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Travel board
Does the anticipation of five hours on the tarmac and lost baggage have you dreading your next trip? Well, things may not be so bad - at least that's what the latest report from the Department of Transportation (DOT) says.

It seems DOT's new consumer protection measures, enacted last April, are making traveler's lives a little easier, according to August's Air Travel Consumer Report.

A new rule against domestic planes sitting on the tarmac for more than three hours seems to have made an impact. August's Air Travel Consumer Report listed only three domestic flights delayed for more than three hours in June of 2010, compared to 268 flights delayed for more than 3 hours in June 2009.

Additional improvements include:

  • Overall on-time performance for the largest airlines was 76.4 percent in June, compared to 76.1 percent in June 2009
  • The mishandled baggage rate of 3.72 reports per 1,000 passengers in June 2010 is down from 4.26 in June 2009

On the downside, consumer complaints skyrocketed to 958 in June 2010, compared to 503 total in June 2009. Complaints included issues with ticketing, boarding, travel agent mistakes, fares and pet deaths (six pet deaths in June 2010 versus five in June 2010).

So, it looks like not everyone is happy. 

Do these improvements make you more likely to book a flight?


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