Last updated: 06:00 PM ET, Wed June 10 2015

Visa Inc. Amends Rules To Help Airline Industry

Airlines & Airports | Rich Thomaselli | June 10, 2015

Visa Inc. Amends Rules To Help Airline Industry

Photo courtesy of Thinkstock

Visa Inc. can handle 56,000 transactions a second – a staggering number when you think about it.

Now think about how many, no matter how small the percentage, are really on the up-and-up?

Now the company is helping the airline industry combat fraud.

Visa is working with the Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC)-sponsored Credit Card Working Group (CCWG) and, effective October 2015, will accept airline-supplied flight manifests as a remedy for fraud payment card chargebacks.

This remedy represents an opportunity for the airline industry to recoup millions of dollars lost each year in “friendly fraud,” which occurs when a cardholder claims fraud for a transaction they were actually involved in.

Airline-supplied flight manifests will be accepted as a remedy for fraud when the passenger name matches the cardholder name. With the exception of Verified by Visa authentication, this is the first time a fraud chargeback remedy will be available for airline e-ticket purchases in a card-not-present environment.

Visa has accepted a flight manifest as “compelling evidence” since April 2013, but it wasn’t considered a remedy that would result in a fraud chargeback reversal. When compelling evidence came into effect, Visa worked with the industry, including the Chargeback Subgroup of the ARC Debit Memo Working Group, to evaluate potential remedies.

“Visa has taken a huge step in supporting the airline industry in the fight against friendly fraud,” Jennifer Watkins, ARC’s director of credit card services and fraud prevention, said in a statement. “Moving flight manifests to remedy status ensures that merchants will not be held liable for chargebacks when the cardholder is the passenger and the ticket was used.”

“Given the ongoing growth in card-not-present transaction volume, we have been working to evolve our dispute management processes for the entire merchant community, including the airline industry, to help merchants fight fraud more effectively and efficiently,” said Ramon Martin, global head of merchant solutions, Visa Inc. “We want these recent changes to be a positive step in streamlining the card-not-present dispute process for everyone involved.”

Bottom line? Don’t try to say you weren’t on a flight and get money back for a ticket purchased on Visa if you were actually on the flight.


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