Forum for airline passengers

An app to check your rights

You are stranded at a European airport or observe that your bag is missing. An airline employee may tell you that you have no rights as it is not the carrier's fault.

You wish you could check your rights yourself on the spot. From now on, you can by using your smartphone. The European Commission has launched an app that works on Apple iPhone and iPad, Google Android, RIM Blackberry and Microsoft Windows Phone 7.

The app is available in 22 EU languages and gives you easy access...
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Sitting next to a dead man

Lena Pettersson, a Swedish radio broadcaster, looks forward to her vacation in Tanzania. When she boards a Kenya Airways flight in Amsterdam, she notes a tall man who is sweating and has cramp.

Although flight attendants are aware of the situation, the flight takes off to Dar es Salaam. Once the plane is airborne they ask for doctors on board.

The man gets a cardiac massage, reports the Swedish newspaper Expressen, but he dies a few hours later in flight.


Flight attendants cover the corpse with a blanket and place it along 3 seats across the aisle from Pettersson,...

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Where is the captain?

It takes Marc Dubois more than a minute to return to the cockpit when his 2 co-pilots are calling frantically for help. Dubois is the captain of the Air France flight 447 that plunges into the Atlantic while it is en route from Rio de Janeiro to Paris on June 1, 2009. More than a minute is long considering that the plane 4 minutes and 23 seconds after the autopilot disengaged hits the water. It was never revealed why it takes him that long, but according to ABC News he is traveling socially with Veronique Gaignard, an off-duty Air France...
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The political illusion of security

The way airline security has been organized since 9/11 imposes an enormous burden on passengers both in terms of money and time. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) estimates that the cost of security has risen to at least €6 billion ($7.4 billion) a year.

It takes passengers longer and longer to get through security. Before 9/11, the average throughput of an airport security checkpoint was 355 passengers per hour. By adding ever more bureaucracy this average has more than halved to 149 passengers per hour.

Given the...
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Are frequent flyers overpaying?

Delta Air Lines has charged frequent flyers higher fares than customers who searched the airline’s web site anonymously. But Delta says frequent flyers also see sometimes lower fares. The experience of 2 travelers sitting side-by-side with their laptops open is markedly different. One of them logs in as a frequent flier, the other as an anonymous client. Three out of 5 searches show higher fares for the frequent flyer. The other times the prices are the same. The differences in fares are substantial. In one case they observe a price difference of almost $300 (€235) for an economy fare and...
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All you can fly

In 1981, it seems a good idea. American Airlines starts selling lifetime unlimited AAirpasses hoping to raise millions of dollars at a time when interest rates are sky high.

Prices start at $250,000 (€194,000), while an extra $150,000 (€116,000) buys a companion pass. Older fliers get discounts based on their age.

AAirpass holders earn frequent flier miles on every trip and are lifetime members to the Admirals Club, American's airport lounges.

American sold 66 unlimited AAirpasses. Over time the price increased to $3 million (€2.3...
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