Published on Friday, December 8, 2017

DOT scraps airline fee transparency proposal

The US Department of Transportation has ditched a proposal to require airlines to display full transparency on airline fare information.

First proposed during the Obama administration, it would have required airlines to disclose all relevant fees, including checked bag fees, at the start of a ticket purchase, rather than just before customers pay online.

Airlines have long complained of 'significant costs' if required to do this.

Consumer groups and Democrat lawmakers decried the decision.

"Having the DOT step back from developing rules to allow consumers to know the full price of travel and to be able to comparison shop is an affront to America," Travelers United, a passenger advocacy group, said in a statement.

It is 'a dereliction of duty' by the DOT, said Traveleres United chairman Charles Leocha.

"The administration is turning its back on airline passengers just before families are about to head home for the holidays," said Sen. Bill Nelson.

The DOT ruling was also blasted by the Consumers Union, which says shoppers don't have the basic ability to compare costs between airlines.

Trade group Airlines for America on the other hand praised the DOT for 'recognizing that airlines, like all other businesses, need the freedom to determine which third-parties they do business with and how best to market, display and sell their products.'

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