Congress is considering limiting what fees airlines can charge for certain things, and it may end up having a negative effect on the passenger experience, taking away certain “perks” that, while they angered customers up front, would be even more of a hassle to travelers if those perks were taken away.
Air traveler rights have been on Congress’ mind lately, and currently up for debate is the ability for airlines to charge fees to change nonrefundable tickets. Currently, most airlines will charge a fee of up to $200 to change the fares, something that many passengers tend to get angry about. Congress is looking to change that, though, by limiting what airlines can charge for adjustments to those tickets.
American Airlines is fighting back in its own way, suggesting it will stop allowing nonrefundable tickets to be changed at all if Congress passes the legislation.
“That non-refundable ticket is of value to us,” American’s CEO Doug Parker told reporters after a meeting, reported by Bloomberg. “We knew that seat was going to be filled. It allowed us to do other things. We sold the rest of the airplane knowing that seat was going to be filled.”
The idea to limit fees comes from a bill sponsored by South Dakota’s Republican Senator John Thune, who heads up the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee. It’s a bipartisan bill but has yet to pass the committee die to a time delay for other issues.
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