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Long overdue

Old 7th Dec 2023, 05:20
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Long overdue

THE AIRLINES WILL FIGHT THIS TOOTH AND NAIL
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Bill of rights proposed for Australian airline passengers to improve airline’s performance

A group of senior lawyers have asked the government for an overhaul of passengers rights. See what you’d get if your flight is delayed or cancelled.
Andrew Koubaridis
@akoubaridis
2 min read
December 7, 2023 - 1:59PMNews Corp Australia Network
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Qantas is the least reliable airline in Australia according to monthly on-time-performance data for October. The new data published by the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics showed only 66 per cent of flights arrived within 15-minutes of schedule. This making them worse than even their low fare partner Jetstar. Jetstar managed to land 68 per cent of flights on time. In contrast, regional carrier QantasLink was the most reliable carrier, landing 77 per cent of flights on schedule.Exclusive: Australian airlines would have to prove delays or cancellations were beyond their control or compensate passengers under sweeping changes proposed by senior lawyers.
The Australian Lawyers Association (ALA) has asked the Albanese Government to create new aviation-specific consumer protection laws in the form of a Passenger Bill of Rights.
As well as compensation, it would extend to basic conditions including free food and water, Wi-Fi, and accommodation, as well as a standardised claim process and timescale for airlines to deal with complaints or claims made against them.
In its submission to the federal government’s Aviation White Paper – that sets aviation policies through to 2050 – the ALA said airlines were letting Australian’s down.
Travel lawyer and ALA spokeswoman Victoria Roy said Australia lacked a simple compensation scheme like in the EU or Canada.The Australian Lawyers association wants a passenger bill of rights for Aussies.“The problem is that Australians do have some rights, but they’re very limited, they’re very vague, and they’re very complex. And if consumers know what their rights are, then you have a situation where it’s costly to enforce,” Ms Roy said.
An EU-style scheme would require airlines to pay passengers on the Melbourne to Sydney route $370 if they were late by three hours or the flight was cancelled.
“In our view, it’s time for Australia to have its own passenger bill of rights that includes flight delay and cancellation compensations that we see in other jurisdictions, but also to go beyond that, to also include obligations on airlines to provide timely communication to passengers when there’s a delay or cancellation,” Ms Roy said.
The ALA said the onus should be on the airline to prove a delay or cancellation is not within their control.ALA spokeswoman and travel lawyer Victoria RoyAustralian airlines have been cancelling flights more than the long term average. Picture: NCA NewsWire / David GeraghtyIn October, 3.9 per cent of combined Qantas services were called off while Jetstar and Virgin each pulled 4.1 per cent of its flights.
On time departures were significantly down on the long term average, while the cancellation rate of 3.8 per cent higher than the long term average of 2.2 per cent.
“The statistics clearly show on demand performance is poor.” Ms Roy said.
Sydney Airport Corporation CEO Geoff Culbert told a recent conference there were 184 cancellations on the busy Sydney to Melbourne route in September with almost zero correlation between the cancellations and weather or air traffic control issues.
“So you can read between the lines and see many of these cancellations and delays are operational reasons by airlines,” Ms Roy said.
“We see a flight delay compensation scheme being an incentive for airlines to get those to get those situations right and to have enough staff and standby. The scheme that we’re calling for won’t compensate passengers for every delay, just those that are within an airline’s control,” she said.The ALA proposal would see airlines having to support stranded passengers. Picture: Amanda Ducker.“At the moment, there’s no accountability for airlines.”

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In a separate submission, the The Australian Airports Association called for an inquiry into anti-competitive behaviour in domestic aviation and an independent Airline Ombudsman to improve consumer confidence.
The creation of the White Paper, comes as amid a legal battle between the ACCC and Qantas after the airline was accused of selling tickets after flights were cancelled.
Qantas denies the claims, insisting it doesn’t sell customers tickets to any particular flight, but rather a “bundle of rights”.
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7th Dec 2023, 05:30
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One must understand that the entire purpose of Chairman’s Lounges and the like, are to ensure things like a ‘Passenger Bill of Rights’ in any kind of potent form, never sees the light of day.
Old 7th Dec 2023, 05:30
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One must understand that the entire purpose of Chairman’s Lounges and the like, are to ensure things like a ‘Passenger Bill of Rights’ in any kind of potent form, never sees the light of day.
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Old 7th Dec 2023, 05:54
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Qantas, Virgin and Jetstar especially will roll out the lobbyists and spin doctors to come up with every conceivable reason why this is a terrible idea and will cost not them but their poor customers.
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Old 7th Dec 2023, 11:36
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Originally Posted by ExtraShot
One must understand that the entire purpose of Chairman’s Lounges and the like, are to ensure things like a ‘Passenger Bill of Rights’ in any kind of potent form, never sees the light of day.
This might get some traction if the current performance continues much longer. I’m guessing it’s got as far as it has because bigwigs are starting to get affected and soft corruption only works if the pollies actually get on the flight that they’ve been upgraded on.
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Old 7th Dec 2023, 22:26
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Originally Posted by walesregent
soft corruption only works if the pollies actually get on the flight that they’ve been upgraded on.
That’s actually quite funny.
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Old 8th Dec 2023, 00:16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walesregent
soft corruption only works if the pollies actually get on the flight that they’ve been upgraded on.


