Friday, 28 November 2003

Airlines complain about government-imposed "security" costs

At the International Air Transportation Association's annual aviation security conference earlier this month in Athens, Greece (the location a nod to the anticipated security issues associated with the summer 2004 Olympic Games in Athens), IATA's Director General and CEO Giovanni Bisignani devoted his keynote address to a demand for governments, not airlines or air travellers, to bear the cost of government-imposed "security" measures.

Some of Bisignani's and IATA's logic is suspect. "Aviation cannot be discriminated against when the state provides security free of charge for other modes of transport," he claimed. But the government doesn't provide free security for other modes of transport: railroads, for example, have extensive private security forces to protect their rights of way, as do other private landowners. And his argument that, "The cost of aviation security must be borne by governments through general revenue and not from special taxes and user fees," amounts to a demand that the vast majority of the world's people who can't afford to fly should subsidize, with their general taxes, the small minority of globally wealthy members of the jet set. That may be the nmost regressive tax proposal I've ever heard.

But IATA's call "for a decision ... to oblige governments to assume responsibility for and funding of security measures" is a portent of the likely force of opposition to proposals to impose the cost the of additional "security" measures, such as CAPPS-II , on the aviation industry.

Even before CAPPS-II, according to Bisignani, "These measures have carried a high price tag, with costs for extra security measures imposed on the industry reaching 5 billion dollars last year."

CAPPS-II alone could cost airlines hundreds of millions of dollars, and the industry as a whole (including travel agencies, CRS's, and tour operators) a billion dollars or more. With the attitudes Bisignani describes, that's not an expense the industry will absorb without a fight (even if they could afford to do so).

Bisignani also noted that, "Only globally harmonized systems and standards can facilitate the smooth flow of passengers through security and border control formalities." But with CAPPS-II plans not yet having even been presented to industry standards bodies like the IATA Reservations Committee Working Group (RESCOM) responsible for the ATA/IATA AIRIMP protocol for transmitteing reservation data between systems, that doesn't seem likely to happen. That lack of coordination or consultation with industry will likely contribute to both higher costs and stronger industry opposition to schemes like CAPPS-II that depend on cooperation with, and implementation by, the air transport industry.

Link | Posted by Edward on Friday, 28 November 2003, 08:05 ( 8:05 AM) | TrackBack (0)
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After spending almost $10,000 on plane tickets to Austalia for our family vacation, Quantas refused to give a single frequent flier mile to our American Airline accounts (they are one-world alliance partners).

However, after the travel is completed, Quantas instructs American Airlines, that the flights does not "qualify for frequent flier milage". No such stipulations were made when we booked the tickets, after confirmation, nor is it printed on our intiniary, tickets, boarding passes,emailed confirmations or receipts.

Only after travel is completed and paid for do they refuse credits. Quantas, also does not respond to emails nor direct contacts.

DETAILS:
We bought the tickets (5 of them) on Qantas web site (not American Airlines) and paid Qantas. The ariline never told us that miles was not awarded during the search, booking process nor the payment process. When we added our frequent flier miles numbers nothing was told, when the flight was rebooked by the airline, nor when we flew, they never provided any information in any confirmation, ticket, boarding pass or receipt.

It was only after the flight was completed that they refused any credits.. We paid almost $1,800 per ticket and was basically defrauded. Here is what Qantas sent us as confirmation when we booked on-line at their web site (see if you can find any reference to no ff miles beside the 'N' class which they later told us meant we got nothing)..

INITINARY 12JUN IAD LAX
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
QANTAS ITINERARY ABN 16 009 661 901
QANTAS AIRWAYS CONTACT CENTRE USA 14JANUARY07
2801 E. ELVIRA BUILDING B
TUCSON AZ 85706 PH 1 800 227 4500
BOOKING REF: Z65AWB
YOUR ITINERARY AND TRAVEL DETAILS:

QANTAS AIRWAYS QF3082 ECONOMY CLASS (N) CONFIRMED
DEPART 12JUN07 WASHINGTON/DULLES INTL 1745
ARRIVE 12JUN07 LOS ANGELES/INTL 2020
OPERATED BY AA AMERICAN AIRLINES
ARRIVES AT TERMINAL 4 5:35 DURATION
AIRCRAFT : BOEING 757-200/300 NON SMOKING
SEATS (SUBJECT TO CHANGE) : 15A 15B 15C 15D 15E
----------------------------------------------------------------
QANTAS AIRWAYS QF12 ECONOMY CLASS (N) CONFIRMED
DEPART 12JUN07 LOS ANGELES/INTL 2230
ARRIVE 14JUN07 SYDNEY/KINGSFORDSMITH 0605
DEPARTS FROM TERMINAL 4
ARRIVES AT TERMINAL 1 14:35 DURATION
AIRCRAFT : BOEING 747-400 NON SMOKING
SEATS (SUBJECT TO CHANGE) : 52H 52J 52K 53J 53K
----------------------------------------------------------------
QANTAS AIRWAYS QF11 ECONOMY CLASS (N) CONFIRMED
DEPART 08AUG07 SYDNEY/KINGSFORDSMITH 1325
ARRIVE 08AUG07 LOS ANGELES/INTL 0945
DEPARTS FROM TERMINAL 1
ARRIVES AT TERMINAL 4 13:20 DURATION
AIRCRAFT : BOEING 747-400 NON SMOKING
----------------------------------------------------------------
QANTAS AIRWAYS QF3003 ECONOMY CLASS (N) CONFIRMED
DEPART 08AUG07 LOS ANGELES/INTL 1415
ARRIVE 08AUG07 WASHINGTON/DULLES INTL 2200
OPERATED BY AA AMERICAN AIRLINES
DEPARTS FROM TERMINAL 4
4:45 DURATION
AIRCRAFT : BOEING 737-800 NON SMOKING

Posted by: bberg009, 22 January 2008, 08:58 ( 8:58 AM)
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