Arizona’s Brnovich, other AGs want more rights for passengers when flights change

Dec 20, 2022, 8:00 PM
(File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)...
(File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)
(File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)

PHOENIX — Arizona’s Mark Brnovich is part of a bipartisan coalition of attorneys general who want passengers to get better treatment when airlines make unexpected flight changes.

“Even at their cruising altitudes, airlines are still not above the law,” Brnovich said in a press release Tuesday.

“It’s time for them to be held to similar consumer protection standards as other service industries.”

Brnovich is among 34 attorneys general who signed a letter to U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg about proposals to regulate how airlines deal with flight cancellations.

“We are aware of the frustrations experienced by countless consumers whose flights have been canceled or delayed and the inadequate remedies that have been offered to them,” the letter says.

“In fact, our offices have repeatedly brought to the USDOT’s attention complaints from airline passengers impacted by the airlines’ cancellation or significant delay of their flights.”

The following items are among the proposals in the letter:

  • “USDOT should make clear that it will impose significant fines for cancellations and extended delays that are not weather-related or otherwise unavoidable.”
  • “USDOT should require airlines to provide partial refunds to passengers for any cancellation that results in a rescheduled flight which the passenger accepts but that is later, longer, or otherwise less valuable than the originally purchased flight.”
  • “USDOT should prohibit airlines from canceling flights while upselling consumers more expensive alternative flights to the same destinations.”
  • “USDOT should require that credits and vouchers for future travel that are provided by airlines in the event of cancellation can be used easily without inappropriate limitations.”

The attorneys general from the following jurisdictions joined Brnovich in signing the letter:

Colorado, Connecticut, Iowa, New York, Alaska, California, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming.

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Arizona’s Brnovich, other AGs want more rights for passengers when flights change