That’s actually quite funny.
But quite possibly true though.
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Old 8th Dec 2023, 01:18
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Given Australia's perfect weather, and low traffic densities, there can really only be a handful
of reasons why OTP is so bad.

1) Reducing A/C reliability, take your pick of reasons
2) Unrealistic turn times
3) Low morale/rocketing sickness/people leaving the industry
4) Services that aren’t viable being cancelled or amalgamated
5) Optimistic crew scheduling and overuse of FRMS limits as targets

All of which start at MBA school.
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Old 8th Dec 2023, 01:26
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6) Crew refusing to extend or use their discretion should delays be encountered.

Though I've only been SLF the last several years, in a similar role my shift limit is my shift limit. At the 12 hour mark, the brakes go on and my train stops wherever it happens to be, I don't go another one or two hours to help out my employer, or get to a better changeover spot. For pilots, if that means diverting to make sure you get on blocks within your rostered hours, and inconveniencing all of us behind you, so be it. It'd be a rare day it's specifically the crew's fault there's a delay, so why should you put yourself and your health at risk to cover it? Nope, short staffing on the ground, or delays due to inexperienced baggage handlers is not your fault. Do the best you can within your allocated hours and if you won't make it, so be it.
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Old 8th Dec 2023, 02:12
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Originally Posted by gordonfvckingramsay
Given Australia's perfect weather, and low traffic densities, there can really only be a handful
of reasons why OTP is so bad.

1) Reducing A/C reliability, take your pick of reasons
2) Unrealistic turn times
3) Low morale/rocketing sickness/people leaving the industry
4) Services that aren’t viable being cancelled or amalgamated
5) Optimistic crew scheduling and overuse of FRMS limits as targets

All of which start at MBA school.
Nailed it!!
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Old 8th Dec 2023, 03:33
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All sounds good except:

I've just flown Air Canada and the flight was delayed and arrived in Oz 3.5 hours late.
Canadian legislation states that C$400 should be paid to each passenger, lots of provisos, but you also have to claim.
Sent nice letter about flight and great cabin crew, also mentioned late arrival.
Response said thank you for the compliments and we (AC) will send you C$400 each.
Then received a stern letter, cancelling first and telling us no money.
That letter quoted our ticket number and claimed we travelled on a different date!
No one will reply to our protests, so we now have to write to the Canadian Transport Department; can you imagine how long that will take?
Clearly Air Canada has worked out how to avoid liability - our airlines will obviously follow suit.
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Old 8th Dec 2023, 04:54
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Originally Posted by dragon man
Qantas, Virgin and Jetstar especially will roll out the lobbyists and spin doctors to come up with every conceivable reason why this is a terrible idea and will cost not them but their poor customers.
Originally Posted by Mr Approach
All sounds good except:

I've just flown Air Canada and the flight was delayed and arrived in Oz 3.5 hours late.
Canadian legislation states that C$400 should be paid to each passenger, lots of provisos, but you also have to claim.
Sent nice letter about flight and great cabin crew, also mentioned late arrival.
Response said thank you for the compliments and we (AC) will send you C$400 each.
Then received a stern letter, cancelling first and telling us no money.
That letter quoted our ticket number and claimed we travelled on a different date!
No one will reply to our protests, so we now have to write to the Canadian Transport Department; can you imagine how long that will take?
Clearly Air Canada has worked out how to avoid liability - our airlines will obviously follow suit.
If you still have the boarding pass showing the date why not put it out on social media in Australia that focuses the airline’s attention.
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