United Airlines sells 'free' tickets on website
September 13, 2013 -- Updated 1052 GMT (1852 HKT)
Human error lead to numerous $0 fare (plus tax) tickets being sold on United's U.S. domestic routes.
- Customers bought $0 fare tickets on United Airlines' website
- Buyers spread the word before United corrected the error in about 15 minutes
- Mistake blamed on glitchy human
- United hasn't stated whether or not it will honor the tickets
(CNN) -- Just when you thought there were no more air-fare bargains left to be found online ...
Customers cruising United Airlines' website for tickets on Thursday got a pleasant surprise.
As reported by Forbes, air fares between cities such as Washington, DC and Minneapolis were being sold on the site for $0 to $10.
Ticket prices on other domestic routes were displayed as $0, plus $5 tax.
2012: Best time to buy airline tickets
Word quickly spread around the Internet and savvy buyers scooped up untold numbers of the dream tickets before United spotted the error.
The $0 fare and other wildly reduced fares appear to have been available for about 15 minutes, before United shut down its online reservations system, reporting that its site was undergoing maintenance.
"One of our filings today contained an error which resulted in certain fares being displayed as zero. We have corrected this error, " said United in a statement that also blamed human error for the mistake.
The site has since resumed normal operations.
The tickets are sold, now what?
The question now: will United honor the erroneously priced tickets?
Sales of airline tickets based on erroneous fares are nothing new.
In 2012, as reported by hackmytrip.com, Singapore Airlines, United Airlines and Travelocity all wrangled with the problem.
Some believe companies should stand by their sales and accept the consequences of their own mistakes.
Others say airlines shouldn't be held accountable for honest mistakes.
United has yet to issue a statement regarding its plans on whether or not to honor the tickets sold at mistaken fares.
Should United Airlines honor the tickets it sold Thursday for $0, $5 and $10? Leave a comment below.
Part of complete coverage on
March 5, 2014 -- Updated 1825 GMT (0225 HKT)
Coffee culture has spread across the globe. Here are its touchstone cities.
March 5, 2014 -- Updated 0218 GMT (1018 HKT)
A few companies are looking into developing supersonic business jets -- one of which is throwing windows out of the equation.
March 4, 2014 -- Updated 0900 GMT (1700 HKT)
Singapore has dethroned Tokyo to become the world's most expensive city to live in 2014, according to a new survey.
March 4, 2014 -- Updated 0332 GMT (1132 HKT)
The Asia Hotel Art Fair turned one Hong Kong property into a cool contemporary art space.
March 3, 2014 -- Updated 0226 GMT (1026 HKT)
Is there a worse city in the world to be marked out as a tourist?
March 10, 2014 -- Updated 1128 GMT (1928 HKT)
Communication mix ups between pilots and traffic controllers occur daily. Here's why you're still safe.
February 21, 2014 -- Updated 1127 GMT (1927 HKT)
With a rake, some rope and a beach, Andres Amador creates mesmerizing artworks that last only until the next high tide.
February 28, 2014 -- Updated 1032 GMT (1832 HKT)
Your phone's confiscated. Your fingerprints are taken. You're going to prison. But don't worry, it's just for lunch.
February 27, 2014 -- Updated 0606 GMT (1406 HKT)
Sex, museums, cheese -- here's what France does better than the rest of us.
March 4, 2014 -- Updated 1648 GMT (0048 HKT)
Panda, orangutan, sea turtles -- you can still see these threatened creatures in the wild, but probably not for long.
February 25, 2014 -- Updated 0254 GMT (1054 HKT)
If it's worth waiting an hour for a burger, it must be alright, yeah?
March 3, 2014 -- Updated 0829 GMT (1629 HKT)
The stench of grilled meats, the heady high of free wine, the sounds of strumming serenaders -- every February Cyprus puts on one of the world's best parties.
February 24, 2014 -- Updated 1741 GMT (0141 HKT)
For a film about travel, "Gringo Trails" almost makes you never want to leave home again.
February 14, 2014 -- Updated 0609 GMT (1409 HKT)
Maldives tops a select list. But where would you spend your ideal honeymoon?
February 24, 2014 -- Updated 0050 GMT (0850 HKT)
Asian airlines want to go places -- but they might not have enough pilots to get them there.
Today's five most popular stories