Taking a serious note of the indiscriminate policies followed by airlines on flight cancellations, the Civil Aviation Ministry on Saturday announced a host of steps to rein them in and said such charges can't exceed the base fare.
At a press conference here, Civil Aviation Minister P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju also said airlines must ensure that refunds on cancelled tickets were made within 15 days, even if the bookings were made through agents or portals.
"All taxes, levies and user and airport development fees shall be refunded in case of no-show and cancellations," the minister said. "The compensation has also been significantly enhanced to up to Rs 20,000, in case of denied boarding due to over-booking."
In case of flight cancellations announced within 24 hours of departure, the compensation amount has been enhanced to up to Rs 10,000. This apart, refunds will also be applicable on all fares, including promotional and special rates.
"It shall also be the prerogative of passenger to decide whether to get cash refund or hold the amount in credit."
Also taking note of arbitrary levy on excess baggage, the minister said such charges for up to 5 kg beyond the 15 kg limit can be charged at no more than Rs 100 per kg.
"The regulations are also being amended to ensure significant improvement in the facilities to persons with disabilities."