Heralds Another Major Victory for Consumers: Fairness and Clarity in Fares & Reservations

Jan 18, 2012, 13:55 ET from

NAPA, Calif., Jan. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- today endorsed the Department of Transportation's pending implementation of further airline passenger protections, a product of many months of advocacy and collaboration by with the Department.  The new rules, scheduled to go into effect on January 24 and January 26, will enhance the air travel experience by making ticket prices more accurate and the pricing process more transparent.  The new rules will prohibit post purchase price increases, allowing consumers to hold reservations for 24 hours without payment or penalty for cancellation, and requiring passenger notification of flight status changes within 30 minutes.

Kate Hanni, founder and Executive Director of, said that "For years, airline passengers have been confused by smoke and mirrors pricing practices of the airlines which have masked the true cost of fares. While DOT has delayed implementation of this one provision until January 26, we will soon be able to look at an advertised fare and know that it includes all taxes and fees.  For the first time, apples to apples comparisons will be easier.  Also, we can now purchase tickets without concern that carriers, tour operators, or other sellers might increase the price after our purchase."

Hanni also noted that "the ability to hold reservations for 24 hours without payment and cancel without penalty will be a boon for business travelers. This new provision will provide flexibility that's long been needed-given the difficult economic times we are facing, more clarity and fairness on pricing should bolster consumer confidence in airline tickets."

Finally, Ms. Hanni said that "One of the most common complaints we hear through our free, 24/7 hotline regarding flight delays boils down to 'we can't find out what's going on.'  The new rule mandating updates every 30 minutes will have a very positive impact, reducing a major stress factor in air travel.  The rule's insistence that airlines notify passengers who subscribe to their flight notification services by all available means will give us meaningful, timely information." is the largest non-profit consumer organization in the United States representing airline passengers with 50,000 members and a toll free hotline, 1-877-359-3776.