The recent United Airlines fiasco has brought to public attention the varying policies airlines have when a flight is overbooked. To put a long story short, airlines are allowed to deny boarding to certain passengers when a flight is overbooked.
That’s even written on the ticket itself.
Best you didn’t know that, did you?
How airlines choose those particular passengers, and how they choose to handle those passengers are up to the airlines themselves, and as you can tell, some manage to do that better than some others.
Airlines do this in anticipation of no-shows, as they do not wish to fly with any empty seats if they can help it. The unfortunate side-effect of this is sometimes passengers get denied boarding. However, most, if not all, airlines will offer compensation for passengers who volunteer to be bumped to another flight.
In most cases, passengers will be informed before boarding, instead of after boarding, and are entitled to compensation. In the United Airlines fiasco, the deplaned passengers were offered USD$800.
In Singapore, if you get bumped off either Scoot or Tigerair, you’ll be reallocated to another flight at check-in, and accommodation will be provided if the next flight is in a long while. If the passenger chooses to make their own arrangements, the full flight ticket will be refunded.
For Singapore Airlines, reallocated passengers are also offered a free ticket upgrade, or meal and travel vouchers. You can check out their notice here, under Denied Boarding. Guess you didn’t expect that you can actually see this online, eh?
Generally, overbooking is not an issue in Singapore, as airlines here are more conservative when it comes to overbooking. In the rare cases where a passenger is bumped off, they are usually offered an alternate arrangement.
In fact, there have been no complaints regarding overbooking in Singapore since January last year.
Unfortunately, the industry practise of overbooking is here to stay, as airlines require some way to offset the loss of flying with empty seats, in order to keep prices competitive.
Now that you know, here’s a tip to avoid being the chosen one: be early during check-in. Some airlines do choose based on who check in first!
Since you’re here, why not check out Goody Feed’s YouTube videos as well? They’re so Singaporean, I bet you’ll like them!
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This article was first published on goodyfeed.com