Skiplagged is a travel service offering low-cost flights and displaying “hidden-city” ticketing itineraries. American Airlines has initiated legal action against Skiplagged.
This week, American filed a lawsuit against Skiplagged in federal court in Fort Worth, Texas. The lawsuit accuses Skiplagged of fraud since the website enables travellers to book a connecting trip that is often cheaper than a non-stop flight while not going to the route’s end destination. American filed the case this week.
According to American Airlines, Skiplagged “employs unauthorized and deceptive ticketing practices, entices consumers to participate in those deceptive practices by promising savings, and then doesn’t deliver.”
According to the lawsuit, “instead, Skiplagged frequently charges customers more than they would have paid had they booked their ticket directly with American or through an authorized agent of American.”
It went on to accuse Skiplagged of misleading the general public into believing that “even though it has no authority to form and issue a contract on American’s behalf, somehow it can still issue a completely valid ticket.” This accusation referred to the fact that Skiplagged does not have the ability to make and issue a contract on American’s behalf.
In addition, the lawsuit asserts that Skiplagged misleads customers into believing that the American tickets it advertises “will give the consumer access to some kind of secret ‘loophole’.” It was stated that many of the tickets that are displayed on Skiplagged are, in fact, greater than the prices that customers would pay if they booked a ticket straight from American’s website or through an official approved American agent.
American then threatened to void every ticket sold by Skiplagged, stating that “every ‘ticket’ used by Skiplagged is at risk of being invalidated.” Skiplagged was the company that sold the tickets.
In addition to request permanent injunction to compel Skiplagged to comply with the airline restrictions, the lawsuit also seeks an accounting of all sales of American flights made by Skiplagged, an accounting of all sales of American flights made by Skiplagged through any other travel agencies, statutory damages, and all actual damages that American has incurred as a result of Skiplagged’s actions. All of these things are being sought as part of the lawsuit against Skiplagged.
Even while the activity known as “skiplagging” does not technically break any laws, a number of airlines have taken measures to close the loophole because they contend that it goes against the policies they have established.
In addition, passengers who skiplag are subject to a number of different restrictions that may apply to them. For instance, if the tourist decides to check in luggage, the process will not work because luggage is normally linked with the passenger’s final destination.
In addition, this strategy is only applicable to one-way flights because, contrary to what is stated on many travel websites, skipping even a single leg of a multi-leg journey will result in the cancellation of the remaining legs of the journey. It is necessary to purchase two individual one-way tickets in the event that a traveler wishes to embark on a circular journey.
The young man, who was only 17 at the time, planned to disembark in Charlotte, North Carolina, after traveling from Gainesville, Florida, despite having New York City listed as the ultimate destination on his ticket. As a result, American Airlines decided to permanently prevent him from flying on its aircraft for the next three years.
“Despite the fact that he had never actually committed any wrongdoing, his ticket was invalidated and he was barred from AA for three years. “He never even got his boarding pass,” the father of the teenage child, Hunter Parsons, said in an interview with Insider one month ago.
“He was abandoned 1,300 kilometers from his home and left to fend for himself. He never broke any rules or breached any agreements he had made. He obtained his boarding pass by merely going to a counter and asking for it,” he continued.
American Airlines informed ticket agencies in January 2021 that it will begin monitoring “skiplag” bookings. The notice was sent out to travel agents.
The action that American is filing against Skiplagged is in response to an earlier complaint that was launched against the firm in 2014 by United Airlines and the travel agency Orbitz. In the complaint that was brought against Aktarer Zaman, the founder of Skiplagged, the defendant was accused of “intentionally and maliciously” interfering with the company’s activities and advertising “prohibited forms of travel.”
In 2015, Zaman reached a settlement with Orbitz, after which the United case against Zaman was dismissed by a judge in Chicago.