'One carry-on bag' rule imposed by certain airlines :
- extracts from the oral question by Brian SIMPSON (S&D, UK)
Première transmission: 17/01/2013
Strasbourg, France - European Parliament
Fin de production: 17/01/2013
MEPs argued that the "one bag" rule imposed by some airlines infringes passengers' rights, in a debate with the Commission today. They will also discuss whether airlines should be allowed to specify "essential" or "non-essential" items or to otherwise restrict cabin baggage allowances, particularly as regards passengers’ airport retail purchases. MEPs put pressure on the Commission to harmonise commercial practices and set minimum upper limits for the size and weight of hand luggage on EU flights.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior shot of the EP, Strasbourg
||SOUNDBITE (English) Brian SIMPSON (S&D, UK), Chair of the Transport Committee: "My committee feels that action needs to be taken to address the inconsistency and the lack of transparency which often faces the travelling public when travelling by air. It is being standard practice for a number of years that passengers are allowed to take airport purchases onboard an aircraft free of charge as part as their carry-on allowance. And it was the introduction of charges for these purchases, as well as charges of extra-luggage like laptops that sparked off this oral question. In some airports with some airlines a bottle of whiskey got charged and in others it didn't".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Brian SIMPSON (S&D, UK), Chair of the Transport Committee: "My concern is that over recent years certain airlines looked to charge for everything, and others don't. And it's in this area of charging that I would ask the Commission to ask, to give the public full transparency and to help alleviate the cancer that is add-on charges which bedevil the European aviation and leave passengers often angry, confused and with the feeling of having been robbed".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Karel DE GUCHT, Commissioner: "If the market functions and information is transparently available this may become a criteria for choosing one area rather than another. When it comes to passenger rights, passengers do have the right to know the conditions whereby they can carry luggage in accordance with the principle of transparency as let down in the existing legislation. The Commission therefore considers that by providing better information to passengers, the issue of inconsistencies among airlines and application of the luggage handling procedure can be effectively addressed".
||SOUNDBITE (English) Karel DE GUCHT, Commissioner: "The Commission takes note that part of the industry considers that the 'one-bag' policy affects the interest of retailers and airports. The Commission takes the view that commercial relationships are a matter to be agreed by airports and airlines and/or airlines and passengers provided that they will not pose a risk to safety or security rules".
||SOUNDBITE (German) Georges BACH (EPP, LU) on the fact that the legislation from 2004 needs to be reviewed, establishing a sort of unified system for pasenger's rights: "The Commission needs to be proactive and not just be waiting from a ruling of the Court of Justice".
||SOUNDBITE (Dutch) Saïd EL KHADRAOUI (S&D, BE): "Of course the National authorities have a role to play here, but we think that the Commission has to play an important role in this. We need clear rules establishing that the control of hand luggage must be done at the check-in desk, and that the products purchased after that should be allowed to be carried onboard, eventually under a certain number of restrictions. But information on it needs to be totally clear."
||Cutaways (4 cutaways)