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German carrier Lufthansa sues no-show flier over ‘skiplagging’ fare dodge

German carrier Lufthansa sues no-show flier over ‘skiplagging’ fare dodge

A court decision in the airline's favour won't exactly outlaw the practice in the eyes of the courts, however Lufthansa hopes to dissuade passengers from using the hidden city trick by making an example out of one single, solitary traveller.

If a passenger does not show up for the first leg of a flight (say, on a trip from Amsterdam-London-Dubai, which is listed at a cheaper price than London-Dubai) the airline may automatically cancel the booking, which can not later be reinstated.

Other airlines, such as United and Iberia, have taken action against travellers over the issue in the past and it is believed that more may follow, particularly in light of the popularity of online ticket-buying websites that can scour databases to find similar anomalies. However, the wily passenger used all legs of the outbound flight, but opted out of the Frankfurt to Oslo return flight and, instead, flew on an unconnected Lufthansa reservation from Frankfurt to Berlin, Germany.

The airline - which makes billions in profit every year - is seeking about C$3,150 in compensation from the passenger.

For example, someone who wants to travel to Chicago may book a flight from NY to Los Angeles with a layover in Chicago, if that flight is less expensive than direct flights to Chicago.

Network carriers such as Lufthansa set their prices based on charging less for more flights.




Hidden city ticketing frustrates airlines, and Lufthansa reportedly sought around $2,385 in damages from the passenger, claiming he violated the airline's terms of service.

Lufthansa, the German national airline, announced it is suing a passenger for allegedly missing a leg of his journey on objective. However Lufthansa has since been granted permission to appeal the ruling.

"As this is a running court case, we do not comment on this case at this stage", a Lufthansa spokesperson told Simple Flying.

The case was thrown out in 2015 after the judge in the Northern District Court of IL said the court didn't have jurisdiction over the case because Zaman didn't live or do business in that city.

In addition, the practice could bring legal trouble, Skyscanner says, adding, "Even more likely, if you do this regularly, some airlines will kick you out of their rewards program".


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