How airlines decide to board or not to board passengers

Photo by: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

Photo by: Ramesh Pathania/Mint

United Airlines is in the news again. Some years ago, a Canadian musician wrote a song, alleging that the airline broke his guitar. Hear the song here: This time, a passenger was forcibly de-boarded from a United flight, and nobody is amused.

Airlines regularly deny boarding to passengers as they overbook flights during peak times and most travellers know that de-boarding can happen to anyone. It is so common, there are rules about it and they are regularly updated too. In India, a new set of rules kicked in from August 2016. “Consumer protection vis-a-vis air passengers and airlines is an evolving subject in the Indian context,” said Mahesh Y. Reddy, secretary general, Air Passengers Association of India. Here are some scenarios is which you may be denied boarding, and your rights if you face this ordeal.

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