United to Honor Tickets Sold for $0

Company won't say how much it is losing

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Sep 14, 2013 5:30 AM CDT

(Newser) – Congratulations to all those lucky travelers who booked flights via the United Airlines website during a few magical hours yesterday: Tickets were accidentally sold for free, and the company says it will honor them. United isn't saying how many tickets were sold or much it will lose, reports Bloomberg. Nor it is clear how the glitch happened, though a spokesperson chalks it up to human error, not a computer snafu, notes NBC News.

Most people who scooped up tickets paid only a $2.50 per leg security fee put in place after the 9/11 attacks, including this Chicago traveler—a lawyer—who got six tickets to LA for all of $60. “They took the high road, said, 'We made a mistake.' It may cost them some money on the front end, but it saves them potential litigation and bad press.”

A United Airlines jet takes off from Pittsburgh International Airport.
A United Airlines jet takes off from Pittsburgh International Airport.   (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)
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