This month, new legislation was signed to improve the comfort, convenience, and security of air travel for your travelers. The new Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act of 2018 was signed by President Trump, giving $90 billion to FAA programs over the next five years. Changes based on this new legislation include:

Airline Responsibilities

The Reauthorization Act prohibits airlines from bumping passengers who have already boarded the plane, and requires the FAA to set a minimum size for seat width and pitch. The new law does not directly address airline change fees, but airlines are required to refund travelers for “services they paid for but did not receive.” The government will also be required to review whether it is considered “unfair or disruptive” when flights are delayed due to weather, despite other factors.

Passenger Comfort and Convenience

The Reauthorization Act prohibits travelers from placing pets in overhead bins, using e-cigarettes, or making voice calls on their phone during flight. The legislation stipulates that airlines allow passengers to check strollers if they are traveling with small children and that pregnant women board the plane first.

Safety and Security

Unruly passengers will now face increased penalties if they interfere with the flight crew, and a task force will be established to investigate sexual harassment within the airline industry. This legislation goes beyond the individual traveler specifications to address more defined requirements including the use of drones and other safety related matters.

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