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Transport Sec. Abaya promises air passenger 'Bill of Rights' out before Christmas

InterAksyon.com means BUSINESS

MANILA - Air passengers who feel they got a raw deal may have something to look forward to before Christmas, as the Department of Transportation and Communications on Thursday said the long-promised "Bill of Rights" may be issued before the holiday season.

The fourth quarter is a peak season for air travel, as overseas Filipino workers and balikbayans fly back to the Philippines to spend time with their families and loved ones.

"We tried to push it out before undas, but was too short a time and it may cause confusion. What we want is to have [the order] signed and implemented before Christmas to benefit more people," Transport Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya told reporters at the sidelines of a forum organized by the British Embassy.

The proposed Bill of Rights is contained in Administrative Order No. 1, which the DOTC, the Department of Trade and Industry and the Civil Aeronautics Board would jointly issue.

The rules cover denial of boarding, flight delay, flight cancellation, off-loading of baggage, overbooking, advertisement of promotional and regular fares, re-fundability and re-bookability of fares, death and bodily injury, and express lane for persons with disabilities and senior citizens.

The DOTC promises the Bill of Rights would be a comprehensive solution to customer complaints.

Data from CAB showed that consumers filed 81 complaints last year, higher than the 77 in 2010. In the first quarter of this year alone, CAB received 21 complaints.

Of the total number of complaints, 45 percent pertained to demands for a refund; 14 percent, unfair practices/negligence of personnel; 10 percent, cancelled flights; 7 percent, delayed flights, denied boarding or lost luggage; and 3 percent, misleading advertisement.

 

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