Chicago Sun-Times
With Lori Rackl

Mexicana misery: tell us your story

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Mexicana Airlines' bankruptcy woes have caused a heap of headaches for travelers stuck with tickets on the airline, which stopped operating flights over the weekend.

I still have a couple of unused Mexicana vouchers, which will now double as scrap paper in my junk drawer. But my loss is minimal compared to folks out there who were literally left stranded by the airline.

If you're one of those unlucky ones, tell us your story. Has any other airline offered to honor your tickets? What did you do to get home? Or what will you do now?

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I tried to cancel my mexicana ticket but the sales people said not to worry, your flight is not effected and you will be flying. Well if I would have canceled American Express would have refuned my ticket. Instead American Express said I have to fight it out with Mexicana! For American Express I will give them this...I only use my American Express to buy airline tickets because I thought they would give me flight insurance against things like this...well right after I bought the mexicana tickets using my passport, my American Express and I dentity was stolen...that should tell you something...luckly American Express caught it and stopped it...But stole my money and tried to steal my identity??? I cant trust this airline ever again...just terrible...lying about my flight being ok when I demanded a refund...but they refused...strung me along until bankruptcy...and had the nerve to steal my refund no notta!

I purchased my ticket in April 2010. I was flying to CR for the first time in 18 years to see family and friends in Costa Rica that i had not seen since i was 14. I rec'd a call from Vayama who I used to book my trip 2 days before my scheduled flight to tell me that my flight had been canceled, no they could not help me get on another flight and yes I could get a refund and it would take approximately 60 days to get therefund back. I was so upset i boo hoo'd at my desk and the search for another ticket was on...i was crushed to find that a replacement ticket at the last minute was 3x what my original ticket had costs.

Fortunately, i had a vacation fund cushion to cover the costs and went with a lot less spending money than i had planned. My trip was in August of 2010, i still have not rec'd a refund and i dont believe that I will. Vayama has been no help, the customer service numbers on the Mexicana webpage do not work and i have filled out the refund form 2x and i have not heard or seen anything....

My question is did anyone actually recieve their money back and if so how long did it take and what did you have to do?

I just found out TODAY! not 1 email or phone call before today. Luckily I got a flight on AA (for almost double) and CHASE is ontop of the refund.

We had booked our flights for next spring break back in April through Mexicana on a flight which was operated by American Airlines. Our tickets specifically state they are operated by American Airlines, and the flight times match the American Airlines flight times for those dates. We figured it wasn't an issue when Mexicana went bankrupt, as we were flying Mexicana operated by American Airlines. We have done this before, and the check in process is at American Airlines, the plane is American, and there is no reference to Mexicana other than the original booking (which again, states Mexicana, operated by American Airlines). We have been told by American we are out of luck, and do not have seats on the flight, but they would be "happy to rebook us on the flight" now that the tickets are going for more than 3 times what we paid - $1,355 round trip x 4 for the family to go. I am more upset with American Airlines that they won't live up to their obligation for these seats which were sold on their flight.

I argued with the Mexicana Airlines and American Airlines staff for 65 minutes. I vented my frustration at the Mexicana staff and American Airline rep.

I purchased tickets to Cancu on March 3, 2010. My daughter was getting married in Cancun, Mexicao on September 4, 2010. The day before we were going leave for Mexico I found out the Mexicana airlines is not opertering. Wow I can't even imgage what was happening to my family. I had to purchase tickets the day before we lift paying over $1,000.00 per ticket. It is Now September 29, 2010. Since I purchased these tickets on my debit card, my bank is unable to help me.

On Sunday August 19th 2010, my family (2 kids and wife) were stranded in Mexico City trying to catch our Mexicana Flight back to Los Angeles. The Mexicana rep told us that American Airlines would honor the tickets and book us on a new flight. The attendant at Mexicana rudely told us that they would book a new Flight with American Airlines for Next Thursday September 2nd 2010.

The Mexicana Airlines Rep walked us over to the American Airlines Counter to book our new flight for Sunday night.

