亚航不退款被媒体批评

中国青年报

在2011年,亚洲航空远程公司(简称亚航X)首席执行官阿兹兰·奥斯曼-瑞尼接受媒体专访时就表示,中国市场已经是亚航X第二大市场,市场份额占到25%,第一位的是澳大利亚,占30%。“但我想在两年之后形势会有一个逆转,中国将会变成我们最大的市场”。

  亚航在中国的市场份额如此之大,但上网搜索亚航相关信息,却发现有许多至今未收到退款或曾经遇到过亚航拖延退款的帖子。对此亚航也有自己的原则,在其官网《 航班航运条款和条件》的第九条中,说明了对航程表和航班取消的相关规定,亚航X表示任何情况下改变航班所造成的损失都不会负责任:

  “9.1航程表:我们会尽我们最大的能力避免耽误您或您的行李。我们将会尽力遵守公布的行程时间表。虽然如此,在时间表、行程或其他地方所展示的时间会随时改变,并且无论在任何情况下,对于由此改变所蒙受的任何损失,我们不负责任。

  “9.2取消、更换航程表:当机位订购后,我们在任何时候可能会更改航程和/或取消、终止、转移、延期、重新安排、或耽误任何航程,只要我们有理由认为此更换是因出现了超越我们控制范围的情况,或因安全或商业的理由所必需的。如果该航班被取消,我们将以我们持有的特权,作出以下举措:

  (a)只要有空位,我们就会最先给您安排定期航班中的下一班飞机,并且不收取额外收费,如有需要,我们还会延长您预订的有效期限;

  (b)如果您选择在另一时间飞行,我们会把您机票的价值保留在信用账户上,以便您在将来的旅行时使用,但您必须在3个月内重新订购。

  ©全额退款给您,如果我们未能在原定起飞的48小时内运送您往返您的目的地。

  “9.3唯一解决方案:除了公约的具体规定适用外,条款9.2所提供的选择(a)、(b)和©是唯一提供给您选择的解决方案,我们的责任也仅限于此。”

  那么,是不是一家航空公司打着廉价的牌子就可以免责呢?是不是每一个购买亚航机票的消费者在付款之前都已经清晰地了解了亚航的免责条款呢?也就是说,你是否了解买的是一张随时可以被取消的机票。

U.S. to allow expanded electronic device use on flights

Oct 31 (Reuters) – Airline passengers will soon be able to use certain electronic devices throughout their entire flight after the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration ended a long-standing ban on Thursday.

Mobile phone calls remain barred under Federal Communications Commission rules. But fliers will be free to keep smartphones, tablets and e-readers running in “airplane” mode.

Delta Air Lines Inc and JetBlue Corp quickly filed plans with the FAA to show that their aircraft can tolerate radio signals from electronic devices, a condition required by the regulator.

The change is likely to boost the use of gadgets such as Amazon Inc’s Kindle readers or Apple Inc’s iPad.

“Most commercial airlines can tolerate radio interference from portable electronic devices,” FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said at a news conference at Reagan National Airport near Washington, D.C. “It’s safe to read downloaded materials, like e-books, calendars and to play games.”

Passengers will be able to connect with an airline’s WiFi network and can use Bluetooth accessories, such as wireless mouse and headphones.

“ALWAYS-ON” CONNECTIVITY ON THE HORIZON

A big winner from the change could be Gogo Inc, whose shares closed 4.5 percent higher. The company supplies Internet service to about 80 percent of U.S. aircraft.

The FAA’s move is “another favorable tailwind,” Gogo Chief Executive Michael Small told Reuters.

The FAA’s decision is likely to move more passengers toward “always-on” connectivity, said Jonathan Schildkraut, an analyst at Evercore Partners in New York.

“Any increase in time spent connected is viewed as a positive,” he said.

Technology fans have recently decried the “high cost to the traveling public” of passengers not having unfettered access to their mobile devices.

“More than 105 million hours of disrupted technological activity on domestic flights is projected in 2013 – an estimated 104 percent increase since 2010 – due to the FAA ban on the use of devices during takeoffs and landings,” according to a May 2013 study by the Chaddick Institute for Metropolitcan Development at Chicago’s DePaul University.

