Striking the right balance between consumer protection and practical industry implementation will be a key goal for the Association of Retail Travel Agents (ARTA) who reports it has accepted an invitation to attend and participate at the first meeting of the Advisory Committee on Aviation Consumer Protection formed by the Department of Transportation (DOT).
ARTA notes that Section 411 of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 called for the establishment of an advisory committee for the purpose of advising the Secretary of Transportation on airline customer service issues.
The statute requires the advisory committee to evaluate and provide recommendations to the Secretary of the DOT for improving existing aviation consumer protection programs and for establishing additional such programs if appropriate.
The meeting will take place at the DOT headquarters in Washington DC, on Thursday, 28 June 2012.
"ARTA very much supports protecting consumers in all aviation matters and travel in general. What is key to successfully deploying that support means practical and common-sense industry implementation. As de facto agents of the airlines, and agents of consumers in our own right, any regulatory regime imposed on the industry must have roots based in fairness, practicality, and above all, commercial viability. ARTA's mandate is to assure a balanced approach, leading to consumer protection which makes good sense," said ARTA Managing Director Bruce Bishins.
ARTA said it will make a brief presentation to the committee emphasizing the need for evenhandedness.