Allegiant Fined for Scorching Cabins During Tarmac Delays
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
You get what you pay for, and with Allegiant Air, that’s taken to the extreme. The ultra-low-cost carrier is being punished by the US Department of Transportation (DOT) for routine instances of uncomfortable temperatures on board its aircraft.
The DOT has fined Allegiant $225,000 after it found that the airline “failed to provide passengers a comfortable cabin temperature” on 10 different occasions where aircraft were delayed on the tarmac during 2016 and 2017. This is the second fine in six months for Allegiant after the DOT slapped the airline with a $250,000 fee for violating consumer protection rules.
Even worse, most of the airports where the incidents occurred were in high-temperature regions during summer months, including Las Vegas and El Paso, Texas. Allegiant said passengers on the flights in question were subject to outdoor temperatures north of 110 degrees. Its use of portable air conditioning carts and other tools to supplement the aircraft’s internal air conditioning system apparently failed to keep aircraft cabins at reasonable temperatures.
“In one of these instances, Allegiant did not provide food and water to passengers in a timely manner or announce to passengers that they had an opportunity to deplane, as required by DOT rules,” the DOT said in a statement.
According to USA Today, the government “based its findings on passenger complaints, crewmember statements, temperature readings, reported medical incidents, operational considerations such as the use of external cooling units or air carts during the delays and decisions to deplane passengers.”
In April, CBS’ “60 Minutes” aired a report on Allegiant that detailed similar incidents on planes that even included smoke-filled cabins and cases where the airline forced passengers to stay on board during uncomfortable or dangerous circumstances.
It’s unclear whether the “60 Minutes” investigation, which was critical about the DOT’s lack of discipline on Allegiant’s issues, had anything to do with the issuance of the fines.
The airline defended its decisions as “sensible” because of customers’ desire to get to their destination as quickly as possible. Allegiant says it will change its training procedures to better avoid temperature issues and noted that its soon-to-come all-Airbus fleet can better cool cabins than its older MD-80 aircraft.
In the DOT’s April fine, the agency said Allegiant “failed to provide passengers with disabilities adequate and timely assistance in moving within airport terminals, and did not adequately respond to complaints filed by passengers with disabilities. In addition, Allegiant failed to provide timely responses to consumer complaints and failed to make prompt refunds to consumers when they were due.”
Welcome to The Points Guy!
WELCOME OFFER: 80,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,650
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,000 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Plus earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
- Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 80,000 points are worth $1,000 toward travel.
- With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories.
- Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
- Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
- Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.