NCAA Sensitises Air Travellers over Flight Delays, Cancellation

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Posted by JUSTOURS News

An airline’s customer is charged certain huge amount for no-show which is a fee charged by airlines for delays and cancellation. But airlines operating in the country hardly refund their customers when the delay is from them. The matter has become a public discourse following the many flight cancellations and delays by airlines, especially IbomAir and Dana Airlines.                                                       The chaotic situations at the boarding gates in our airports as a result of the problem always ended with stranded travellers insisting on refunds. The airlines usually don’t pay attention even the laws on 100 per cent refund on air tickets in case of three hours delay is not novel.  The Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulation (NCAR) has announced it would soon commence public sensitization to enlighten the travelling public. Thus, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has stressed that the law was gazetted by the Federal Government and has been in existence since 2015.                                                      The Director General of NCAA, Capt. Musa Nuhu, in an interview with aviation journalists in Lagos, recently, said the agency would in the coming weeks commence information drive to passengers, this he said would enable them to respond appropriately in case their rights are trampled upon by airlines.

According to him, before the 2015 amendment to the extant regulations, airlines were supposed to pay 100 per cent compensation to passengers after two hours of delay, but the regulatory agency amended it to three hours in order to accommodate the complaints of the indigenous airlines and in a bid to ensure fair play for all.

Nuhu insisted that whatever the Minister of Aviation Senator Hadi Sirika, said on compensation, recently was not new, stressing that the minister was not reinventing the wheel.

He, however, clarified that in case of natural phenomenon, the airlines would not be sanctioned by the agency, describing it as a force majeure. airlines were given Air Operators’ Certificates (AOCs) based on the fact that they would comply with civil aviation regulations, maintaining that once any of the carriers is found wanting, the agency would not hesitate to sanction such an airline accordingly.

Nuhu, however, regretted that most passengers don’t report to the regulatory agency whenever their rights were trampled upon, pointing out that very soon, NCAA would commence a campaign to educate the travelling public on their rights and the available report channels.

“The minister was just referring to NCAA in his statement. Before the amendment to the regulation, airlines were supposed to pay full compensation to air travellers the moment their flight is delayed for two hours, but during the review, the operators complained that the two hours was too short. Then, it was extended to three hours.

“We will implement the new law to the letter, but if the consumers don’t complain, how can we know? We need to educate the passengers about their rights. All airlines were given AOCs based on the fact that they will comply with the regulations. During our surveillance, if we find out that they don’t comply appropriately, we will sanction,” he also said.

“But, on the issue of force majeure, you can’t sanction them. It is an act of nature and even, the law recognises this.”

The NCAR 2015 Section 19.6.1.1 as amended indicated that for domestic flights, when an operating air carrier reasonably expects a flight to be delayed beyond its scheduled time of departure, it would provide the passengers with reason(s) for the delay within 30 minutes after the scheduled departure time.

It states that after two hours, refreshments as specified in section 19.10.1 (i) and telephone calls, SMS and e-mails as specified in section 19.10.2; while beyond three hours, reimbursement as specified in Section

19.9.1(i) ; and (iii) at a time beyond 10pm till 4am, or at a time when the airport was closed at the point of departure or final destination, the assistance specified in sections 19.10.1 (iii) and 19.10.1(iv) (hotel accommodation and transport.                      Contact us: just_tours @yahoo.com

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