Lawsuit Filed Against Top Airlines in US on Behalf of Travel Agents
On Monday, a federal lawsuit was filed in San Francisco on behalf of travel agents who are accusing the top airlines in the United States of blocking the lowest prices for connecting flights and multi-city itineraries.
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, the lawsuit claims American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines have enacted new rules to stop travel agents from being able to book the least expensive prices for one-way flights, resulting in higher fees.
The lawsuit alleges that the rules are a conspiracy to make travel agents and their customers spend more money, and are a violation of antitrust laws. Agents using reservation services were formerly able to find the lowest prices for each one-way flight on an itinerary and add them together for one total price.
Now, the least expensive fares can’t be combined, forcing travelers and their agents to purchase tickets for each flight separately, resulting in higher prices and higher fees. Delta was the first to add the new rules, with American and United making the changes soon after.
According to the lawsuit, the new rules and regulations posed by the top airlines in the United States have raised prices on multi-city trips, with travel agents possibly being on the hook to pay the difference between the lower one-way tickets and the new higher priced combination deals.
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