Airlines to waive certain fees for Irma-related student travel changes

The University of Miami announced today that American Airlines and JetBlue will waive certain fees for students with flights scheduled for the end of the fall semester.

Students traveling on American Airlines from Miami (MIA), Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) or West Palm Beach (PBI) with original travel dates from Monday, Dec. 11 through Saturday, Dec. 16 are eligible for fee waivers. The new travel dates must be from Monday, Dec. 18 through Saturday, Dec. 23. Fees will be waived for one change per ticket. A fare difference may apply.

Students traveling on JetBlue in and out of FLL or PBI with original travel dates from Tuesday, Dec. 5 through Wednesday, Dec. 15 can get date change or cancellation fees waived. Travel must have been booked by Tuesday, Sept. 5 to qualify, and any difference in airfare will apply.

Ombudsperson Jennifer Rau said Vice President for Student Affairs Patricia Whitely was “in contact with a few Canes to be able to make this possible.” Undergraduate Student Government and the Office of the Vice President and Provost were involved in negotiating with the airlines as well.

Many students expressed concerned about pre-booked travel when the university revised the academic calendar to account for class days missed because of Hurricane Irma and the storm’s aftermath. The semester was extended until Dec. 20, and the traditional final exams period was eliminated, replaced instead by exams during normal class time, at the discretion of professors.

To find out more about the fee waivers, students should call American Airlines at 1-800-446-7834 or JetBlue at 1-800-538-2583 and say they are a University of Miami student impacted by Hurricane Irma.

Featured illustration by Izia Lindsay.