New Delhi: Releasing the first draft of the passengers’ charter the Ministry of Aviation has given a big relief to the air passengers on cancellation charges. The Ministry of Aviation also spelled out compensation on missing connecting flight and plans to introduce wifi services in flight.
The passengers’ charter draft would likely be final within a period of one month as told to the media by Aviation secretary R N Choubey.
The Ministry of Aviation has proposed a lock-in period of 24 hours from cancellation charges for flight tickets. Jayant Sinha, Minister of State for Aviation said, “No cancellation charges will be levied if the tickets are cancelled within 24 hours of booking, provided the ticket is booked 96 hours before flight departure.”
The government also said in the draft on passenger charters that in no condition the cancellation fee can’t be more than the base fare.
B.S. Bhullar, DG of Directorate General of Civil Aviation said, “Earlier, travel agents or OTAs cancellation fee used to be more than the base fare. Under the new passenger charter, it cannot be more than the base even after including cancellation fee charged by agents.”
Spelling out the compensation on missing the connecting flight the draft read – If a passenger misses a connecting flight due to over three-hour delay, the compensation would be Rs. 5,000. For delays of 4-12 hours and more than 12 hours, it would be Rs. 10,000 and Rs. 20,000 respectively.
On flight cancellation it has been stated that if the passenger is informed about cancellation of flight less than two weeks before and up to 24 hours of the scheduled departure time, the airline mist offer alternate flight allowing the passenger to depart within two hours of the booked scheduled departure time or refund the ticket, as acceptable to the passenger.
On flight delays the draft spelled out that the airline has to offer an option of full refund of ticket if flight delay is communicated more than 24 hours prior to original scheduled time and the flight is delayed for more than four hours.
Very soon the passengers would be able to enjoy the wifi services. Minister of State, Jayant Sinha said that passengers can enjoy wifi connectivity in flights within two months of airlines obtaining licences for the same. The wifi services will be from the moment a plane takes off and personal electronic devices have to be put on flight mode and also the mobile services can be allowed only when an aircraft is over an altitude of 3,000 meters.
Talking about wifi on planes, Aviation Secretary, R. N. Choubey said that the telecom ministry would decide on licensing condition with a week’s time and passengers should be able to enjoy wifi on board within a period of two months.
The draft also read that revamped AirSewa mobile and web application is on the cards to make flight booking and cancellation easier for passengers. It will also enable users to login to AirSewa using their social media credentials in a safe manner.