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In addition to disclosure, there needs to be a requirement that whatever fees were in effect the day the ticket was purchased, are the fees the passenger actually pays. Since tickets can be purchased well in advance, it is quite possible for fees to change between the time the ticket is purchased and the actual date of travel. Why should the consumer have to pay something other than what was in effect on the date of purchase? Doesn’t that purchase imply a contract of some kind?
As for ticket agents, as a travel agent, I have no problem with requiring ticket agents to disclose fees as well, but only if there is an automated way for us to get that information from the airlines. Should I be expected to have to go verify with an airline website each and every time I sell a ticket to ensure… more »
Just what would the technical standards be?
The standards listed in the proposal are implemented by very few commercial websites.
The best compromise is simply to require the airlines to provide the same pricing by telephone or TTY as is available on the web, for those with disabilities. This will be a whole lot cheaper to implement and avoid a whole lot of unnecessary rework for websites.
Instead of revamping all the kiosks, why not require a priority lane for disabled people to get personal assisted service instead? The same goal is achieved at at very much reduced cost.
I fail to see why airlines and airports should have to pay these added costs instead of just having priority lines for the disabled to be serviced by humans. The latter has got to be cheaper and less of a technical challenge. Do the disabled really want to use kiosks instead of getting personal service? Most able-bodied people would rather have the personal service and hate the kiosks.
Thank you for comment. In particular your concern over the actual mechanism to ensure a free flow of information between passengers, airlines, and travel agents. Do you have any suggestions to address this concern or any other concerns/suggestions regarding the proposed rule, in particular bundling charges?
Thanks for your comment mencik. DOT is currently proposing that websites be required to meet WCAG 2.0 standards at the AA conformance level. You can read about the WCAG 2.0 standards. Do you think that AA is too high and should be downgraded to A or perhaps level A with some requirements from level AA but not all?
Do you have any statistics or reports that you could post a link to that show how few websites use the proposed standards? Any information like this would be highly useful for the Agency.
mencik, you’ve made several comments proposing personal service instead of DOT’s proposed changes. Currently airlines and airports (CFR Part 382) are required to “provide equivalent service to passengers with disabilities when automated airport kiosks are inaccessible.” In the SNPRM, DOT has noted that, “Many passengers with disabilities consider these solutions inadequate because they do not allow for independent access and call attention to a passenger’s disability.” Do you feel the current regulations are adequate? If not, what changes would you suggest?
Why, just make the kiosks more accessible. There are laws out there in place for this. I know we had them passed into law. If they need to revamp them so be it, we want independence and not special treatment, the same with the websites, more and more websites are not accessible. It would save me a lot of time and aggrevation if I could book my clients some place without have to wait on the phone for a minimum of 30 minutes for a rep to get on the phone and book something for me, instead of me doing it myself.
Segregating people with disabilities into a separate line is a stigmatizing. People with disabilities are normal people who do not require special treatment, just equal treatment. That means equally accessible benefits like kiosks and websites.
mencik, could you say more about why you believe that most able-bodied people would rather have the personal service and hate the kiosks? DOT recognizes benefits to travelers with disabilities that can’t easily be given a dollar value, such as increased independence and increased privacy. You can read more about these benefits in the Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA).
This is plain and simple government overreach and interference! The benefit will never exceed costs and will drive many good companies from the web! NO new stupid rules! The economy is weak enough as is! Kill this project!