From airlines to ticket sellers, companies fight U.S. to keep junk fees
Powerful lobbyists have warred with the Biden administration over the new regulatory crackdown
November 20, 2023
Frustrated with airlines that charge passengers steep fees to check bags and change flights, President Biden last fall embarked on a campaign to crack down on the practice - and force companies to show the full price of travel before people pay for their tickets.
Fliers rejoiced, flooding the Department of Transportation with letters urging it to adopt the policy. Airlines including American, Delta and United, however, did not seem so enthused.
It would be too difficult to disclose the charges more clearly, warned Doug Mullen, the deputy general counsel at Airlines for America, an industry lobbying group representing the three carriers. Testifying at a federal hearing in March, he said the new policy would only cause customers "confusion and frustration" - and, besides, the extra costs for bags and other services historically have resulted in "very few complaints."