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Air Passenger Bill of Rights hurdles Philippine Congress

The House of Representative committee on transportation unanimously approved a bill providing for relief and compensation for airline passengers whose flights have been delayed or cancelled, GMA online news reported Tuesday morning.

“Under the substitute bill, every passenger whose flight has been cancelled due to causes attributable to the air carrier shall be entitled to a reimbursement of the full cost of the ticket at the price at which it was bought, and for the part or parts of the journey not made or parts of the journey made if the flight is no longer serving any purpose in relation to the passenger’s original travel plan.”, the report added.

Furthermore, the reimbursement shall be made within five days either by cash, electronic bank transfer, bank orders or bank cheques. Passengers with delayed flight shall also have the right to re-book the ticket without any additional charge, and be endorsed to another air carrier without paying any fare difference.

“We simply could not ignore the mounting complaints of our airline passengers. Otherwise, we, in Congress, would be called deaf to their clamor”, said Magdalo Partylist Rep. Francisco Ashley Acedillo, a proponent of the said measure.

Acedillo added that the urgency to pass the bill was driven by airline passengers’ growing complaints against carriers.

On the other hand, airline representatives and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) present at the committee hearing have expressed their reservations on the measure.

To become a law, the measure needs to be approved by both House of Representatives and the Senate. It will then be transmitted to the president for signature.

Source: gmanetwork.com