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Author: tomjet Three stars, 500 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 21027  
Subject: Re: My Final Word on Airlines' Overselling Date: 4/22/2007 9:44 AM
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Greetings:

This will clarify the prior post citing the federal government's statistic that, during the calendar year 2006, approximately one person per 100,000 was "involuntarily bumped."

This statistic says nothing about the total number of confirmed-ticket holders per 100,000 who arrived at their U.S. airport in 2006 and were denied boarding. This is because airlines and the federal government classify boarding denials into two categories: voluntary bumping and involuntary bumping.

Approximately 900,000 people each and every year since about 1990 arrive at their U.S. airport with confirmed tickets and are told that there is no seat for them on the plane. Of those 900,000, approximately 863,000 accept the airlines' offer of compensation (made at the gate generally). Those approx. 863,000 passengers are described as having been "voluntarily bumped" (because they accepted the airlines' compensation).

Approximately 37,000 people each year in the U.S. refuse the airlines' offer of compensation -- those folks are said to have been "involuntarily bumped."

The total number of 37,000 passengers does, in fact, translate to approximately 1.01 per 100,000 passengers. They were "involuntarily" bumped.

But, again, every year in this country, about 900,000 show up with their pre-paid, confirmed tickets at our U.S. airports and are informed, at the airport, that their flight was oversold, that there is no seat for them on the flight for which they had bought tickets and that if they would volunteer to fly on another flight, the airline will give them certain limited compensation (depending on the circumstances).

As recited in that 1976 U.S. Supreme Court case involving Ralph Nader, back in those days, the total number of confirmed-ticket holders who were bumped (voluntary and involuntary) was approximately 82,000 each year.

Tomjet
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