CONSUMER GROUP FILES LEGAL PETITION TO REINSTATE THE RECIPROCITY RULE
For more information call 1-800-662-1859 or email Paul@Flyersrights.org or Andrew@Flyersrights.orgCONSUMER GROUP FILES LEGAL PETITION TO REINSTATE THE RECIPROCITY RULE
WASHINGTON, Oct. 17, 2016 - FlyersRights.org,
the largest US based airline passenger group, has filed a formal
rulemaking petition with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)
calling for a return to the reciprocity rule in time for the holiday
Under the reciprocity rule, when a flight is
cancelled or excessively delayed, an airline must place the passenger on
the next available flight, regardless of airline, for no additional
This practice was largely abandoned after airline
deregulation in 1978. Since 2010, however, U.S. airlines were allowed to
merge into four big carriers, the number of flights has been reduced,
and load factors have reached historic highs of about 84%.
when a flight is cancelled, it now takes much longer to find an
alternative flight, and passengers are generally limited to the one
airline without paying a much higher price.
Paul Hudson, President of Flyersrights.org
and a member of the FAA Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee,
observed, "Several years of heightened computer outages have caused
thousands of flight delays, affecting millions of passengers. So the
American public badly needs the reciprocity rule back which worked
effectively for decades to minimize passenger delays and strandings.
The rule would increase the efficiency of the national air
transportation system by matching up empty seats on other airlines to
delayed or cancelled passengers at no net cost to the airline industry."
would also give airlines a needed incentive to improve reliability,
upgrade outdated computer systems and maintain proper reserves. As
those with good records would be financially rewarded and those with
poor records financially penalized, by having to pay for stranded
passengers' transportation on other carriers."
The DOT has the
authority to reinstate the reciprocity rule under its power to regulate
predatory and anticompetitive practices, and to act quickly by issuing
an emergency order.
We are commited to solutions for promoting airline passenger policies that forward first and foremost the safety of all passengers while not imposing unrealistic economic burdens that adversely affect airline profitability or create exhorbitant ticket price increases.
All American air carriers shall abide by the following standards to ensure the safety, security and comfort of their passengers:
Establish procedures to respond to all passenger complaints within 24 hours and with appropriate resolution within 2 weeks.
Notify passengers within ten minutes of a delay of known diversions, delays and cancellations via airport overhead announcement, on aircraft announcement, and posting on airport television monitors.
Establish procedures for returning passengers to terminal gate when delays occur so that no plane sits on the tarmac for longer than three hours without connecting to a gate.
Provide for the essential needs of passengers during air- or ground-based delays of longer than 3 hours, including food, water, sanitary facilities, and access to medical attention.
Provide for the needs of disabled, elderly and special needs passengers by establishing procedures for assisting with the moving and retrieving of baggage, and the moving of passengers from one area of airport to another at all times by airline personnel.
Publish and update monthly on the company’s public web site a list of chronically delayed flights, meaning those flight delayed thirty minutes or more, at least forty percent of the time, during a single month.
Compensate “bumped” passengers or passengers delayed due to flight cancellations or postponements of over 12 hours by refund of 150% of ticket price.
The formal implementation of a Passenger Review Committee, made up of non-airline executives and employees but rather passengers and consumers – that would have the formal ability to review and investigate complaints.
Make lowest fare information, schedules and itineraries, cancellation policies and frequent flyer program requirements available in an easily accessed location and updated in real-time.
Ensure that baggage is handled without delay or injury; if baggage is lost or misplaced, the airline shall notify customer of baggage status within 12 hours and provide compensation equal to current market value of baggage and its contents.
Require that these rights apply equally to all airline code-share partners including international partners.