Government proposes passenger friendly norms for domestic flyers. From August, you may be able to cancel your domestic air ticket within 24 hours of booking the same without cancellation charges.
Government proposes passenger friendly norms for domestic flyers
The government considered the full refund if air tickets canceled within 24 hours of booking. Soon from August, you may be able to cancel your domestic air ticket within 24 hours of booking without any cancellation charges for flights that are at least four days away from departure.
Also, it will not matter whether you booked the ticket directly from the airline company or through an agent or travel portal during claiming the refund. The rules will apply to all airlines and in turn on travel portals and agents, in cases of cancellation charges.
Yesterday the aviation minister issued a draft passenger charter which among others has this passenger-friendly proposal where the Government proposes passenger friendly norms for domestic flyers for increasing compensation for delayed flights, capping cancellation fees, and providing easier check-in processes. It has also proposed monetary benefits to passengers for missing a connecting flight.
The measures would contribute to hassle-free travel for passengers. The government has asked airlines to earmark seats for differently-abled passengers and hold them till a little before departure.
As per the report of the Airlines, the most delays issue is due to infrastructure constraints and proposed steps will increase their financial burden. By keeping in mind about those allegations the Government has taken this initiative which will beneficiate both airlines and flyers with passenger rights getting more weight.
What Government proposes if Airline’s faults lead to?
Government proposes passenger friendly norms for domestic flyers where under the proposed rules,
# Airlines have to offer the option of the full refund to passengers if the flight is delayed for over four hours and the delay is communicated more than 24 hours in advance.
# Airlines must offer alternate flight within two hours of the booked scheduled departure time or refund the fare.
# If the flight takes place the day after schedule, the airline will have to offer free hotel accommodation and transfers.
# The passenger charter also proposes compensation of up to Rs 20,000 if a passenger misses a connecting flight.
# Airlines are opposing the move on the grounds that they should not be held accountable for missed connections if the journeys are on two different PNRs.
# In the case of delays on the tarmac, passengers must be given refreshments if the aircraft was delayed on the tarmac for over an hour and must be given the option of not traveling if the delay was more than two hours.
# Airports must provide passengers with free 30 minutes WiFi services.
# Airlines will also be required to cap cancellation charges, which cannot be higher than the basic fare plus fuel surcharge.
# Simultaneously the ministry has proposed an increase in compensation for loss of life and baggage in air accidents. Compensation limits for death or injuries in the case of international and domestic travel will be the same.
# Airlines to have designated seats for persons with disabilities which will remain blocked until close to the time of departure.
# The ministry has recommended an increase in the liability for both domestic and international travel, with compensations of Rs 1,000-3,000 a kg for loss, delay and damage to bags.
# The government has also proposed that free of charge correction in the name up to three characters only and within 24 hours of booking.
# A flyer should also be allowed a lock-in option for 24 hours (after booking ticket) in which the passenger can cancel or amend the ticket without any charges.
Although the Airlines industry opposed the move of the Government. As per the statements of the airlines “in the current scenario when the entire industry is bearing the brunt of high oil prices, increase in compensation can lead to financial losses of airlines also the current level of penalties for airlines is already high and there is no reason to increase it. So it will result in huge commercial losses”.