Protecting Your Plans When Purchasing Travel

There's good news for travelers who fear their money may take flight if​ the​ airline they've booked tickets on​ declares bankruptcy. There are practical steps travelers can take to​ protect their travel plans and their money.

Legally,​ struggling airlines may declare bankruptcy while continuing flight operations. Here are a​ few tips for travelers to​ consider when purchasing travel:

• Use a​ credit card. When selecting a​ supplier that might be be in​ financial trouble,​ consumers should pay by credit card. Under the​ Fair Credit Billing Act,​ credit card customers have the​ right to​ refuse to​ pay for charges for services not rendered. Details of​ the​ Fair Credit Billing Act can be found at​ the​ Federal Trade Commission's Web site.

• Consider insurance. Some travel insurance policies may include supplier default protection. However,​ vendors that have declared bankruptcy protection are generally excluded.

• Remember Section 145. According to​ the​ experts at​ the​ American Society of​ Travel Agents (ASTA),​ consumers who have purchased a​ ticket on​ an​ airline that ceases operations may be entitled to​ standby travel on​ other airlines.

Section 145 of​ the​ Aviation and Transportation Security Act provides that airline passengers holding tickets (paper or​ electronic) from a​ bankrupt carrier for a​ particular route are entitled,​ at​ minimum,​ to​ transportation on​ a​ space-available basis on​ any airline currently serving that route provided the​ passenger makes alternate arrangements within 60 days after an​ airline has suspended operations.

Additionally,​ the​ maximum fee that an​ airline can charge for providing standby transportation should not exceed $50 each way. Unless extended,​ Section 145 is​ valid through November 30,​ 2018.

• File a​ claim. if​ an​ airline defaults and a​ consumer is​ unable to​ take advantage of​ the​ Fair Credit Billing Act or​ Section 145,​ he should file a​ claim with the​ bankruptcy court. the​ bankruptcy court usually provides filing instructions,​ including claim forms,​ within months after a​ bankruptcy is​ filed.

ASTA is​ the​ world's largest association of​ travel professionals.
Protecting Your Plans When Purchasing Travel Protecting Your Plans When Purchasing Travel Reviewed by Henda Yesti on August 12, 2018 Rating: 5

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