Consumer Groups Push Back After DOT Scraps Airline Fee Transparency Efforts

Consumer advocacy groups are raising concerns about the U.S. Department of Transportation’s decision not to pursue regulations that could have increased transparency of airline baggage fees and other add-on charges.The federal agency last week announced it was withdrawing two notices of proposed rulemaking that were investigating possible regulations requiring airlines to disclose bag fees earlier in the booking process and provide more detailed reporting about the fees they collect.While the rulemaking processes wouldn’t have necessarily resulted in regulations, consumer advocacy groups said the Department of Transportation's action is the latest in a string of decisions that have leaned in airlines’ favor. It's also another sign of a light-touch regulatory approach that has marked President Donald Trump's first year in office. “What they’re doing now is stepping back from that kind of [consumer] protection,” said Charlie Leocha, president of Travelers United, one of several groups that have criticized the decision. “It’s like the police department deciding they’re not going to investigate a crime.”  Continue reading...

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