American Airlines apparently oversold all flights and said nothing was open until Thursday. The American Airlines rep offered us tickets to fly back home on Thursday. The rep mentioned that we are booked for the flight and that we should be at the airport 3 hours in advance to make sure we get our seats. So my family had four American Airlines phantom tickets booked to Dallas Texas then LAX for Thursday September 2nd.

The American Airlines flight was schedule to do layover at Dallas and then to LAX for our flight back home.

However, On Thursday September 2nd, we arrived at the Mexico City Airport and went straight the American Airlines booth to check in. The American Airlines rep told us that the Mexicana Airline and the American Airlines computer system did not have a record of our new flight bookings. The American Airlines rep in Mexico City was very rude. She told us that they did not have to honor any thing for us.

The American Airlines rep told us to go argue with Mexicana Airlines. My family and I were provided 4 American Airlines tickets that were useless. The American Airlines the rep told us that the tickets we held were not even stand-by. The American Airlines rep wanted to know how we ended up with these 4 phantom tickets. Supposedly, the tickets we held were not booked from Mexico City to Dallas. The tickets were only booked from Dallas to LAX.

I asked the rep how this situation can happen. How can you only book half of the flight?
The American Airlines rep said that it was most likely that her colleague made a mistake on the ticket confirmation.

Furthermore, the American Airlines reps said that our tickets were not valid!

So we asked the American Airline rep to help us fly back home. We informed the rep that we had a 3 year old and a 7 year old kid that needed to fly back home. The kids need to go back to start school immediately.

In addition, the American Airline reps said we can be on stand-by if we liked. However, the American Airlines flights were all overbooked and they could not guarantee anything for us.

Also, the American Airlines rep told us that some part of the family can fly back to the USA via Miami maybe over the weekend. While the other family members could fly back to the US some time next week to Dallas Texas – maybe.

The American Airlines rep told us that they would take care of their paying customers first. The left over seats could be shared among the Mexicana Airline refugees.

The American Airline Reps walked us to the Mexicana Airlines Section of the Airport and she told us that they had no flight for us this week. The American Airline rep told us that they were doing us a favor by honoring the flights and that we should take whatever they gave us in the future.

I argued with the Mexicana Airlines and American Airlines staff for 65 minutes. I vented my frustration at the Mexicana staff and American Airline rep.

Finally, I demanded a refund for my tickets. The American Airlines and Mexicana Airlines reps told us that we should have good luck with a refund in a very demeaning tone.

I told these people that I would file complaint with the Airport authorities. The American Airline reps snatched the Airline tickets from hand and said that that was their property.

While arguing with the American Airlines rep, a man that was trying to book a flight with told us that he has been hearing the same false hope from American Airlines for 2 weeks. The man said that his family has been stuck in Mexico City hearing the same bull crap from these reps.

I was so frustrated that I just ended up flying back home via Alaska Airlines. I ended up dishing out $1500 for 4 airline tickets back to Los Angeles. Alaska Airlines was very supportive and they even gave us a break on the extra luggage fees.

I know that the Mexicana Airlines is in a hopeless situation. I do not hope to get my money back any time soon. I just hope that some travel authority is out there watching and taking note of these rude airline reps abuse and disrespect the paying flying customers.

Finally, I know that I will never fly Mexicana Airlines again due to the fact that they do not exist anymore. I will also remove the American Airlines service from my list due to their unethical and misleading behavior.


Mexicana has ruined everything. They were so quick to take our money but now may not give it back. I am getting married in Cancun Oct 9. We have had these tickets booked since March. We just found out today Sept 12th. I have spent hours trying to find the best prices. I also went to their website and requested a refund. It's costing us more to fly to Cancun than what we paid originally. Thank f*cking god for credit cards. I cannot cancel my wedding. It's unfortunate that some people on here had to because of you MEXICANA!!! You have ruined many peoples lives.

we saved up for a family vacation for thanksgiving in cancun before the girls leave the nest. we are out 4 airline tickets now and the hotel. all was prepaid and non-refundable. we saved for this only to see it all disappear. anybody honoring mexicana tickets. new tickets now are 50% more.

