Airlines Are Bumping Far Fewer People From Flights

Airlines get the message Passengers bumped from flights drops to lowest level in decades

Airlines get the message Passengers bumped from flights drops to lowest level in decades

Airlines reported mishandling 2.54 bags for every 1,000 passengers during the first six months of the year, which was lower than 2.65 for the same period a year earlier.

That incident, in which a passenger was injured after being forcibly dragged off of a plane by police, drew attention to the practice of denying seats to passengers who had purchased tickets. That's the lowest rate ever recorded, according to 23 years of historical Transportation department data. That passenger bump rate was down 29 percent compared to the same time a year ago.

Kaplan said the changes in policies are far better for passengers and airlines. American Airlines, meanwhile, issued a pledge that once a passenger boards a plane, that person will not be removed to free up a seat for someone else.

On April 9, a Vietnamese-American doctor was violently removed from his seat on an overbooked United Airlines flight by aviation policemen at Chicago O'Hare International Airport, to give seats to crew members, which sparked wide-spread criticism on social media.

Since then, United and other large USA airlines have introduced new measures to reduce overbooking, and raised the maximum amount that passengers can be offered to give up a seat.

Both marked the lowest rates seen since 1995. "If the Department of Transportation won't hold the airlines to account for these practices, then Congress needs to step in and fix the problem".

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Tarmac delays: In June, airlines reported six tarmac delays of more than three hours on domestic flights, compared to 27 delays in May.

The monthly report also covered a mixed record for mishandled bags, and a worse record for punctuality and cancellations in June.

The department has launched an airline passenger website to make it easy for travelers to understand their rights. The government counts a flight on time if it arrives within 14 minutes of schedule. In June, airlines also reported two tarmac delays of more than four hours on global flights compared to no such tarmac delays in May.

The carriers canceled 1.1 percent of their scheduled domestic flights this June, up from the 1 percent cancellation rate in June 2016 and the 0.8 percent rate in May.

The department received 1,605 complaints about airline service during June, which represented a 9.8% decline from May, but 7.7% more than June 2016. Alaska Airlines had the lowest rate of complaints. From January to June, the DOT received 9,026 consumer complaints, up nearly 8 percent from the total of 8,375 received during the first six months of 2016.

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