Gov. Chris Christie calling for the government to ban airline overbooking

In the wake of the uproar over a passenger being violently dragged from a United Airlines plane last Sunday in Chicago when he refused to give up his seat on a fully-booked flight that United needed for crew members heading to staff another flight at the destination, New Jersey Republican Governor Chris Christie is calling for the federal government to ban airlines from being able to overbook flights. Fox News reported that Christie sent a letter to Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao in which he said, "We would ask, in the context of the president's efforts at regulatory reform to improve the lives of our citizens, that you consider the immediate suspension of this overbooking authority until a thorough review can be done by your department." Delta Air Lines CEO Edward Bastian defended the practice of overbooking yesterday (April 12th), telling reporters, "The key is managing [overbookings] before you get to the boarding process." In other words, before people have gotten on the plane, so you don't have to then try to get some of them off. He rejected the idea of an government ban on overbooking, saying, "I don't think we need to have additional legislation to try to control how the airlines run their business in this space." Airlines overbook flights to try to guarantee a full flight if people cancel or don't show up. Industry analysts say that ending it would cost airlines money, which would lead to higher fares for fliers



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