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Airlines face crack down on use of ‘exploitative’ algorithm that splits up families on flights


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https://www.independent.co.uk/travel/news-and-advice/airline-flights-pay-extra-to-sit-together-split-up-family-algorithm-minister-a8640771.html

Airlines face crack down on use of ‘exploitative’ algorithm that splits up families on flights
 

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Algorithms used by airlines to split up those travelling together unless they pay more to sit next to each other have been called “exploitative” by a government minister.

Speaking to a parliamentary communications committee, Digital Minister Margot James described the software as “a very cynical, exploitative means… to hoodwink the general public”.

She added: “Some airlines have set an algorithm to identify passengers of the same surname travelling together.

“They’ve had the temerity to split the passengers up, and when the family want to travel together they are charged more.”

It’s an issue that will be looked at by the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation, launched by the government this week to identify and address areas where clearer guidelines and regulation are needed in how data is used.

Passengers first started noticing they were being split up from their party if they didn’t pay more for allocated seating in June 2017, with Ryanair most commonly associated with the practice.

However, Europe’s biggest airline never admitted to changing the way seating was allocated, insisting there was no change and saying that those who don’t pay to choose a seat are “randomly” assigned one.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has been investigating the issue of paid-for seat allocation for more than a year.

Its latest research, released in October 2018, stated that the likelihood of passengers being split up if they didn’t pay to sit together varied wildly between airlines.

In a survey of 4,296 people who had flown as part of a group, the CAA found that travellers were most likely to be split from their party when flying with Ryanair – 35 per cent of those surveyed were separated having opted not to pay more for allocated seating. 

Flybe and TUI Airways were the least likely to break up groups, with just 12 per cent of people separated.

As The Independent reported earlier this year, splitting up passengers could hinder safe and rapid evacuations, according to a report produced by the Royal Aeronautical Society Flight Operations Group (FOG).

 

 

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"As The Independent reported earlier this year, splitting up passengers could hinder safe and rapid evacuations, according to a report produced by the Royal Aeronautical Society Flight Operations Group (FOG)."

As if the airlines really cared about "OMG - where's Timmy" during an emergency evacuation.

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SkyMan
36 minutes ago, Bama said:

: “Some airlines have set an algorithm to identify passengers of the same surname travelling together.

I wonder how they figured that out? 

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1 hour ago, lamoe said:

"As The Independent reported earlier this year, splitting up passengers could hinder safe and rapid evacuations, according to a report produced by the Royal Aeronautical Society Flight Operations Group (FOG)."

As if the airlines really cared about "OMG - where's Timmy" during an emergency evacuation.

We are cattle to the airlines and not people. They try to fit as many of us into the smallest space that the safety rules allow. It reminds me of the old pictures of slave ships where they laid out the "cargo" in the most efficient way so they can cram more people into the smallest space. Disgusting!

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1 hour ago, Topper said:

We are cattle to the airlines and not people. They try to fit as many of us into the smallest space that the safety rules allow. It reminds me of the old pictures of slave ships where they laid out the "cargo" in the most efficient way so they can cram more people into the smallest space. Disgusting!

I am just happy that I can get a return ticket from denmark to cebu for less than 1000 usd

if you want more space buy yourself a business class ticket

Edited by Woolf
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SkyMan
1 hour ago, Woolf said:

I am just happy that I can get a return ticket from denmark to cebu for less than 1000 usd

if you want more space buy yourself a business class ticket

That's the other side of the coin.  Yeah, you want the cheapest ticket possible and to give you that the airline has to cram more people together.  If they gave a reasonable space to each passenger the price would have to go up and people would migrate to another airline for cheap seats and be crammed together.  So if you're crammed in a tiny seat for 14 hours, you really only have yourself to blame.

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20 hours ago, Woolf said:

I am just happy that I can get a return ticket from denmark to cebu for less than 1000 usd

if you want more space buy yourself a business class ticket

I'd love to. Maybe you can give me the $1000.00 extra it costs. I would be very happy to join you in business class.

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Why do you think I have extra 1000 usd to spend

I do not 

That is why I am in monkey class

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lolhahaha

How long until the first airline stands people up nut to butt and gives them a metal pole to hang onto? They could cram people in with a long broom handle with a board attached to the end of it like on trains in Tokyo.

I imagine you could fly around the world and back for 250 on one of those lol.

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Salty Dog

Ryanair is proposing a 'fat tax' for obese customers.

I think this is a great idea and I'd do it a bit like the hand luggage size test.

Have a chair with arms at the check-in that passengers have to sit in. When they get up, if the chair is still stuck to their ass, they pay the tax.

The rest of the queue behind them can all cheer and clap and shout "Pay up, you fat ass!" Making the normally dreary check-in experience a more light-hearted affair...

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SkyMan
1 hour ago, Salty Dog said:

Ryanair is proposing a 'fat tax' for obese customers.

I think this is a great idea and I'd do it a bit like the hand luggage size test.

Have a chair with arms at the check-in that passengers have to sit in. When they get up, if the chair is still stuck to their ass, they pay the tax.

The rest of the queue behind them can all cheer and clap and shout "Pay up, you fat ass!" Making the normally dreary check-in experience a more light-hearted affair...

Have you ever seen anyone use the carry on test? Or had their oversized (or over quantity) denied other then a few times when you board from the tarmac and they check them as they board?

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1 hour ago, Salty Dog said:

Ryanair is proposing a 'fat tax' for obese customers.

 

If I had to pay for being overweight, I'd want something in return. Like a bigger seat.

 

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Then we've got Philippine Airlines who don't allow you to select aisle/window seats online because those are chargeable, so you have to call a call centre who don't answer.. 

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oztony
On 11/27/2018 at 10:14 PM, Topper said:

I'd love to. Maybe you can give me the $1000.00 extra it costs. I would be very happy to join you in business class.

I have only flown business class once , must have been an overbooked flight ...at check in one of the staff walked up and down the queue , stopped at lucky me and said nice shirt ...would you like a free upgrade to business class ....me ...ah well I suppose then ...if it is going to help you guys out....:)

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