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Responding to a flurry of court challenges and petitions
from the industry, the Transportation Department postponed the effective date
of key portions of its new consumer protection rules to Jan. 24.
The postponement affects the rewrite of DOT's full-fare
advertising rule, which was slated to take effect Oct. 24, and a number of
other new rules slated to become effective Aug. 23.
Among the deferred rules are two provisions, cited by the American
Society of Travel Agents as unworkable, dictating how agents must advise
clients and Web shoppers about airline baggage fees and other ancillary
charges, including specific notices on e-ticket confirmations.
Also delayed were several provisions challenged in court by
Allegiant and Spirit, including a rule requiring airlines to offer cash refunds
up to 24 hours after travelers make a reservation.
At the request of the Air Transport Association, the DOT
also deferred a provision that would require the baggage allowances and fees of
the marketing carrier to prevail on all segments of codeshare itineraries, even
if the policies of the operating carrier are more advantageous.
All other portions of the rules will go into effect on Aug.
23, including an extension of the tarmac delay rule to additional U.S. airports
and to foreign airlines as well as an increase in the minimum denied-boarding
compensation for bumped passengers.
Source: Travel Weekly