In light of the United Airlines incident yesterday, you should get up to speed on what your rights are when it comes to overbooking.
In a nutshell, we don’t have many. Thanks to the tiny print that most of us don't read we can tell you this:
- Airlines do have the power to decide who leaves a plane if volunteers do not comes forward.
- Those with disabilities, unaccompanied minors under 18, and or unaccompanied kids between ages five and fifteen using the unaccompanied minors service are “protected.”
- You get compensation if you are booted off. The Department of Transportation does have clear guidance about compensation due to fliers "involuntarily denied boarding," and that can pay off in the case of a significant inconvenience. For example, an involuntarily bumped traveler who arrives to his final destination more than four hours late is entitled to an amount worth 400% of his one-way fare (capped at a maximum of $1,350).
Other than that, flyers have no rights. Don’t be surprised if the rules change now, though. Always read the small print before flying.
Source: USA Today