As a follow-up to Can I simply apply for a chargeback on my credit card if my flight was cancelled and I'm unable to reach the airline?, I was contacted by Condor today with the following email:
We have unfortunately had to ascertain that as of today your account for flight booking / extra service xxxxxxx still shows an outstanding balance of USD xxx. Please transfer the due amount due to the following bank, stating the references specified below, by no later than xx.01.2021:
If you do not pay the claim amount by the deadline mentioned above, we will ask our service provider TESCH Inkasso Forderungsmanagement GmbH to take over the processing of the case, without a further reminder from us, and to pursue our claims plus any charges incurred.
The story is that I had a flight from Seattle to Prague in March that had the Frankfurt->Prague leg cancelled. I've called Condor a couple of times, but they've refused to do anything about it as they were claiming that the Frankfurt->Prague leg is run by Lufthansa and thus I should contact them for a refund. This was of course complete nonsense (my contract is with Condor, not with Lufthansa), so I asked my US bank for a chargeback which was successful.
Now, I'm 100% sure I'm in the right here as the flight did not happen on time, nor was I offered a rerouted ticket and there's no way Condor could possibly dispute this. But what should I do about it in the meantime?
- Ignore? I live in the US so Condor would have a hard time coming after me, but I'd rather not hire a US lawyer to fight it in case they do somehow.
- Pay up? Its a relatively small amount (~300 USD), but for me its a matter of principle not to pay for a service that wasn't provided.
- Try talking to them? Sounds futile based on my previous interactions back in March.
- Hire a German lawyer and fight it? Possible, but sounds like I'd waste more than the $300.
- Complain to a consumer agency in Germany or the FAA or some other government authority? If so, which one?
I've found a similar thread on a German forum so it looks like Condor is now actively pursuing these chargebacks. A good answer would thus be useful to hundreds if not thousands of travelers in the same boat.