As I have been in Mexico since early January, I have taken a bunch of flights with Aeromexico in business (pricing has been usually excellent) and only now received a first flight cancellation notice (I typically book 5 to 10 days out).
I have previously noted that connecting itineraries in Mexico on Aeromexico are usually cheaper than direct ones, such as PVR-MEX is more expensive than PVR-MEX-ZIH.
Well. I rarely engage in hidden city ticketing or dropped segments, but I did book PVR-MEX-ZIH with absolutely no intention of taking the MEZ-ZIH segment 20 hours later after arriving in MEX.
I was happy to receive the following notice the day before the flights were going to take place:
The PVR-MEX segment was not affected, but the MEX-ZIH was canceled that I had no intention of taking that I can now perhaps use at some later date per their email (the segment has been left open).
Few things to note:
1. You should not engage in this kind of behavior with tickets issued by independent agents because airlines can reprice the itineraries with dropped segments and send the agency debit memo that you should take care of. Using an OTA won’t be an issue.
2. If there are direct flights between the destinations, the airline may rebook you to one without your consent. There is no PVR-ZIH, even on other airlines.
3. Don’t do it too often. If you drop segment continuously with the same airline, you may one day be met at the gate with an airline representative willing you to guide to the connecting flight to ensure that you don’t “miss” it.
4. Continuous dropping of a segment may also put your frequent flier account in danger (an audit or suspension). You can credit the flights to partner programs.
5. You should only travel with a carry-on. Airlines usually don’t short-check bags to your connecting point (revenue protection).
You should understand the pros and cons of this strategy and only do it when it works and cannot fail.
There are agencies, such as Kiwi (read more here), that sell you tickets with dropped segments and returns when you buy a one-way. Not good or honest.
Understandably, direct flights to/from Mexico’s capital are more expensive than connecting ones. The airline, however, cannot force you to make the connection.
However, you should not do this too often and never make such a booking using an independent agent.
This time, however, this worked even better than I had planned. The airline canceled the flight that I had no intention of taking, leaving the segment open, and I can now use it later if needed.