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Get Automatic Compensation: United Integrates Voucher Feature into Mobile App

The new feature, which will automatically inform passengers of their options if their flight is delayed by more than hour, comes after the Department of Transportation called for all airlines to compensate disrupted passengers

by Fergus Cole

June 23, 2023

Photo: Courtesy of United Airlines

Passengers of United Airlines impacted by flight delays and cancellations can now get vouchers for meals, hotels, and rideshare services through the airline’s app.

The new feature, which has been recently integrated into United’s existing mobile app, is intended to reduce stress and save time for passengers affected by flight disruptions, as they won’t have to fill out online forms or wait in lengthy lines at customer service desks.

Now, affected passengers signed up to the app will automatically receive re-booking options, bag tracking information, and vouchers for hotels, meals, and ground transportation if eligible due to the severity of their flight disruption.

Photo: Courtesy of United Airlines

Despite having the lowest number of flight cancellations among all U.S. airlines during the first quarter of 2023, United had a significant number of flights affected by extreme weather, primarily due to the locations of its primary hub airports. Nevertheless, the airline has introduced this new feature.

United claimed to have engaged in market research to gauge the popularity of the new feature after finding that almost half of its customers use the airline’s app or website to search for compensation or alternative travel plans when their flights are disrupted. Its beta testing of the feature also found that customers responded well to receive benefits automatically. At the same time, United employees were also found to be grateful for the reduced stress burden on themselves.

“Our goal is to get our customers to their destination in time, but we know things don’t always go as planned, and that’s when a tool like this can make a real difference,” said Linda Jojo, Chief Customer Officer at United Airlines.

“Our new mobile app feature offers more transparency, saves time, and reduces stress for our customers, and it shortens lines at customer service desks so our employees can better assist passengers with complex issues or questions. Plus, it’s another example of United’s continued investment in new technology and tools.”

Photo: Courtesy of United Airlines

According to United, customers will be automatically notified via the app should their flight be delayed for an hour or more. They will then be able to check their flight status and re-booking options, follow the status and location of their checked bags, view hotel, meal, and rideshare vouchers they are eligible, and connect to a United customer service agent directly via call, text, or video chat should they require further assistance.

The service will also be available on United’s website, which can be accessed on computers or mobile devices.

Recently, United has updated its customer service policies in response to the Biden administration’s efforts to eradicate unfair policies. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) recently announced plans to mandate that airlines provide compensation to passengers for long flight delays or cancellations.