The 'man who flies for free' actively tries to get bumped from flights -- here's how to score the most out of missing your flight

Scott Keyes of Scott’s Cheap Flights loves getting bumped on a flight because it puts him in a great spot for negotiating a deal. Here he explains how to get the most out of getting bumped. Following is a transcript of the video.

Scott Keyes: I love getting bumped from flights. And the reason why I love getting bumped from flights is it puts you in an amazing bargaining position.

My name is Scott Keyes. I’m the CEO and co-founder of Scott’s Cheap Flights.

You know, especially after the recent news controversy, that really tough to watch videos from that United flight, airlines want to do whatever they can to avoid being in the news for that. And so they are much more willing, especially nowadays, to say, rather than just give you $US250 voucher they will go up to $US500. They will go up to six, eight, $US1,000 really quick. And not only can you get a lot more money, whether in terms of actual refund or voucher from the airlines for being bumped for volunteering, you can also negotiate other things.

So, if I get bumped from my flight back to Portland tomorrow, I’m going to say, “OK. I’ll do it. I want $US1,000 travel credit. I also would like to be put on business class or first class on the next flight to Portland that actually get on, and how about some lounge passes in the meantime so I can hang out and eat and drink while I’m waiting for that flight.”

Believe you me, they will, they will play ball if you start negotiating, especially if they’re really pressed They have, like, “We need 5 people to volunteer and nobody’s getting up to volunteer.” You can be in a really good bargaining position.

I can get a flight two hours later, get $US1,000 for it. I’ll hang out. I’ll have a beer in the bar, it will be great, and I’ll get home a couple hours later, and be $US1,000 richer for it. One of the things that I’ll be sure to do, let’s say I volunteer but they actually need two more volunteers as well and they keep having to ratchet up the price.

I’ll tell them, “Look. I’m not doing this unless I get what the other people get.” So maybe they don’t get two more volunteers until they get to $US500 voucher. I’ll tell them, “Look. That’s what I want too.”

Even once you’ve already kind of put yourself out there make sure you’re getting the most money possible and return.

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