Rescheduled flight threatens family's dream vacation to Cancun

OAKLEY, Calif. (KGO) -- A change in schedule made by an airline nearly cost a young girl and her family a dream trip to Cancun with her soccer friends.

Ordinarily, an itinerary change made two months before departure is no big deal, but when it's tied to reservations to an all-inclusive resort, any change can set off an unwelcome chain reaction.

The Lawrence family gathers around 7-year-old Gianna.

The tight-knit household enjoyed an afternoon in the backyard in Oakley on a chilly winter day.

Big sister Elliana loves playing soccer, both with her team and her kid brother Jacob.

She looked forward to her vacation with other members of her soccer team and her family.

"It was going to be my first time going to Mexico and I really wanted to go," said the 11-year-old.

The family booked their flight in July with other soccer families, plus a non-refundable stay at an exclusive resort.

One month later, Interjet told the families that the flight would be delayed 24 hours and the previously non-stop flight would now have a six-hour layover.

"It was all over the news that they were having to displace flights because they were having itinerary issues," said Elliana's mother, Melissa.

At Mexico City International Airport this summer, nearly 5,500 Interjet passengers endured flight cancellations and delays.

In Melissa's case, the 24-hour delay would mean the family would be arriving at the non-refundable, non-changeable Mexican resort one day late.

"So we were going to be paying for a day we weren't going to be there, and instead of doing non-stop, we were also going to be waiting hours at another airport," Melissa said.

Melissa said Interjet had no other flights going out that week to Cancun. So she made reservations with another airline while putting in for a refund with Interjet.

"I kept praying that we were going to get the money back because obviously we needed it for so many other things," she said.

By September, the other soccer families began receiving refunds, but not the Lawrence family. Around Thanksgiving, the family suggested she contact 7 On Your Side.

She did, and we contacted Interjet.

Five hours later, Interjet contacted her promising a full refund of nearly $2,000, which she has already received.

"I had tried different emails. I had tried multiple phone numbers, and 7 On Your Side had the magic connections to get through," Melissa explained.

A spokeswoman for Interjet said she was not authorized to comment for this story.

The family had a wonderful time in Mexico.

"It was really fun," said Elliana.

"I like hanging out with her," said Jacob.

The family says the refunded money has gotten their new year off to a good start.

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

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