5 On Your Side

Lost Plane Ticket Sends Dancing Preacher To 5 On Your Side

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GOLDSBORO, N.C. — A Wayne County woman flew to 5 On Your Side for help when a plane ticket she ordered online disappeared before she received it.

Takamella Newsome ordered a $325 round-trip ticket to the Bahamas from CheapTickets.com in July so she could attend the Dancing Preachers 2006 Conference.

"It's liturgical dance. We're just really going to gain a greater knowledge about dancing for Christ," Newsome said.

When the ticket didn't arrive as scheduled, she called the company. A little bit of investigating showed United Parcel Service left the package outside her apartment door.

UPS checked into the matter for a week before telling Newsome she was out of luck.

"They told me that the investigation was closed, and they couldn't tell me anything else because they deal strictly with the shipper and not the receiver," she said.

Newsome called CheapTickets.com again, and a representative told her she should buy another ticket and go in person to Miami to file a lost-ticket claim with the airline, which costs $100. If the original ticket was never used, the representative told her, the airline would refund the ticket cost.

"I felt like it was too bad, too sad, you know, you lost your money. This is the process you're going to have to go through. There's no other way," Newsome said.

Then, 5 On Your Side stepped in, calling both CheapTickets.com and UPS.

Initially, the Web site offered to pay only the $100 lost-ticket charge. Then, a spokeswoman for UPS said CheapTickets.com had to submit a claim in order for UPS to reopen its investigation.

The UPS spokeswoman said packages are rarely left at the door, and it's up to each driver to determine whether it's safe to do that.

The two companies finally worked it out, and Newsome got her $325 refund and headed to the Bahamas for her conference.