The mother of shark attack victim Adam Strange was refused a compassionate waiver of Jetstar's fees when she asked to bring forward a booking to Auckland after learning of her son's death.
Jeanette Strange was in Paraparaumu, where she lives, when told of the tragedy.
She had been due to fly to Auckland next week, but rushed to find an earlier flight to be with her family.
A relative, Kay Cresswell, phoned Jetstar on her behalf but was told Mrs Strange would have to pay $350 to change her flight.
Jetstar has since contacted Mrs Strange and apologised.
Last night, a spokesman said it reviewed requests to waive fare-change fees on compassionate grounds case by case. It required supporting documentation.
"Jetstar appreciates this would have been a stressful situation and regrets if the service received by her relative from our call centre caused further distress."