There will be new rules in the US to protect passengers from airline delays and cancellations

There will be new rules in the US to protect passengers from airline delays and cancellations
The Joe Biden administration has announced that it is developing new regulations that will require airlines to compensate passengers and cover their meals and hotel rooms if they are stranded for reasons within the airline’s control (REUTERS/Jim Vondruska/File Photo)

In January, more than 3,700 flights were delayed and more than 640 canceled across the United States due to a computer malfunction. The problem was solved, but by that time the travelers to that country had had enough: they had already faced A huge number of holiday flights are canceled amid the winter storms And a meltdown with employee technology at Southwest Airlines. There were long lines, lost baggage and countless cancellations and delays over the summer, when demand for travel soared after the COVID-19 pandemic subsided, but was met with staff cuts at airports and airlines.

Southwest Airlines Almost cancelled 17,000 trips in December during the outage, and the U.S. Department of Transportation and Justice Department are investigating whether the airline scheduled more flights than it could actually handle.

It is because of the pandemic that airlines have pushed tens of thousands of workers to resign or retire early. But since November 2020 they have added some 118,000 new workers What’s more, they now have it 5% more employeesAccording to figures from the Ministry of Transportation. However, the problems did not seem to be over.

For this reason, the Govt Joe Biden announced that it is developing new regulations This may require airlines to compensate passengers and cover their meals and hotel rooms if they are stranded for reasons within the airline’s control.

The US government has been making a series of decisions for some time now to crack down on airlines and enhance the protection of passengers on domestic and international flights departing from or arriving in the US. It’s seeking airlines to improve customer service — rather than deteriorate it, as all frequent flyers can attest — before the peak summer travel season begins.

It is not yet known when these new rules will be published (Reuters/Brian Snyder/file photo)

Some of the battles he has fought to protect consumers from airlines include his opposition to family seat fees; investigation of ten airlines for non-refund of tickets; His pressure on Southwest Airlines to do more after the holiday crash, among other things.

April report by the Congressional Government Accountability Office He blamed airlines for the rise in cancellations.

For the first time, they are looking Requiring airlines to pay compensation beyond ticket refundswhich covers expenses incurred by consumers, such as rebooking on another flight, in the event of a cancellation or delay of several hours.

“When an airline causes a flight to be canceled or delayed, passengers do not have to pay the bill,” the transport minister said in a statement. Buttigieg House.

It is not yet known when these new rules will be published, because writing and finalizing the rules could take months or even years. A proposal was introduced in July 2021 to force airlines to reimburse passengers for late baggage fees or in-flight services that are not operating: it has not yet been finalized.

There is still no legal requirement for airlines to compensate passengers for delayed or canceled flights, however European Union Some other countries will require compensation of up to 600 euros in cases of major delays.

Southwest Airlines canceled nearly 17,000 flights in December during a service failure (Reuters/Shelby Tauber/File Photo)

For the time being and until the new regulations are published, should an airline cancel a flight – for any reason – passengers are entitled to reimbursement request From the unused portion of their ticket and some extras such as what they paid for extra baggage or a specific seat. But airlines often try to convince consumers to accept a travel voucher, rather than a refund.

After massive delays and cancellations last summer, the Department of Transportation posted an online customer service dashboard to put pressure on airlines. Provides information to air travelers about airlines’ obligations to families traveling with young children and customers who experience significant flight disruptions due to circumstances within the airline’s control.

American AirlinesThe Washington, D.C.-based trade association and lobby group representing the largest US airlines said in a statement that airlines have no incentive to delay or cancel flights, and that more than half of the cancellations in the last two years have been due to “extreme weather” or control disruptions. traffic. “Airlines have taken responsibility for the challenges under their control,” he added.

The ten largest airlines in the United States have committed to provide cash or coupons for meals When a cancellation causes a passenger to wait at least three hours for another flight. If you’re stranded in the night, they promise, too Pay for the accommodation of the passengers. At least nine of the ten airlines: Frontier Airlines has not made this commitment.

All resisted offering monetary compensation for the delays.

Read on:

Thousands of flights have been delayed or canceled in the United States after a computer malfunction
Southwest has once again canceled thousands of flights in the United States and has come under scrutiny from regulators
Europe will soon allow phone calls on flights, and the United States is considering following in its footsteps

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