Thursday, September 28, 2023
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Buttigieg's new airline dashboard will tell you what you owe as summer travel chaos bleeds into fall

Today’s travelers spend more and more time at the airport.


L Last week, in a letter to airlines CEO, Transportation Minister Pete Buttigieg announced that the Department of Transportation (DOT) will be launching a dashboard to help customers determine What are their responsibilities if a flight is delayed or cancelled. The new tool on the DOT Aviation Consumer Protection website is scheduled to launch on Friday, September 2, just in time for the start of Labor Day weekend.

For travelers, to spend User-centric, transparency-focused tools aren’t fast enough.

According to
FlightAware Track data . More than a third of delays occur in the US, where at least 20% of flights are delayed at 26 major US airports. That’s a remarkable number, even in a hellish summer marked by airport chaos and flight disruptions.

Yesterday’s worst offender was Denver International Airport, with a whopping 44% of flights departing late. Nine other U.S. airports had delay rates as high as 30 percent.

MORE FROM FORBES ‘Rules must have teeth’: Buttigieg says airlines must be responsible for flight chaos Author:Suzanne Rowan Kelleher )

Sunday was a particularly bad day for American Airlines’ on-time flights. JetBlue 41% of flights were delayed; Southwest 40%; For Frontier, 38%; Allegiant 35% delayed. Among traditional airlines, 30% of United flights are delayed, compared with 27% in the United States. According to FlightAware, Delta delays “only” 20% of its flights, which seems heroic.

Monday looked even more so. Even before 8:30AM ET, the departure board had recorded more than 8,000 delays globally and nearly 2,000 in the U.S. If recent history is any indicator, those numbers could triple by the end of the day .

think about it, In the first half of this year, the United States. According to DOT data, airlines cancel 3.2% of domestic flights and delay 24% of domestic flights.

Yet, in the midst of this confusion, many travelers are still unaware of their rights as fliers. DOT’s new dashboard is designed to clearly show consumers what each airline is offering in the event of a delay or cancellation.

In a recent Forbes consultant survey of 2,000 travelers, 61% of respondents experienced flight disruptions this summer.

Buttigieg would like to see a universal minimum compensation threshold in such cases. “The department requires airlines to provide meal vouchers for delays of at least three hours or more and to accommodate passengers who have to wait overnight at the airport due to disruptions within the airline’s control,” Buttigieg wrote to airline chiefs .

MORE FROM FORBES Why 20,000 daily delayed flights won’t disappear soon Author
Suzanne Rowan Kelleher

Faced with ongoing staffing shortages, airlines have been scaling back flight schedules. Between May and June, 11 major U.S. airlines cut July flights by 19,000, according to aviation data firm Cirium. Notably, the company found the shredding to be very uneven. Some airlines, like Allegiant, cut their schedules by about 17%, while others, like JetBlue and Delta, cut their schedules by only 5%.

Looking ahead to the fall and the holidays, tourism entities are already scaling back capacity, indicating that they expect more disruptions to come.

Two notable cases: London Heathrow Airport has extended daily passenger limits until late October. Last week, American Airlines cut 31,000 flights, or about 16%, from its November plan, according to Cirium data. That’s a huge number compared to the 19,000 flights the Texas-based airline has already cut this year.

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