Published on : Tuesday, March 7, 2017
The rule was proposed during the presidency of Barack Obama as part of US Department of Transportation (DOT) plans to “enhance protections for air travellers and promote competition in the airline industry” and ensures “that passengers are treated fairly by the airline industry”.
According to a DOT statement, the suspension of the comment period from the public will allow the president’s appointees the opportunity to review and consider this action – which earlier was other open for public comment until March 20.
Travel booking websites expressed disappointment at the move. Steve Shur, the president of the Travel Technology Association, said that the airlines are inhibiting transparency at the expense of consumers. He continued saying that the four carriers currently control over 80 per cent of domestic seat capacity. The DOT needs to work to ensure a competitive air travel marketplace, where airlines compete on price, service, ancillaries and more. Consumers deserve transparency in fare and schedule information and ancillary fees.
The latest measure follows one of the first executive orders by President Trump since his election issued in January to reduce regulation and control regulatory costs. It says that unless prohibited by law, whenever an executive department or agency (agency) publicly proposes for notice and comment or otherwise promulgates a new regulation, it shall identify at least two existing regulations to be repealed.