Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg reminds Southwest Airlines CEO that thousands of stranded travelers are entitled to meal and hotel vouchers

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.Win McNamee/Getty Pictures

  • The US Division of Transportation is getting concerned with the Southwest Airways delays.

  • Sec. Pete Buttigieg met with the CEO of Southwest airways, in addition to union leaders, on Tuesday.

  • The DOT reminded passengers that the airline guarantees to supply meal vouchers and lodges to stranded vacationers.

Secretary Pete Buttigieg met with Southwest airways CEO Bob Jordan, in addition to union leaders, to reiterate the corporate’s “duties to clients” amid journey chaos, Buttigieg advised CNN’s Wolf Blitzer on Tuesday.

Buttigieg advised CNN that the Division of Transportation would maintain Southwest accountable after he mentioned the airline had promised the division in writing final summer season that they might “maintain clients” throughout delays and cancellations.

“Now that we now have these commitments that have been made to us over the summer season, we’ll be utilizing that as a device to carry them accountable,” Buttigieg mentioned on CNN. “And I made that clear to Southwest management. Now… the CEO pledged to me that they won’t solely meet however they are going to exceed the customer support requirements and commitments that they’ve made to us up to now and that we’re ready to implement.”

Southwest Airways canceled 1000’s of flights following the vacation weekend on account of the historic winter storm that has taken maintain throughout the nation. On Monday, the airline canceled almost 2,900 flights, or 70% of its whole flights.

Southwest advised Insider in an announcement Monday that the cancellations arose, partially, because of their scheduling instruments, which some airline staff have complained is outdated.

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“We’re encouraging Clients to submit receipts to be thought of for reimbursement. We have now assisted with lodges in some conditions,” the airline advised Insider.



On Twitter, the DOT linked to the Southwest Airways customer support plan, which states:

  • The airline will rebook clients on the subsequent accessible Southwest flight to your vacation spot at no extra value. Southwest additionally offers refunds for tickets.

  • For circumstances which can be throughout the airline’s management, workers will present a meal voucher upon request or will present “affordable” reimbursement for meals bought.

  • For circumstances which can be throughout the airline’s management, workers will prepare lodging upon request if accessible or present affordable reimbursement for lodging. Workers can even provide transportation vouchers or reimbursement.

  • For circumstances that aren’t throughout the airline’s management, workers can attempt to prepare reductions for lodging close to the airport.

On Monday, USDOT known as the quantity of cancellations from Southwest “unacceptable” and introduced that they might be investigating the reason for the delays.

“USDOT is anxious by Southwest’s unacceptable charge of cancellations and delays & reviews of lack of immediate customer support,” an announcement learn. “The Division will study whether or not cancellations have been controllable and if Southwest is complying with its customer support plan.”

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