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Where to get proof for a trip delay or cancellation coverage claim

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This article was last updated May 08, 2015, but some terms and conditions may have changed or are no longer available. For the most accurate and up to date information please consult the terms and conditions found on the issuer website.

If you used a credit card with trip delay or trip cancellation coverage like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, Citi Prestige® Card*, or United℠ Explorer Card, you could be covered if you encounter a long flight delay or end up having to cancel part of your travel arrangements.

For example, some cards offer $500 to reimburse hotel expenses or meals during long delays. Or they may cover any nonrefundable travel purchases that you can’t use because your flight’s delay makes it impossible to use them.

The catch is you need some sort of proof you had a flight delay when you file a claim.

And simply taking a screen shot of your flight status screen might not cut it.

But there are some policies in place that will let you get the proof you need…

American Airlines is the easiest.

They have an online form you can fill out to request a verification letter can be sent. Just have your flight date, and personal information, and they’ll look up the records to back you up.

Screen Shot 2015-05-08 at 7.12.48 PM

United is a little more informal.

You can email United on delayletter@united.com with your confirmation number, names of passengers, and the email or mailing address where you want the letter sent. It takes about 5 to 10 days to process.

Southwest asks that you call customer relations to get proof. You can reach them on (214) 932-0333 and press option 3. An agent will take your request for an email that documents your delay, but be prepared for long hold times on their customer relations number. Dialing reservations won’t be of any help, as only the customer relations hotline can generate the letter.

Delta, JetBlue, Alaska, and Virgin America don’t have any online policy either.

Just call their main reservations lines and request a letter, and they’ll generate one on airline letterhead.

An alternative is to deal with it right on the spot.

Sometimes airlines can generate a ‘Military Excuse‘ printout that details a delay. It’s meant to be cover for your supervisor if you’re late, and you don’t need to be in the military to request one. So if you’re willing to wait in line at the gate or customer service counter at the airport, it can save you having to call in later for proof.

Just make sure the agent notes the delay was longer than the threshold required by your card’s coverage, which can be 12 hours or more to be eligible for reimbursement.

*The information related to the Citi Prestige® Card has been collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.


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