I booked a ticket from Israel to New York. It was a 9AM flight to land in JFK 2PM EST. I thought that would be enough time to get in after luggage and everything for Shabbas because I live only 30 min from JFK.
However, right before boarding I realized my flight was going to Newark not JFK. I was so confused I thought I had made a mistake in booking my ticket so I quickly got on my computer and checked and saw I did in fact book a ticket to JFK not Newark. So I quickly ran to the boarding desk and told them that I had booked my ticket to JFK not Newark. They told me that a few hours prior to the flight the JFK flight was cancelled and they put everyone on the JFK flight onto the Newark flight, which was leaving at the same time.
The only problem was, was that I live very far from Newark and I had planned for someone to meet me at JFK not Newark and I couldn't find anyone to pick me up from there so close to shabbas with Friday rush hour traffic. I kept complaining to the lady and she kept telling me there is nothing we can do.
I ended up getting on the flight and thanks to global entry I was outa there quickly an took public transportation to get home and I got home minuted before Shabbas. This was absolutely outrageous to me. It's one thing to switch my flight to a different flight to JFK, but to completely switch me to another airport/ another state without even telling me, absolutely outrageous. Especially ELAL who apparently is so sensitive to "Jewish tradition" didn't care about people's plans for shabbas.
Any advice on what I can do for compensation?
It's worth a call. I had a similar experience once when I had an 11pm flight LAX-CDG-TLV that left Saturday night. It was tricky because it was the only flight I could find that left late enough to be after Shabbos, but early enough to land in Israel in time for me to be where I needed to be on Monday.
Shabbos ends, and I check my phone, and there are 3 messages from Air France, all from during Shabbos Fri/Sat: the flight was cancelled, they needed me to call to rebook, and then finally they said they rebooked me for 2pm on Shabbos! So now I had missed my flight, and there was nobody on the phone who could tell me what to do next.
I ended up going to the airport and making a stink, and they got me finally onto another airline that allowed me to make it to my destination in time. But I regret not asking for further compensation as I lost an E+ seat that was paid for. Before I knew about Dan's site.
Anyway, call them, what do you have to lose?