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This vacation journey season, listed below are 3 methods Transportation has your again

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As our economic system and our households proceed to recuperate from the shockwaves of a grueling pandemic, increasingly more People have returned to touring this yr. That is excellent news: journey is nice for our economic system in addition to our spirits.

However that return hasn’t been with out challenges. Airways struggled to maintain up with demand over the summer time, and cancellations and delays arose. And whereas their on-time efficiency has improved significantly prior to now six months, there’s nonetheless an extended method to go.

With Thanksgiving and Christmas arising quickly, we on the Division of Transportation have been centered on supporting vacationers—whether or not they’re behind the wheel, boarding a prepare, or headed to the airport. And should you’re one of many almost half of American vacationers planning to fly this vacation season, there are some things it is best to know.

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You’ve rights, and we’re implementing them

First and most significantly, in case your flight will get canceled for any purpose, you’re entitled to a full money refund. Airways might give you credit or 1000’s as an alternative, however should you ask, they’re required by legislation to refund not solely your ticket, but additionally baggage charges and associated costs.

In case your airline refuses or fails to refund you, tell us by our web site. To this point, we have helped passengers recuperate tons of of tens of millions of {dollars} in required refunds, and we are going to do the whole lot we will to get you the cash you are owed.

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We’re selling transparency, so you may make knowledgeable selections

Relating to customer support, the completely different insurance policies of various airways usually are not at all times apparent, which may make it tougher to match store once you’re shopping for an airline ticket. That is why we lately created an Airline Buyer Service Dashboard, which helps you to simply examine the providers completely different airways supply once they trigger a cancellation or delay.

Earlier than that webpage went stay, I advised the airways that it was coming and inspired them to step up their recreation—and lots of of them did. Earlier than we printed the dashboard, not one of the ten largest US airways assured meals and motels, and just one assured free rebooking. At this time, 9 out of ten supply motels and meals, and all of them promise free rebooking once they trigger a delay or cancellation. Airways are required to ship on these guarantees, and we plan to ensure they do—so should you run into an issue with an airline conserving its phrase, tell us.

We’re elevating the bar for airways

All these modifications have helped make flying simpler. However we’re not simply implementing the prevailing guidelines, we’re additionally engaged on new ones that may strengthen protections for vacationers.

We have proposed a rule that may strengthen protections for purchasers who cancel flights due to a severe communicable illness like COVID-19, and would require airways to proactively inform passengers of their proper to a refund—since you should not must know the magic phrases to get what you are owed.

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We have launched one other proposal that may require that hidden charges—for baggage, for vacationers to sit down with relations, and extra—be disclosed up entrance, so you’ll find the perfect deal once you’re reserving tickets. We have additionally proposed a rule that may require refunds when prospects pay for one thing they do not get—resembling when the in-flight Wi-Fi does not work.

While you’re heading dwelling for Thanksgiving, packing Christmas presents to convey to relations, or gearing up for a New Yr break, issues about what to anticipate in case your flight will get canceled or delayed ought to be the very last thing in your thoughts.

Transportation is what lets us spend the vacations with the folks we love most—and vacation journey ought to be one thing to sit up for. That is why, once you fly this vacation season, we’ll have your again.

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