Can an airline charge you for a ticket it canceled? If you said “not in America” you’re right.

Barbara Salvadore booked a ticket from Frankfurt to Vienna last fall through Air Berlin. But when she called the carrier to confirm her flight, a representative told her her tickets had been canceled because of a problem with her credit card. She went to the airport on the day of her departure to see if she could use another card, but the airline insisted that she pay a walk-up fare that was seven times higher than the original price. She decided to take the train, instead.

End of story? Not quite.

I received a letter from Air Berlin stating I owed them money for the flight that I booked. I e-mailed them back, explained to them that they were the one who canceled my flight and I did not fly Air Berlin.

I received my second letter today stating I owe Air Berlin 149 Euro or they will take legal action against me.

I am clueless why I would owe Air Berlin money since I did not fly with them and they canceled my flight. From my e-mail correspondence with them, they do not seem to understand they are asking for payment for a service not rendered.

I thought there must be some kind of misunderstanding, so I contacted Air Berlin on Salvadore’s behalf. Diane Daedelow, a spokeswoman for the airline, responded:

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  • Elliott

    Christopher Elliott has been called one of the world’s leading travel experts. But his focus isn’t on the destination, or ev…

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