August 10 - Excessive Tarmac Delays Virtually Disappear In June

Too soon for a victory lap though

August 10, 2010, WASHINGTON, DC - Business Travel Coalition (BTC) today responded positively to news from the U.S. DOT that tarmac delays greater than three hours in duration fell from 268 in June of 2009 to 3 in June of 2010, without any corresponding increase in the cancellation rate.

“This is very positive news for consumers and would appear to point to validation of DOT’s implementation-timetable of 120 days for airlines to adjust to the new 3-hour rule,” stated Coalition chairman Kevin Mitchell. “However, it’s premature for a victory lap among supporters of the new rules as 2 full months of data is insufficient to draw definitive longer-term conclusions.”

BTC believes that if these positive outcomes hold up for the rest of the summer, then an appropriate conclusion would be that airlines, faced with the right level of financial incentives, can indeed move swiftly to comply with new rules even in a highly complex area of their business.

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