Just a thought Globetraveler... those seats were paid for, in advance. This means that the airline had taken money for something they didn't have. In most cases that is illegal, it's called fraud.Additionally, the 16% empty seats were paid for. The airline loses nothing flying with empty seats that were purchased. If you miss your flight and have to change to another one, you pay extra money as well. So the airlines make money once again for their inconvenience at having to place you onto a different flight.I have a hard time swallowing the "poor airlines are doing their best" theory. There are numerous problems with how the airlines are run and there may never be good answers to them, but over doing customer service and compensation for overselling seats is hardly what's bringing them, or has brought them, to their financial knees.How about pilots that make $275,000 a year? CEO's that make millions upon millions while the stock of the company tanks on a yearly basis? Everyone seems astonished that LUV can be profitable year after year, but still maintains some of the best statistics in the industry... and I've never been involuntarily bumped from a LUV flight in many years of travel. Yes, they have oversold flights, but their compensation has always been exceptional to the point that they usually have more wanting to take the compensation than they have need for.Really what the point is, is that some common sense has to be instilled into the process. Flights need to leave on time. If the passengers aren't present, the flight leaves. They will be put on the next flight to the same destination that has available seats, for a charge. If the airline overbooks the flight, they should be just as liable as the customer. Passengers should be repaid for prepaid vacation items that they can verify, etc. I imagine that the whole process would run much more efficiently if everyone, customer and business, were held to a higher standard.
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