The US Department of Transportation recently launched an Air Travelers dashboard aimed at highlighting travelers’ rights during flight disruptions.
Throughout 2022, travelers everywhere have experienced an unprecidented level of flight delays and cancellations. When these disruptions occur, airlines are required to support passengers based on commitments made in their customer service plans, but more and more frequently, passengers are finding those plans difficult to understand and do not guarantee services – such as meals or hotel accommodations when they must wait overnight at an airport – even for flights that are delayed or canceled because of the carrier. To ensure the traveling public has easy access to this information, the U.S. Department of Transportation recently rolled out a new airline customer service dashboard.
The dashboard provides air travelers a one-stop location to obtain information on the services and amenities they should receive from airlines if they experience delays or cancelations that are caused by something within the airline’s control like a mechanical or staffing issue. The dashboard also provides a clear comparison of amenities the airlines have committed to providing, which will assist consumers when deciding which airline to fly. The creation of this new tool is one of the many steps the Department is taking to improve customer service provided to travelers. The Department will hold airlines accountable if they fail to provide the promised services. The Department has also provided direct links to airlines’ customer service plans on its Aviation Consumer Protection website.
Maryland’s Baltimore-Washington International Airport (BWI) is the busiest airport in the Greater Washington-Baltimore Region, serving roughly 27 million passengers a year. Alaska Airlines, Allegiant, American Airlines, Delta, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest, Spirit and United Airlines all have flights in and out of BWI and are covered within the dashboard. Some airlines that are not major national carriers but do fly into BWI have yet to be included by USDOT in their analysis, there is no word yet on their future inclusion. Regardless this new tool will go a long way in helping to inform Marylander’s travel plans as we approach the busy holiday travel season.