Cancelling a flight or denying boarding to a passenger will cost heavily to domestic airlines. The new guidelines set by the aviation regulator DGCA now provides for massive compensation to the passengers in such cases. As per the revised compensation norms, which will come into effect from August 1, an airline will have to pay up to Rs 10,000 to a flier in the case of cancellation or delay of a flight beyond two hours. The compensation for not allowing a passenger to board the flight will be as high as Rs 20,000. As of now airlines offer a meagre amount of up to Rs 4,000 for both, denied boarding and cancellation of a flight. The revised compensation has been arrived at after extensive consultations with all stakeholders, including the airlines.
A Deccan Herald reports states that Fliers body, Air Passengers Association of India (APAI) Founder and President D Sudhakara Reddy said that the new rules leave certain grey areas that need to be addressed. Airlines shall pay a compensation of Rs 5,000 or booked one-way basic fare plus fuel charge, whichever is less for cancelled or delayed flights having a block time of up to one hour in addition to refund of the ticket, in case a flier has not been informed by the carrier as per the DGCA norms.
In the case of an airline cancelling or delaying its flight over one hour up to two hours, the compensation amount will be Rs 7,500 or booked one-way basic fare plus fuel charge, whichever is less, besides the refund amount. An amount of Rs 10,000 or booked one-way basic fare plus airline fuel charge, whichever is less, will be compensated for flights with a block time of more than two hours, according to the new compensation norms.
Block hours refer to the period when an aircraft pushes back from its departure gate till the moment it reaches the arrival gate. These hours are used to calculate an airline’s on-time performance (OTP), besides determining the compensation in the eventuality of a flight getting cancelled or delayed.
In case of denied boarding, the airline will have to pay an amount equal to 200 percent of the booked one-way basic fare plus the airline fuel charge, subject to maximum of Rs 20,000 in case the airline arranges an alternate flight that is scheduled to depart within 24 hours of the booked scheduled departure.