Friday, 15 November, 2019

'Skiplagging' passenger sued after ditching connecting flight

This Airline Is Suing a Passenger for Buying a Cheap Flight			    
    Jesse Tabit This Airline Is Suing a Passenger for Buying a Cheap Flight Jesse Tabit
Ginger Lawrence | 14 February, 2019, 08:24

Lufthansa launched the legal action against the single, solitary passenger as a means of blocking the reasonably common "hidden city" travel hack, which involves deliberately missing a connecting flight in order to save money. If a passenger books a flight from Sofia to Warsaw with an ongoing connection to Paris, however, they will pay £113.

But Lufthansa, which is vulnerable because Frankfurt and Munich are both used as stopovers for multi-stop flights, is looking to make an example to deter customers from using this hack.

Lufthansa is cracking down on a way for airline passengers to get cheaper fares-with a lawsuit that brings fresh attention to the practice.

According to a court document, an unnamed male passenger booked a return flight from Oslo to Seattle, which had a layover in Frankfurt. Rather than take the completing Frankfurt to Oslo leg, he instead took a different Lufthansa flight from Frankfurt to Berlin.

Lufthansa didn't like that.

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In the Lufthansa case, the airline sued the man and sought 2,112 euros ($3,370) compensation for the violation of its terms. The suit was initially dismissed by a Berlin court in December, but a spokesperson for Lufthansa confirmed to CNN that the airline had appealed the decision.

"I would simply have someone drive me 80 miles to Dayton, then fly back through Cincinnati to some destination".

Whether playing that game is kosher or not is up for debate. The airline wants the passenger to recompense them for the "tariff abuse". Among the myriad ways to shave down the cost of airfare, some websites recommend traveling exclusively on one-way tickets, which can often be cheaper than round-trip airfare.

The legal hounds at an airline's headquarters might argue that hidden city ticketing violates their "contract of carriage", but some travel industry observers disagree. In this case, a customer must buy a new ticket.