Example Scenario #1: Chase Trip Delay Reimbursement

It’s been a while since I’ve published a post detailing how Chase (and Citi) might over up to $500 in hotels, food, and more the next time your trip’s delayed.

For those of us who missed out, you can read the full post here. But it can all be neatly summed up like this:

Chase Trip Delay Reimbursement

After reviewing my past posts, I realized I never gave any examples of how I used this benefit. So if you’re a case/example-oriented learner like I am, I thought it might be useful to pull together two scenarios (the other one’s here) where Chase reimbursed me for expenses incurred during my flight delay.

In the first scenario:

  • The delay occurred on my return, on a routing different from what I had originally purchased.
  • I stacked Chase trip delay reimbursement with American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts benefits.
  • I declined cash/cash-equivalent (i.e. airline credits) compensation for the delay, instead opting for “non-monetary” compensation in the form of airline miles.
  • After being stuck overnight, I booked the *latest* flight out the next-day, instead of the first morning flight, since that worked better for my schedule.

The Delay

I found myself in Nashville on a chilly Thursday afternoon, ready to head home after a long week on-site. My original routing had me connecting in Atlanta before heading to San Francisco.

Original Flight Delay BNA SFO

But shortly after boarding, we were told that the aircraft’s forward exit door wasn’t closing properly. The pilot announced that he’d called a mechanic to take a look, probably figuring it’d be best not to have the plane’s door fly open mid-flight.

Since I had a relative shortly 1-hour connection, it quickly became apparent that I was going to mis-connect if I stayed in Nashville a minute longer. So along with a few other passengers, I de-planed to see what alternative routes were available.

With access to the BNA SkyClub, I bypassed what appeared to be a fast-growing and increasingly-angry mob at the gate to figure out what my options were. Turns out, there was a flight connecting in Minneapolis with continuing service on to San Francisco later that evening.

Delta Interrupted Travel BNA MSP

The connection here would be tight too (if I remember correctly, it was <30 minutes), but I at least had a chance of making it.

To cut a long story short, the flight to Minneapolis ended up being a bit delayed as well – and I missed the last flight to San Francisco for the day.

I was going to be stuck in Minneapolis overnight.

In different circumstances, I’d be freaking out (or at least fuming) by this point. It was the dead of winter, and I was going to be stuck in a city where windchills regularly pushed the temperatures to -50 Farenheit. Instead, I was calmly booking my accommodation in Minneapolis before the plane had even left Nashville. Here’s why:

  • My flight was delayed due to a mechanical issue, and
  • The delay required an overnight stay, even though it was in a city that wasn’t part of my original booking.

With these two requirements satisfied, I knew that Chase trip delay coverage had kicked-in. Travel nightmare successfully avoided!

Once we landed in Minneapolis, I made sure to get an official airline statement of the delay before I’d left the airport. This was my first delay covered by Chase, and I didn’t want to deal with the hassle of getting proper documentation after the fact. Would a screenshot of an airline status page qualify? Would Delta even care about getting me everything I needed?

I didn’t want to find out, so I requested an airline military excuse with official-looking signatures and everything:


Flight Delay Military Excuse BNA MSP

The first statement was a little vague, so I politely asked a second agent to include the specific flight numbers, reason for delay (in this case, an “AC [aircraft] mechanical issue”), and the fact that I was “forced to overnight” in MSP. I ended up including the first statement in my claim because I thought it provided important context as to what I was doing in MSP in the first place.

When offered a voucher, I declined and asked if I could receive a few SkyMiles instead. I wasn’t sure if a travel voucher qualified as “monetary compensation,” which might disqualify me from being able to submit a claim. 

The agent happily obliged, and applied 9,000 SkyMiles to my account:

Mileage Credit Trip Delay BNA MSP

With everything in hand, I jumped in a cab and rode off to the Hotel Ivy, an SPG Luxury Collection Hotel, in the center of the city. The weather was indeed well below zero, and I was grateful to not be stuck curbside waiting for an airport hotel shuttle.


Hotel Ivy Minneapolis Lobby

I wasn’t sure what Chase would think about reimbursing a hotel booked through American Express, but I figured I might actually be saving them some money since my FHR stay included free breakfast and a $100 food & beverage credit. Plus, it’d be hard to argue that this arrangement wasn’t “reasonable” when the going rate, including the benefits, was $199:

Hotel Ivy 199 Rate

I don’t have any pictures of this property on-hand, so you’ll have to take my word that it was really nice. Upon arrival, I received a complimentary upgrade to an executive 1-bedroom suite, with a spacious bathroom, and enjoyed a great dinner at the hotel’s Porter & Frye restaurant (now re-branded as Monello).

Hotel Ivy Room Charges

Instead of taking the first flight back to San Francisco the next morning, I decided to hang around Minneapolis since I had a few early-morning meetings and didn’t have to check-out until 4pm. I even had a chance to wander a bit in the afternoon, visiting the old Gold Medal Flour factory and walking along Mississippi River.

Minneapolis Mill City

And before you ask, no, I didn’t claim reimbursement for the cost of admission to the Mill City Museum ($10) . 😉

The day passed pretty quickly, and before I knew it, it was time to head back to the airport for my evening flight home. Delta was nice enough to bump me to first class for the travel interruption, and even nicer to extend it to my later flight instead of the early morning flight they had originally booked for me.

Delta Interrupted Travel BNA MSP

Claims Process

As with all Chase trip delay claims, the process starts with a form that you can request over the phone. Just call the number on the back of the card that includes this benefit and request to be transferred to someone who can help you with “trip delay reimbursement.”

After receiving the claim form via email, I sent a quick reply back with all the necessary attachments and language I thought a claims adjuster might appreciate:

Sample Email Trip Delay Reimbursement BNA

The total claim amount came to $336.90, which I further specified to only include expenses that were explicitly enumerated in my credit card benefits agreement. I also added a comment confirming that I didn’t receive any monetary compensation from the airline and hadn’t filed a claim with anyone else for the same expenses. In retrospect this might’ve been overkill, but I included it anyways as a show of good faith.

In my email, I also attached:

  • The confirmation email receipt I received from Delta at the time of booking,
  • My Chase Sapphire Preferred credit card statement showing that the original flight was charged to a covered card (with miscellaneous information redacted),
  • Both military excuses in this post,
  • The notice of a travel disruption as well as the final ticket to San Francisco (also included in this post),
  • A single consolidated PDF of all my expense receipts, which were in this case just my hotel folio and two taxi receipts,
  • and the signed claim form.

In all, the entire process took about half an hour from start to finish, and I emailed everything in before I started boarding my flight home.


When it comes to insurance claims, I like to file and forget. So I typically err on the side of including too much information. It’s a pain to have to deal with the back and forth of missing information requests, which ultimately delay your claim’s approval.

In this case, everything turned out great, and the next time I heard from Chase was when I received a check in the mail for the full amount, just under 2 weeks of finally getting home.

I’ll post one more example with slightly different circumstances shortly, but in the meantime feel free to check-out my full post on this benefit here. Happy travels!

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