Mexicana has always had the absolute worst, no make that THE ABSOLUTE WORST! customer service of any airline I have ever done business with. Sorry to hear about all the people who have lost out on tickets and for those likely not to get refunds, but hopefully someone down yonder will learn a bit about running an airline.

While on a 10 day vacation in Guadalajara, we were informed that our direct flight back to LA was now re-routed via Mexico City. Then on Saturday, we read in the newspaper that Mexicana had ceased all flights. Sunday at the airport, Mexicana told us they could get us on an AA flight back to LA 5 days later. All other airlines were booked to LA and flying standby was hopeless. We (a party of 6, including a 7 month old and a 2 year old, and a 7-month pregnant woman) were able to book tickets on a Volaris flight to Tijuana the next day --- full price and no discounts, but we were lucky to get it. We flew to Tijuana and crossed the border on foot (with luggage in tow) and were able to get a ride back to LA with family, though the train option was also there. Not a pleasant experience. We plan to demand that Mexicana pay for our Volaris flight and the extra night hotel stay, but aren't too hopeful.

We had been in Cancun from Aug 21 and leaving on Saturday Aug 28th at 5 pm. Mexicana had changed our flight 2 times during the week from a straight flight back to Chicago to going thru mexico city. We contacted the Airline on Friday evening to be told that everything was confirmed and we were good to go for Saturday. Little to our suprise when we woke up on Saturday there was an article online stating that they were haulting all flights as of noon Saturday. I spent 3 hours on the phone with Mexicana at $1.00 per minute to be hung up on. I called back for another hour and was told that there was nothing they could do for us. We could apply for a refund of the unused ticket. We purchased tickets back in February and got a great deal. There were no flights available on Saturday, so we needed to pay for an additional night at the resort and finally found a flight for $650 per person 1 way to get home by midnight on Sunday. I will never trust another International company again!! Our good deal we received on our trip now was doubled. TERRIBLE!!!!

I live in the UK and I did not know anything about mexicana going bankrupt until lovely travelocity emailed me to kindly notified me that my internal flights in Mexico was cxld due to the airline going bust. I rang the UK number and the line was off ( oh surprise surprise ) I filed the refund online and also sent a couple of eamils.
Today @ 4pm UK time the money has been refunded into my account £400.00 so I guess I should call my self mr lucky! good luck 2 every1 cherrio!!!

Fourteen days prior to our Cancun vacation and Mexicana goes bankrupt. We are thrilled and thank you Mexicana. We scheduled our vacation in 10/09 for 09/10 and in 02/10 I called the company and asked to cancel having had my dad killed hit and run - 3aunts & 2uncles pass away. The caribbean company didn't want to hear of it. So we were excited today due to we had no option. thank you for the favour, but this company tells customers if it rains while away they will pay $100 towards your next vacation. Two vacations in 6months, poured 2 days & we have never seen the $100 promise. I guess for us Cancun and cheap Caribbean trips are a nogo. LOL! I would be remiss if I didn't mention the sadness I felt when I read the above letters of weddings and family visits - some saving all they have - maybe for their last visit. First, I looked at airlines and Spirit Airlines had a great deal and non-stop. I'm sorry I didn't follow thru with the details. I truely hope this works for some travelers. I plan on saying special prayers and my Sunday Mass will also pray that all needs are taken care of for these trips. I often tell people about the 'olden' days, lol but in the 60's-70's airlines would go out of their way to service customers. I'm shocked airlines won't honour Mexicana tickets if just for great advertising for their company. Back then - airlines had doors separating classes, there were large tables in first class, the legroom was wonderful and on some trips I was lucky to have a plane that had a lounge on the '2nd' floor with a circular staircase. Just an ordinary plane. Such fun but I think of my nieces/nephews and all others that will never understand what flying was truely like and the fun that was had even with the employees. It was great the pilots let you watch them operate the aircraft in the air. Such a pleasure and a learning experience. Airlines cared and showed it in their service. I have called my parish and on the weekend we plan to have a short prayer service for the people needing a way to Mexico. All the above have great experiences awaiting them and now what do they do? Hope everyone finds solutions soon. Peace !!

