Thursday, July 21, 2011

Just When It Looked Like Booking A Flight Was Going to Get Simpler....

Runway photo by M McCafrey
It's been a discouraging day for travel news. Beyond the ridiculous tussle over re-authorizing the FAA, it seems like the Department of Transportation is facing some serious stymieing, too...and that's possibly even worse news for flyers.

Several months ago, the DOT announced a slew of sensible new regulations designed to make airline pricing easier to decipher; and flights themselves more worry free.

But because of a series of lawsuits and petitions launched by the airlines, the DOT is going to have to delay implementing these new consumer protection rules.

Among the rules being delayed are:
  • Those that would have required the airlines to do a better job of informing the public about baggage fees and other hidden costs.
  • Rules allowing passengers to cancel tickets with no penalty within 24 hours of booking. (A personal favorite of mine. I can't tell you how many frantic calls we get from listeners to our radio show who hit the purchase button for airfares, sometimes accidentally, and then find minutes or mere hours later that they need to change their flight plans.)
  • A rule that would standardize the baggage costs and other fees when codeshared airlines are used for multi-flight itineraries.
Now, instead of going into effect at the end of the summer, these rules will go into place on January 23.


Industry forces have NOT succeeded in delaying the implementation of rules to increase the minimum compensation offerred to unwillingly bumped fliers; or the extension of the tarmac delay maximum time allotment for international flights. Thankfully, those will go into effect on August 23.


  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    1. great advice, seems that you are an expert in this kind of business.