The Impact of New Airline Rules on Passengers

The Impact of New Airline Rules on Passengers

The Biden administration recently announced two new rules that will have a significant impact on the airline industry. The first rule aims to provide passengers with more transparency regarding extra fees. This means that airlines will now be required to clearly list and explain all additional charges on their websites or when providing fare prices offline. This is a step towards eliminating the practice of surprise junk fees and ensuring that customers are fully aware of the costs associated with their flights.

The second rule introduced by the Department of Transportation mandates that airlines must issue cash refunds automatically in certain cases. This includes situations where flights are canceled or significantly changed, baggage return is delayed, or customers do not receive inflight amenities that they have paid for like Wi-Fi. This move is aimed at making the refund process easier for passengers and avoiding the need for them to haggle or request their money back.

One of the key provisions of the new rules is the elimination of discount bait-and-switch tactics. This practice involves airlines offering discounts that may seem to apply to the overall flight price but in reality only apply to a smaller portion of the cost. By requiring airlines to clearly and accurately list all fees, this rule aims to prevent customers from being misled by deceptive pricing strategies.

The new airline rules are part of President Joe Biden’s broader efforts to combat what the White House refers to as “corporate rip-offs.” By ensuring that passengers are treated fairly and are provided with the services they paid for, these rules seek to hold airlines accountable for their actions. This includes banning extra seating fees for parents trying to sit next to their children, making certain amenities mandatory, and expanding accommodations for passengers who use wheelchairs.

While state attorneys often receive complaints from customers about airline practices, only the federal government has the power to enforce passenger protections. This is why the Biden administration is taking proactive steps to address customer grievances and hold airlines accountable for any violations. By partnering with state attorneys and introducing new regulations, the government aims to streamline the response to complaints and ensure that passengers are treated fairly.

The new airline rules introduced by the Biden administration represent a significant step towards improving transparency and accountability in the airline industry. By requiring airlines to be more upfront about extra fees, issuing cash refunds automatically, and eliminating deceptive pricing tactics, these rules aim to protect passenger rights and ensure a better flying experience for all travelers.


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