We have return tickets from Cabo to Sacramento, Ca for November travel. Because they were purchased in April with our credit card, the credit card can do nothing to help us. Credit card purchases can only be denied if it was 60 days or less. Mexicana ruined a lot of travel plans and took our money.

8 of my girlfriends planned my bachelorette party in Cancun, Mexico. I was just informed last night (3 days before our flight) that all of our flights were cancelled. We were given the option of getting a refund which will take 45 days but as long as December 15th. I asked if we could just get credit towards another flight since I booked through Orbitz. The answer was no. Cheapest flight is atleast double what we originally paid. This has been an absolute nightmare for us all.

So we called American Airlines and yes, they offered us a 20% discount, but the fares they quoted us with the discount were higher than what we could get online with; not much help there.

We finally go through and spoke to a representative of Mexicana who made accommodations for us; we'll have to go to the airport and speak to a representative at the Mexicana counter, but as far as we know we have a confirmed flight. Instead of a direct flight from Chicago to Mexico, we now have to fly to Toronto and catch a connecting flight to Mexico city, at no cost to us. It best than having to dish out two grand. We still don't have a return flight, but we'll worry about that later.

I literally just got home from Cabo (12:30am) because of Mexicana halting their operations. I found out Saturday evening in Cabo and immediately called Orbtiz. They applied for the refund and I booked a new flight with AA and was able to get the 20% discount on top of a reasonable rate. I am so glad I did this on Saturday because the flight options were already limited. Flights were being sold out as I was speaking to the representative. Instead of a direct flight with Mexicana, I flew from Cabo to Dallas to LA.

Stressful trip to say the least, but I'm happy to be home.

Back in 1964, when i was 6 years old, my mom, a recently blonde and recent divorcee put me and my 5 year old brother in her bronze toned Baracuda and pushed the pedal til met old Mexico. Yes, all the way from Oakland to Guadalajara. I went to second grade there. It was belle epoch of my childhood. In September my husband and I hoped to celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary with our 18 and 20 year old kids and my adventurous mom on her 80th Birthday by taking a pilgrimage back to Guadalajara and on to Guanajuato.
It would have been the first family trip in many years. It was a nice thought. But i must say , i really feel for people trying to reach their family with very hard saved dollars.
May we all have good fortune with future travaels.
or should I say changuitos .

We had tickets to go to Mexico on the 5th for our fall term sabbatical and finding alternative tickets was very costly. I had been checking with the airline for weeks and getting no responses.
What a sad development for Mexico right before its Bicentennial, in what has been an awful year. I feel very sorry for all the families that lost their ability to be together and for the more than 8,000 employees who have lost their jobs in part because business, the unions and the government don't have enough basic trust in each other and sufficient skillful leadership to work out a solution before everyone lost in a very big way. We are going anyway--it is such a warm and wonderful country.

i was supposed to get married in mexico in nov. and now i had to cancel my wedding and all 50 of my guests now have to cancel their reservations and everything is ruined all because of mexicana.

We bought tickets back in February for a destination wedding in Isles de Murejes on September 3rd. We just found out Friday that they are bankrupt. Ticket prices are now more than double what they were in February and we can no longer afford the trip.

My girlfriend has been working two jobs all summer long just to save up, and she is very distressed. I haven't heard of any companies honoring Mexicana's tickets, but if you do, please write about it.

It's been five years since I last saw my father, my family and I had purchased tickets in April to visit Mexico. My wife also hasn't seen her family in five years and her grandfather will be turning 80 next week. As the oldest grandchild, she is heartbroken that she will not be able to join her family in the celebration of her grandfather's 80th birthday.

It took us about a year to save the money to buy our tickets and be able to go to Mexico to see our family. Now, Mexicana de Aviacion will not speak to us until 24 hours prior to our departure on September 2, 2010 and they cannot guarantee that we will be able to get a new flight. They are offering a refund, but the refund is not enough to purchase new tickets.

We are hoping for a miracle.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lori Rackl published on August 30, 2010 10:56 AM.

Spirit's carry-on fees take effect was the previous entry in this blog.

Cruise West woes: no new bookings is the next entry in this blog.

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