The FCC in May started deliberations on a proposal that would offer a new type of in-flight broadband service promising U.S. fliers higher Wi-Fi speeds and better connections. The proposal, which has been pushed for years by wireless equipment maker Qualcomm Inc, seeks to open up more radio airwaves for airborne Internet access.

In a statement, acting FCC Chairwoman Mignon Clybourn said the agency continues to study how best to promote consumers’ and businesses’ ability to use wireless devices on aircraft and elsewhere.

As a practical matter, cellphones should be kept in airplane mode during flight, the FAA’s Huerta said. Without this setting, cellphones would continue to search vainly for a signal while aloft, draining batteries.

Huerta said the guidance applies to U.S. airlines throughout their domestic and international routes.

POLICY WAS 50 YEARS OLD

Huerta said he sought updated guidance on the matter, since the current policy was put in place about 50 years ago.

Among those giving input to the FAA for the long-awaited decision were representatives of airlines, plane manufacturers, passengers, flight attendants and the mobile technology industry.

A committee set up to recommend how the rules should change started work in January on what was to be a 6-month project. It later got a 2-month extension to work on guidance on how airlines could assess the safety risk posted to critical flight systems.

A backer of the change, the Consumer Electronics Association on Wednesday urged the agency to ease restrictions before the busy holiday travel season. It said the FAA’s move “will bring policy on in-flight use of devices up to speed with the 21st century.”

Huerta said that in some cases of extremely low visibility, for perhaps 1 percent of all U.S. flights, some landing systems may not be able to tolerate radio interference, and in those cases passengers should follow the advice of flight crews.

The Association of Flight Attendants-CWA applauded the decision as it pushed for “uniform technical, operational, and training standards that will allow for the safe, managed expansion of PED usage by passengers.”

The U.S. Travel Association, an industry group, praised the move as a “common-sense, win-win” policy.

But one lawmaker warned airlines and fliers to curb their enthusiasm and focus on safety first.

“Having access to e-mail or a movie is not worth compromising the safety of any flight,” said Senator Jay Rockefeller, chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

Hawaii Senate passes bill to legalize gay marriage

(Reuters) – Hawaii’s state Senate approved legislation on Wednesday to legalize same-sex marriage in a state long popular as a wedding and honeymoon destination, voting overwhelmingly to repeal a voter-approved constitutional amendment banning gay matrimony.

The 20-4 vote in favor of the bill, with three Democrats joining the state Senate’s lone Republican to oppose the measure, came two days after the start of a special session called by Democratic Governor Neil Abercrombie to take up the legislation. One senator was absent for the vote.

If the bill is approved, as expected, by the state House of Representatives – where Democrats outnumber Republicans 44-7 – Hawaii would become the 15th vote to make it legal for gay and lesbian couples to wed.

A House committee is expected to hold a hearing on the measure on Thursday. No floor action in the lower chamber has been scheduled.

Abercrombie has said the proposal was crafted to address opponents’ concerns that legalizing gay marriage would infringe on religious freedom. The proposal exempts clergy and churches from having to perform same-sex marriages.

Abercrombie, who served more than two decades in the U.S. House of Representatives before running for governor in 2010, signed a same-sex civil unions bill into law two years ago and has since been a vocal proponent of gay marriage.

His predecessor, Republican Linda Lingle, vetoed a civil unions bill in 2010.

The special session in Hawaii comes at a time of increasing momentum for gay marriage in the courts, at the ballot box and statehouses across the country.

Only six states and the District of Columbia recognized same-sex marriage a year ago, but the number has since more than doubled, due in most cases to litigation over the issue.

Three states – Maine, Maryland and Washington – became the first to extend marriage rights to same-sex couples by popular vote with passage of ballot initiatives last November.

Last week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie dropped his legal opposition to gay marriage, making his state the 14th to legalize same-sex weddings.

The debate has long divided the “Aloha State.”

In 1993, the Hawaiian Supreme Court ruled it was discriminatory to deny marriage rights to same-sex couples.

The ruling prompted a conservative backlash. In 1998, Hawaiian voters approved a state constitutional amendment that limited the right to marry to heterosexual couples.

Gay marriage opponents have opposed action in the Legislature and instead argued that the matter should be left to the voters. Gay marriage supporters counter that questions of basic civil liberties should not be left to popular vote.