New Airline Rules Proposed

Once again, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood has stepped forward where Congress fears to tread in order to rein in the airline industry’s excesses. That man is in danger of becoming my hero.

LaHood is proposing a new set of rules on how airlines operate, which he said he would like to have in play by fall, as The New York Times reports. The new regulations would:

  • increase compensation for passengers involuntarily bumped from flights to as much as $1,300
  • allow passengers to make and cancel reservations within 24 hours without penalty
  • require full and prominently displayed disclosure of baggage fees as well as refunds and expense reimbursement when bags are not delivered on time
  • require fair price advertising
  • prohibit price increases after a ticket is purchased
  • mandate timely notice of flight status changes¬†

It’s too bad the government has to step in to force airlines to treat¬†their own customers¬†decently, but that’s the state of the industry today.

It makes me wish that the Department of Transportation had jurisdiction over hotel pricing. Somebody like LaHood needs to stop hotels from hiding their real rates with mandatory “resort fees” and other subterfuges.

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