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PNS Daily Newscast - September 19, 2018 


Updates on Trump tariffs and his Supreme Court nominee. Also on the Wednesday rundown: New Hampshire in the news in a clean energy report; and doctors address the rise of AFib – a serious and sometimes invisible cardiac issue.

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Heading to the Airport? Know Your Passenger Rights

PHOTO: The turkey is done, but the traveling is not, as folks across Iowa and the country are boarding planes this weekend to get back and forth to gatherings with friends and family. Photo credit: Scott McLeod/Flickr.
PHOTO: The turkey is done, but the traveling is not, as folks across Iowa and the country are boarding planes this weekend to get back and forth to gatherings with friends and family. Photo credit: Scott McLeod/Flickr.
November 28, 2014

DES MOINES, Iowa – This weekend is one of the busiest of the year at airports across the country, and while the thought of delays or lost bags may be stressful, airline passengers can take comfort in knowing they do have some protections under the law.

Abe Scarr with the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) says those boarding planes have a number of rights, although most people don't fly often and may be unaware.

"Whether it's the right to be reimbursed if you're bumped, or if there's something wrong with your baggage – or simply the right to complain, which actually has a lot of power to it, just by complaining to the airline and to the Department of Transportation," he says.

Scarr points out airlines are required to provide information to passengers about how to file complaints, which airlines must respond to within 60 days.

For those involuntarily bumped, Scarr says if the flight is not re-booked within two hours, a passenger is owed 200 percent of the one-way fare, up to $650.

There also are allowances for luggage.

"If your bag is just simply delayed, the airlines are required to reimburse you for reasonable expenses, such as toiletries or a change of clothes,” Scarr explains. “If they lose your bags, they're required to refund any checked baggage fees and reimburse you for the lost items, up to $3,400."

Scarr adds that while tarmac delays were a big problem in the past, rules adopted in recent years now prevent passengers from being parked on planes for hours and hours.

"Basically, if you're stuck on the tarmac over a period of time, the airline is required to give you food and water and medical attention,” he stresses. “And after three hours, they either have to return you to the airport or be in the air."

According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), air travel for this long Thanksgiving holiday weekend will be at its highest level since 2007, with more than 3.5 million people flying.



John Michaelson, Public News Service - IA