Progressives Want To Make Airlines Give You A Refund For Delays And Cancellations

by | Jun 29, 2022 | Politics

WASHINGTON – Leading progressives are calling on President Joe Biden’s administration to take aggressive action to reduce flight disruptions at airports, including requiring airlines to refund passengers for flights that have been delayed or canceled.“Taxpayers bailed out the airline industry during their time of need. Now, it is the responsibility of the airline industry and the Department of Transportation to ensure, to the maximum extent possible, that the flying public and crew members are able to get to their destinations on time and without delay,” Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) wrote in a letter addressed to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Wednesday. AdvertisementSanders called on the Department of Transportation to require airlines to refund passengers for flights delayed over an hour. He also said the department should impose additional fines on airlines for flights delayed more than two hours and for scheduling flights that they are unable to properly staff. The department defended its performance, and Buttigieg said earlier this week that the administration is considering what actions it could take to crack down on canceled flights. First, though, the department wants to see whether steps promised by airline executives have an impact on flights over the July Fourth weekend.“That is happening to a lot of people, and that is exactly why we are paying close attention here to what can be done and how to make sure that the airlines are delivering,” Buttigieg told the Associated Press a few days after he met with airline executives. Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, who is also the Democratic nominee for Senate in the state, called on the Department of Transportation to fine airlines up to $27,500 per passenger for “every flight they cancel that they knew they didn’t have the staff to fly.”Advertisement“To put it mildly: this is ridiculous,” Fetterman said in a statement. “People are missing weddings, funerals, family reunions, and other precious moments because airlines are failing consumers. … This is happening weekend after weekend. And with the Fourth of July around the corner, it’s only going to get worse.”Flight delays and cancellations have surged in recent months as air travel has rebounded close to pre-pandemic levels. More than 1,500 flights were cancel …

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