Air passenger bill of rights to cover int'l airlines

Posted at 12/04/12 10:47 AM

MANILA, Philippines - International airlines flying to and from the Philippines, as well as local airlines that fly to international destinations, will also be covered by the Air Passenger Bill of Rights being finalized by the government.   

This comes as the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) held another public hearing on Monday. 

Based on the latest version, the proposed DOTC-DTI Joint Administrative Order (JAO) now covers international airlines which fly to and from the Philippines and local airlines which fly to international destinations. The original proposal had initially covered only local airlines plying domestic routes.  

Transportation Undersecretary Jose Perpetuo Lotilla said they are working to finalize the Air Passenger Bill of Rights in time for the Christmas season, one of the busiest for airlines. 

The Air Passenger Bill of Rights is being crafted in response to all the complaints that the DOTC has received regarding overbooking and flight delays in the past few months.

The latest draft contains the following provisions: 

  • The bidding process to be conducted by airline companies to identify air passenger volunteers who agree to defer their flight in case of excessive passengers as a result of overbooking.
  • The right to be processed for check-in within the check-in deadline and the provision of a designated check-in area for queuing where passengers who are not yet checked-in shall not be considered late or no-show.
  • The right to be provided with compensation and amenities in case of cancellation or delay of flights, including refreshments or meals, hotel accommodation, transportation, communication, etc.

Under the draft, passengers will be entitled to the following:

  • Right to full, fair and clear disclosure of the service offered and all the terms and conditions of the Contract of Carriage
  • Right to clear and non-misleading advertisements and important reminders regarding fares
  • Right against misleading and fraudulent sales promotion practices
  • Right to transportation and baggage conveyance
  • Right to sufficient processing time
  • Right to compensation for delayed, lost and damaged baggage
  • Right to compensation in case of death or bodily injury of a passenger
  • Right to immediate payment of compensation.

The draft order also requires airlines to assign customer service representatives who can address common problems, such as provision of meals and hotel rooms for stranded passengers, settling denied boarding compensation, assist in luggage resolution and settling other routine claims or complaints, on the spot.  

Under the draft, the CAB will also set up Complaints and Assistance Desks in all airports, with staff to assist passengers who have complaints against airlines. The CAB will also assist in the filing and prosecution of the complaints of passengers whose rights have been violated and who wish to go after the concerned air carriers. 

The DOTC and DTI urged stakeholders to submit additional comments and suggestions not later than 12 noon December 15.