The UK government has announced new measures to combat the hidden extra charges airlines cheat passengers with. Passengers flying with airlines from UK airports can be hit with extra charges as high as £160 for something as simple as changing names on reservations.
The proposed new measures will address name changes in addition to add-on surcharges for seats with more legroom, checked luggage and making the actual reservations. The Department for Transport (DfT) draught proposals show airlines will need to be transparent about any extra fees up front.
Airlines will also be forced to revise add-on fees deemed to be over excessive. According to reports on the new measures, airlines will no longer be able to ghost in the hidden fees during the reservations process and will be required to display 'the prices shown are what you will pay for your tickets'.
A quick glance through data on the hidden charges airlines tack on seems to indicate Ryanair is the worst culprit. Changing the passenger's name at the airport is a jaw-dropping £160 and likely far steeper than the cost of the original ticket. In comparison, a name change online is only £115 while for a maximum of only £52 it is an absolute bargain with easyJet.
DfT under-secretary Liz Sugg told media sources the Aviation Strategy was being designed to ensure customers were provided with all the necessary information needed to make wise decisions as to which airline to fly with. She added that at present the prices quoted did not include all the additional fees which could be accrued during the booking process.