Just to be clear: as a rule, vouchers are transferable to ANYBODY.(1) Hwvr,transfers bfr trvl made over the phone can only be to relatives w/same last name,in order to avoid fraud. (2)”

I understand why Turner got bent out of shape about this. Turner volunteered to be bumped off a flight and earned this voucher – and going to the airport to take care of the transfer is a total inconvenience. I think it’s safe to say there are plenty of family members who do not share surnames, for a variety of reasons. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to protest a company that is keeping to a definition of “family” that is pretty out-dated. Many, many partners don’t share last names. If this is your predominant method of “fraud prevention” in the phone transfer of these vouchers – looks like you need to find a new one.

(photo: Getty Images)