For anyone who has ever been put off by an airline’s overly complicated explanation of their already cryptic fare schedule, there might be a slight, sweet taste of vengeance in this news: The Dept. of Transportation just slapped US Airways with a $40,000 fine for not disclosing their full ticket prices on their Web site.
According to DOT regulations, all airlines must disclose the full price on the first screen providing a quote for any particular flight. But US Airways got caught listing fares that either didn’t include all additional taxes and fees or didn’t make mention that taxes and fees would later be added on before finalizing your purchase.
US Airways did what all good companies do when caught making a mistake — blamed the tech people. In a statement, they said the error “was wholly unintentional and the result of an inadvertent programming error.”
The airline claims the error was “limited to a small percentage of the total searches conducted at the US Airways Web site,” and was never intended to mislead customers.
“No consumer purchased a ticket without full knowledge of the total price before the entry of a credit-card number,” US Airways said.
The airline has 15 days to fork over the cash.
US Airways fined over pricing on Web site [Philadelphia Inquirer]