Notice of baggage fees and other fees.
(a) If a U. S. or foreign air carrier has a website accessible for ticket purchases by the general public in the U.S., the carrier must promptly and prominently disclose any increase in its fee for carry-on or first and second checked bags and any change in the first and second checked bags or carry-on allowance for a passenger on the homepage of that website (e.g., provide a link that says “changed bag rules” or similarly descriptive language and takes the consumer from the homepage directly to a pop-up or a place on another webpage that details the change in baggage allowance or fees and the effective dates of such changes). Such notice must remain on the homepage for at least three months after the change becomes effective.
(b) If a U.S. carrier, a foreign air carrier, an agent of either, or a ticket agent has a website accessible for ticket purchases by the general public in the U.S., the carrier or agent must clearly and prominently disclose on the first screen in which the agent or carrier offers a fare quotation for a specific itinerary selected by a consumer that additional airline fees for baggage may apply and where consumers can see these baggage fees. An agent may refer consumers to the airline websites where specific baggage fee information may be obtained or to its own site if it displays airlines' baggage fees.
(c) On all e-ticket confirmations for air transportation within, to or from the United States, including the summary page at the completion of an online purchase and a post-purchase email confirmation, a U.S. carrier, a foreign air carrier, an agent of either, or a ticket agent that advertises or sells air transportation in the United States must include information regarding the passenger's free baggage allowance and/or the applicable fee for a carry-on bag and the first and second checked bag. Carriers must provide this information in text form in the e-ticket confirmation. Agents may provide this information in text form in the e-ticket confirmations or through a hyperlink to the specific location on airline websites or their own website where this information is displayed. The fee information provided for a carry-on bag and the first and second checked bag must be expressed as specific charges taking into account any factors (e.g., frequent flyer status, early purchase, and so forth) that affect those charges.
(d) If a U.S. or foreign air carrier has a website marketed to U.S. consumers where it advertises or sells air transportation, the carrier must prominently disclose on its website information on fees for all optional services that are available to a passenger purchasing air transportation. Such disclosure must be clear, with a conspicuous link from the carrier's homepage directly to a page or a place on a page where all such optional services and related fees are disclosed. For purposes of this section, the term “optional services” is defined as any service the airline provides, for a fee, beyond passenger air transportation. Such fees include, but are not limited to, charges for checked or carry-on baggage, advance seat selection, in-flight beverages, snacks and meals, pillows and blankets and seat upgrades. In general, fees for particular services may be expressed as a range; however, baggage fees must be expressed as specific charges taking into account any factors (e.g., frequent flyer status, early purchase, and so forth) that affect those charges.
(e) For air transportation within, to or from the United States, a carrier marketing a flight under its identity that is operated by a different carrier, otherwise known as a code-share flight, must through its website disclose to consumers booked on a code-share flight any differences between its optional services and related fees and those of the carrier operating the flight. This disclosure may be made through a conspicuous notice of the existence of such differences on the marketing carrier's website or a conspicuous hyperlink taking the reader directly to the operating carrier's fee listing or to a page on the marketing carrier's website that lists the differences in policies among code-share partners.
(f) The Department considers the failure to give the appropriate notice described in paragraphs (a) through (e) of this section to be an unfair and deceptive practice within the meaning of 49 U.S.C. 41712.
[Doc. No. DOT-OST-2010-0140, 76 FR 23166, Apr. 25, 2011]