Frustrated with air travel? The U.S. Department of Transportation recently launched a new Aviation Consumer Protection website to review and respond to consumer complaints, educate travelers on their rights, and make relevant rules and guidance accessible to the public.
From the homepage, users can find information on consumers’ rights by clicking on one of the images related to Flight Delays & Cancellations; Traveling with a Disability; Tarmac Delays; Lost, Delayed, or Damaged Baggage, Discrimination, Refunds, and more. The option to File a Consumer Complaint is prominently displayed on the homepage and linked at the bottom of the various topic pages.
The navigation bar on the left-hand side of the screen includes an expandable menu option where passengers can learn about the DOT’s regulations and guidance on variety of issues. For example, selecting Bumping and Oversales from the Rules, Guidance and Enforcement Orders category provides the user with a compilation of related regulations (e.g. 14 CFR Part 250 - Oversales), notices of proposed rulemaking, letters, powerpoint presentations, and enforcement orders concerning airlines’ violations of the Department’s rules. Links are provided to documents and government websites such as the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations where appropriate.
An Airline Customer Service Dashboard details the amenities or services that ten large U.S. airlines have promised to provide to customers when a cancellation or delay was due to circumstances that were within the airline’s control. The page includes charts that display which airlines have - or have not - made certain commitments when such “controllable cancellations” occur. The page also links to the ten companies’ customer service plans.
Users can also check out air travel tips, news, safety and security information, and more from the left-hand navigation bar.