The use of the Skype dial pad is a little iffy when trying to "press # for the operator," so it took me a few tries. But within 2 minutes of getting a hold of a real human being, I was on my way to refund town.
For those who are looking at this entry as a result of a Google search (or just those who are nosy), here's what I did:
1. Call the NYC office: (212) 581 5600
2. Press 2. This will take you to the reservations department. On my first few tries I thought I should talk to the ticketing department, but that just led me to a dead end.
3. Explain your situation, and the representative will give you an email address (for a REAL person, not just a general department email!). You'll need to supply the following information: Your name, your reservation or ticket number, and your reason for requesting a refund. As the lady I talked to said, "We all know what your reason is, but we still need you to put it in writing for procedural purposes."
I asked specifically if I can expect my request to be granted and she emphatically said, "Yes, you will get your full refund." I didn't ask when because I knew that would be very much out of everyone's control at this point.
I did get a reply email (from a REAL PERSON!) saying that the accounting department will deposit my refund back into my account (or onto the credit card used when purchasing) within 21 days. That's a LOT better than I ever expected, and I'm still a little skeptical that it'll be done that quickly. I'm just glad it'll be happening at all!
If you booked your flight through a travel agent, you will be told to contact your agent and let him/her be the liason or take the financial hit. I guess we got lucky because we booked our flight directly through the Egypt Air website. If you booked through discount sites like Expedia or Travelocity, I'm afraid you might have a longer road ahead of you.
Best of luck to all travelers whose dreams of taking photos of you walking like an Egyptian in front of the Great Pyramid have been put on hold. One day, my friends. One day.