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  • Writer's pictureSiobhan Reeser

Buckle Up for Bumpy Skies: What This Surge in Air Travel Complaints Means for You

Let's face it, travel isn't always smooth sailing. And according to a recent report, air travel in 2023 wasn't exactly a joyride for many passengers. The U.S. Department of Transportation received a whopping 97,000 complaints – the highest number since the pandemic refund chaos of 2020.

travelers waiting at baggage claim in an airport

So, what does this mean for you, the traveler?

While cancellations seem to be down, delays are still a major pain point, affecting roughly 1 in 5 flights. This can wreak havoc on your itinerary, leaving you stranded at airports and scrambling to rebook connections. The report also highlights an increase in complaints about disability access and discrimination, issues that can significantly impact a passenger's experience.

But here's the silver lining: 

This surge in complaints is actually a good thing! It shows that travelers are becoming more aware of their rights and empowered to hold airlines accountable for shortcomings. The Department of Transportation is also taking action, helping passengers like those affected by Southwest's December meltdown secure refunds.

Here are some key takeaways for you as a traveler:

Familiarize yourself with Department of Transportation regulations regarding cancellations, delays, lost luggage, and disability accommodations. You can find this information on their website

If you encounter an issue during your travels, file a complaint with the airline and the Department of Transportation. This helps hold airlines accountable and creates a record of the problem. You can file a complaint with the DOT here:

A good travel advisor can be your advocate, navigating the complexities of air travel and fighting for your rights if problems arise.

This rise in air travel complaints may not be ideal news for frequent flyers, 

but it signifies a positive shift. By empowering travelers and holding airlines accountable, we can work towards a smoother, more enjoyable air travel experience for everyone.

Now, let's get you on that dream vacation without the stress! Contact me today to discuss your travel plans and how I can help ensure a seamless and unforgettable journey.


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