19 Dec Travel Technology Association Files Comments with U.S. Department of Transportation on Airline Ticket Refunds and Consumer Protections
Travel Technology Association Advocates for Airlines and Ticket Agents to Issue Refunds as Required[Arlington, VA] [December 19, 2022] – The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech), the voice of the travel technology industry and a consistent advocate for public policy that supports a competitive and transparent marketplace, filed comments today in response to the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on “Airline Ticket Refunds and Consumer Protections,” – Docket No. DOT-OST-2022-0089.
“On behalf of consumers and our member companies that serve them, the Travel Technology Association is proud to stand with the U.S. Department of Transportation in assuring once and for all that airline travelers are made whole when their flights are canceled,” said Travel Tech President and CEO Laura Chadwick. “You get what you pay for, and when you don’t, you should get your money back.”
“We welcome the Department’s decision to define what constitutes a ‘canceled flight’ and ‘significant change to flight itinerary.’ These definitions will bring much-needed uniformity and clarity to what have been fraught and stressful experiences for travelers facing weather or airline staffing issues,” Chadwick continued. “Great customer service, whether before, during, or after a trip, is key to the value Travel Tech members offer. These definitions will help online travel agents better support their customers navigating frustrating flight cancellations and the labyrinth of airline customer service systems.”
In its comments, the Travel Technology Association explains that ticket agents are already bound to issue refunds “promptly” after airlines provide the authorization and funds to do so. In its draft rule, the Department proposes that customers receive refunds within seven days. However, it takes up to eleven days to secure refunds from airlines’ payment and refund systems.
“To require refunds before the funds are returned by the airline – as the proposed rule currently demands – would impose an undue financial burden and risk on ticket agents. We encourage the Department to revise this part of its proposal to reflect that airlines’ payment and refund systems are beyond the control of ticket agents.”
About Travel Tech
The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) is the voice of the travel technology industry, advocating for public policy that promotes transparency and competition in the marketplace to encourage innovation and preserve consumer choice. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including global distribution systems, online travel agencies and metasearch companies, travel management companies, and short-term rental platforms.
To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Dan Rene of kglobal at 202-329-8357 or firstname.lastname@example.org.