CAB prohibits overbooking, 'no refund, no rebooking' policy

Posted at 05/30/12 6:21 PM

MANILA, Philippines - Local airlines can no longer overbook domestic flights starting June 15, nor can it continue its "no refund, no rebooking" policy on low-cost fares.

This comes as the Civil Aeronautics Board upheld its earlier orders suspending the airlines' option to overbook flights, and its restriction on refunds and rebooking.

The CAB voted to "sustain" its May 4 orders, which were published in a newspaper on Wednesday. The CAB resolutions will take effect in 15 days.

CAB's resolution no. 28 suspended the provision on overbooking until further notice. If airlines do not comply with the CAB order, they face a P5,000 fine multiplied by the number of passengers bumped off or denied boarding.

Airlines typically overbook their flights by 10% in anticipation of passengers who do not show up.

"The board takes cognizance of the prevailing public outcry against delayed and/or cancelled flights, as well as passengers denied boarding, presumably due to overbooking in domestic scheduled flights," the CAB said.

At the same time, the CAB's resolution no. 29 suspended the "no refund, no rebooking" conditions imposed by airlines on certain low-cost fares for domestic flights.

"The period of refundability and rebookability shall be subject to the airline's condition of carriage, but in no case more than one year from the date of the original or first intended flight," the board said.

A rising number of complaints from passengers  about the non-refundability and non-rebookability of low-cost fares, prompted the CAB's review of the airlines' policy.