Airline Passenger’s Rights and Protection
Air travel has been quite frustrating over the last decade with more tarmac delays and cancellations than ever before. Knowing that your flight has been cancelled can be one of your worst air travel nightmares, especially if you are in a rush.
You need to know your rights as a passenger. It is important to note that your rights don’t come from state laws that are consumer friendly, but rather dictated by the federal statues, international treaties and some other regulations that sole practitioners aren’t used to dealing with.
Upon your ticket purchase and airport arrival, your major rights include:
- The Right to Compensation
The right to compensation for problems and issues with air travel. Passengers are entitled to financial compensation once the flight is cancelled. Airlines are also obliged to provide assistance.
If cancellation is announced, it must be at least twenty-four hours before the Estimated Time of Arrival, attributed to the air carrier. In such case, the passenger has the right to be notified beforehand of the cancellation, reimburse or rebook at their option.
Passengers have the right to be endorsed to another air carrier without having to pay for fare difference, reimbursed of the fair value, surcharges, taxes and other optional fees, rebook their ticket without additional charge. If cancellation of flight is due to other causes, such as force majeure and some other security and/or security reasons, they have the right to be reimbursed of the fare’s full value.
- The right to obtain accurate information before your purchase
- The right to obtain the full value of the service you purchased
- The Right to be Processed for Check-in
Any passenger shall not be considered a no-show or late, and shall not be denied of checkin when he/she is within the cordoned or other designated area of the air carrier for check-in at least one hour before the published ETD (Estimated Time of Departure, or within the time set prescribed by the carrier.
- The Right to Sufficient Time of Processing
For International airports, check-in counters must be open at least 2 hours before the Estimated Time of Departure.
There must be a separate dedicated counter that must be open for any flight close to check-in deadline in order to facilitate the passengers checking in at least one hour before the published Estimated Time of Departure.
One check-in counter must be open to prioritize senior citizens, PWDs and individuals who need handling or special assistance if practicable.
For all other airports, the check-in counters must be open at least an hour before the Estimated Time of Departure.
- The Right to Board Aircraft for the Purpose of Flight
Any passenger can’t be denied the right to board the aircraft without his/her consent.