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Beware Viva Aerobus

El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
106 posts
2 reviews
Beware Viva Aerobus

I posted this on the San Miguel forum after someone asked about Viva Aerobus. But then I realized because the bad travel experience for us actually was to/from Morelia I should probably post it here too.

These Viva Aerobus prices look amazing I know - we fell for it twice. However from our experience it is true about getting what you pay for.

We booked 2 different trips (first in November, second in late January) - each separate trip included two legs which were technically separate flights. First from Ciudad Juarez to Monterrey and then from Monterrey to Morelia.

The planes were clean and in good condition, the Monterrey terminal was nice and the flight attendants were helpful. After the first set of flights getting us into Morelia there was no indication of what was to come.

After spending an enjoyable trip in Morelia we returned to the airport 2 hours before our scheduled flight. As it turns out Viva Aerobus had changed the schedule moving the flight back several hours. When we inquired it appeared that the new schedule had been in place for a few weeks. Only they failed to notify any of the people who had tickets prior to the change. There were several other travelers in our situation.

Although we had scheduled plenty of time between the flights to catch our monterrey to Juarez flight the several hour change made that impossible - by just a few minutes.

Customer service was less than helpful. The flights for the next day were completely full and they said maybe we could be put on the late afternoon flight the day after next - maybe. No refunds, no vouchers, no compensation of any type because they are a discount airline.

Well prior to our first trip we had already bought a second trip for a long weekend into Morelia to see the butterflies in late January. We contemplated canceling our second trip but we really wanted to go and we figured they would have their kinks out by then (from November to late January)and we would call every week before hand to check the schedule.

So about three weeks before our scheduled trip we again call and are told the schedule is exactly the same as when we purchased them. Two days later we received what was labeled as a "receipt". Only by looking very carefully at it were we able to determine that the "receipt" showed a unilateral change in our morelia flights that they had made on our behalf.

They changed our Saturday to Tuesday itinerary to arriving in Morelia on Sunday afternoon and leaving Morelia on Monday afternoon. Somehow they felt confident that whatever business we had in Morelia should be accomplished in a little less than 24 hours.

We immediately got on the phone and were trying to work it out. They were no help - we can't control the schedules, etc. Although we had not officially cancelled our tickets at this point we were sure even if we were assured that the flights had been switched back that we would never have the confidence to enjoy our trip even if we were able to get there.

So three days before our scheduled trip (which we were no longer going on, but they didn't know that) we receive another "receipt". This one in the fine print showed that they had now made a change to the Juarez - Monterrey flight that would have made it impossible for us to make the Monterrey - Morelia flight if we had wanted to.

So out of 4 flights that we booked with them - 3 of them were changed within 3 weeks of travel and in one case 3 days of travel. There was no NOTICE of Change of Flight or anything like that only a receipt that if you didn't read very carefully you would not see the changes.

We travel a lot, my husband is from Mexico, there are no language issues with us and we are not high maintenance travelers. I have never had such a bad experience travelling.

Oh - they finally gave us a voucher for the second trip only. Anyone want $400 and something worth of credit on Viva Areobus? Our experience was so bad I don't think we could be convinced to fly them again - even for free.

Houston, Texas
3 posts
1. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

I was recently looking into flying from Austin, Tx to Cancun. I have not been looking forward to this trip until I found that we could save money by flying viva aerobus. Neither my husband nor I speak spanish, do you feel like this would be an issue for us? I have been very leery about boarding an airline that I dont know of any reputation yet... Please email me back at nicole212a@aol.com Thank You! Angela

Cozumel, Mexico
Destination Expert
for Cozumel, Merida
Level Contributor
48,449 posts
157 reviews
2. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

Just happened to see this post and thought I would reply. I am a former US airline employee living in Mexico and have used Viva a number of times without a problem. They are what they claim to be--a budget carrier with few frills. But, if you read their website carefully, they pretty much tell you that you are on your own--thats how they offer the low prices. They offer little in the way of customer service--and thats their intention.

So, if you want to be receiving updates of changes , etc., try a more expensive airline. But if you are willing to check with them or their website to keep updated, you will have a good experience with them. In my opinion, a very good value.

El Paso, Texas
Level Contributor
106 posts
2 reviews
3. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

I don't mind having to follow up with them. In fact for the second trip we decided not to cancel but to simply make sure we followed up with them regularly. But even after checking regularly we had our itinerary moved only 3 days before our flight. And these changes were not simply hour or two changes, but a complete change in itinerary.

At what point are you allowed to rely on your reservation? 2 days? 1 day? What if they change your return flight when you are already at your destination? At what point should they hold any responsibility?

Houston, Texas
3 posts
4. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

Well. I am willing to try the airline and if you were serious about the $400 voucher up for grabs I am more than willing to take it! let me know!

Level Contributor
1 post
15 reviews
5. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

Is it first come first served or can I arm wrestle Nicole for the voucher?

Cresson, TX
Level Contributor
1 post
8 reviews
6. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

I am willing to try it for the free voucher too. Please let me know if it is still available.

Waco, Texas
Level Contributor
29 posts
7. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

Whatever the guy in Cresson offers I'll double it. People in Cresson are always scheming for a free deal!

Houston, Texas
3 posts
8. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

hmm... i think first come, first served sounds the best to me! :) lol.

Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
18 posts
10 reviews
9. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

Gosh I really think I made a mistake!

My family of 4 can only afford a cancun vacation with a deal like this. So I did book for July before I read this:

"Pursuant to the Applicable Aviation Law and Regulations, vivaAeroBus may suspend the rendering of all of its scheduled flights without prior notice, for causes beyond its control, without any further responsibility and/or liability."

So I am setting my family up for a real nightmare aren't I? I think I just wasted $570 bucks.

Anyone want to make an offer for my tickets? Looks like it'll take $120 to change names on the tickets.

I cannot even book a hotel room for fear we might not make it and have not time to cancel.

Thursday, 24 July 2008


Thursday, 31 July 2008


If not, anyone suggest how I handle lodging?

Stupid in Dallas

Queretaro City...
Level Contributor
14,508 posts
10 reviews
10. Re: Beware Viva Aerobus

artillygirl - I'm not sure why you're panicking. Surely any airline can get grounded for "circumstances beyond its control" (as did all airlines on 9/11)? This is an extremely rare occurrence. The poster here had issues because of schedule changes but these are also very rare but unfortunately came together for this one person. Most of us have travelled on Vivaaerobus without issue so I really don't think you need be so pessimistic.

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