Johns Hopkins Travel Center

 Flying on Bankrupt Airlines
 Airline Toll Free Numbers & Websites
 FAA Airport Status
 Carrying Extra Baggage
 Food Service by Airline
 What Airlines Charge to Change Tickets
 TSA List of Prohibited Items

Flying on Bankrupt Airlines(9/15/05)

With the announcement that Northwest and Delta Airlines are being added to the list of airlines that have claimed bankruptcy, we would like to bring you up to speed on your rights and precautions when traveling.

  1. Use a credit card. When selecting a supplier rumored to be in financial trouble, consumers should pay by credit card. Under the Fair Credit Billing Act, credit card customers have the right to refuse paying for charges for services not rendered. Details of the Fair Credit Billing Act can be found at the Federal Trade Commission's Website. - Section 145. Consumers who already have purchased a ticket on an airline that ceases operations may be entitled to stand-by travel on other airlines.
  2. Section 145 of the Aviation and Transportation Security Act provides that airline passengers holding tickets (paper or electronic) from a bankrupt carrier for a particular route are entitled, at minimum, to transportation on a space-available basis on ANY airline currently serving that route provided the passenger makes alternate arrangements within 60 days after an airline has suspended operations. Additionally, the maximum fee that an airline can charge for providing standby transportation should not exceed $50 each way. Unless extended, Section 145 is valid through November 19, 2005. -
  3. File a claim. If an airline defaults and a consumer is unable to take advantage of the Fair Credit Billing Act or Section 145, he should file a claim with the bankruptcy court. The bankruptcy court usually provides filing instructions, including claim forms, within months after a bankruptcy is filed.

Frequent Flier Miles
As the airlines continue to change policies, Frequent Flier programs are not immune to changes. As always, manage your account and use the miles as soon as you can.

Non-Refundable Change Policies Update
Airlines continue to change policies on a daily basis. Check with the airline to revisit airline non-refundable ticket change policies.

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Carrying Extra Baggage(5/2/05)

The following fees are charged by airlines for excess, overweight and oversized checked bags on domestic flights. Most airlines allow two checked bags free of charge if they meet weight and size limits. JetBlue, Southwest and ATA allow three.
Airline Charge per excess bag Charge per overweight bag of 51-70 lbs. Charge per overweight bag of 71-100 lbs. Charge per oversized bag
$50 No charge $65 $65
$50 1st-3rd bags(1), $75 4th-6th, $150 additional bags $25 $50 $50 or $75(2)
Aloha $25-$105(3) $25 Not allowed $50 or $80(4)
America West $80 1st-7th $50 $80 $80
American $80 1st-3rd, $105 4th-6th, $180 additional bags $25 $50 $80
ATA $50 1st-6th, $110 additional bags $25 $50 $50
Continental $80 $25 $50 $80
Delta $40 1st bag, $80 2nd & 3rd, $105 4th-6th, $180 additional bags $25 $80 $80
Frontier $50 1st & 2nd, $100 3rd-15th, $200 additional bags $50 $50 $50
Hawaiian $25-$180(5) $25 Not allowed $50 or $160(6)
Independence $25 $25 $25 $25
JetBlue $50 No charge $50 $50
Midwest $50 $25 $50 $80
Northwest $80 1st-3rd, $105 4th-6th, $180 additional bags $25 $50 $80
Southwest $50 1st-9th, $110 additional bags $25 $50 $50
Spirit $50 No charge $50 $50
$80 $25 $25 $80
US Airways $90 1st-3rd, $105 4th-6th, $180 additional bags $30 $85 $90
(1) some flights have less expensive fees; (2) $50 for bags 62-80 linear inches, $75 for bags 81-115 linear inches; (3) for flights within Hawaii, $25 each for 1st-5th bags, $35 for each additional bag. For flights to and from U.S. mainland, $80 each for 1st-5th bags, $105 for each additional bag.; (4) $50 for flights within Hawaii, $80 for flights to and from U.S. mainland; (5) $25 for flights within Hawaii. For flights to or from U.S. mainland, $80 each for 1st-3rd bags, $105 each for 4th-6th bags, $180 each for additional bags; (6) $50 for flights within Hawaii; $160 for flights to or from the U.S. mainland.
Source: Airlines

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Food Service by Airline (3/11/05)

As a general rule most flights under 90 minutes to two hours will not have food service. In addition, most domestic carriers now offer meals for sale, with the exception of Delta and Continental where coach meals/snacks remain complimentary.

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What Airlines Charge to Change Tickets (1/25/05)

Airline Maximum fee for changing domestic ticket Maximum fee for changing international ticket Fee for changing free frequent-flier ticket Comments
AirTran $50 No flights abroad $50  
Alaska $50 $50 $50 No fee for a frequent-flier ticket if change is made within three days after booking.
Aloha $100 $100 $15-$100 The fee is $15 for flights within Hawaii, $25 for flights between U.S. mainland cities and $100 for trans-Pacific flights.
America West $100 $100 Up to $75 No fee for changing the date or time of a frequent-flier ticket. A $75 fee is charged for changing the destination or the name on the ticket, or canceling the ticket.
American $100 $200 $100 The fee is $25-$100 for domestic tickets, $25-$200 for international tickets. No fee for a frequent-flier ticket if only a change of date and/or time is made.
ATA $50 $50 $50  
Continental $100 $200 $50 Fee is $50-$100 for domestic, $100-$200 for international.
Delta $50 $200 $50  
Frontier $25 $25 None  
Hawaiian $200 $200 $15-$200 The fee is $15 per flight within Hawaii and $100 per flight outside Hawaii. On flights outside Hawaii, changes to both departing and return flights incur a $200 fee.
Independence $25 No flights abroad $25  
JetBlue $25 $25 $25 Online change: $20; with airline representative: $25.
Midwest $100 $100 None On domestic flights, $100 for change to tickets for Signature Service seats, $50 for Saver Service seats. Name change to frequent-flier ticket is $50.
Northwest $100 $200 $50 The fee is $25-$100 for domestic tickets, $100-$150 for trans-Pacific, $200 for trans-Atlantic. No fee for frequent-flier ticket if change is made online more than 30 days before flight; $25 if made online within 30 days before flight or at airport kiosk.
Southwest None No flights abroad None  
Spirit $25 $25 No program No fee if change is made online more than a month before flight.
United $100 $200 $100  
US Airways $100 $200 $50 No fee for frequent fliers if change is made after travel begins.
Source: USA TODAY research 1/25/05

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last updated 9.15.05