The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation has notified Draft Passenger Charter defining rights for air passengers. It aims to improve hassle-free air travel experience of air passengers in the country.
Salient Features of draft
Passenger can cancel air ticket within 24 hours of booking it and if provided travel is to take place after 96 hours, then passenger will be able to cancel ticket without any charge. The cancellation charges will be not more than sum of basic fare and fuel surcharge.
Passenger must be informed about flight cancellation between two weeks and 24 hours before flight. The airline must either offer alternative flight that departs within two hours of scheduled departure of flight booked originally or refund ticket cost.
If airline doesn’t inform passengers about cancelled flight up to 24 hours ahead, it will have to refund the full ticket value, with compensation. Similarly, for delays communicated more than 24 hours before scheduled departure, airline must offer option of full refund of ticket cost if the delay is for more than four hours.
If delay results in flight departing next day, then airline will have to offer free hotel stay. These norms will be applicable only if delay is due to fault of airline, and not caused by bad weather. If a delay results in a passenger missing a connecting flight, then airline will have to pay Rs.5,000 to Rs.20,000.
In case of lost baggage, the minimum compensation proposed is Rs.3,000 per kg. If baggage is delayed or damaged, airline is liable to pay Rs. 1,000 per kg. If passenger doesn’t receive due compensation, grievances can be filed on Ministry of Civil Aviation’s AirSewa app or at Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) portal.
Both domestic and international airlines operating in India are now allowed to offer internet and mobile services on-board its aircraft to passengers in Indian airspace. However, airlines, will require licence from aviation authorities for providing these services.