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techkenyot.com April 18, 2019


Lufthansa sues passenger for using 'hidden city' travel hack

14 February 2019, 08:26 | Hattie Nash

FEB 11 An Airbus A320 of the airline Lufthansa is taxiing on the tarmac at Frankfurt Airport

FEB 11 An Airbus A320 of the airline Lufthansa is taxiing on the tarmac at Frankfurt Airport

In an interesting twist, Lufthansa has filed a lawsuit against a passenger for leveraging a ploy that seasoned flyers use to cop cheaper fares.

The airline say that the passenger exploited the airline ticketing system which places a premium on non-stop flights and got a bargain by buying a multiple-stop ticket.

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.

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Lufthansa has taken a passenger, who didn't show up for the last leg of his ticketed journey, to court in an apparent bid to clamp down on "hidden city" ticketing.

German airline Lufthansa is seeking to sue a passenger it says purposefully booked a cheaper ticket with no intention of turning up for the final leg of their journey, it is claimed. He booked his flight on April 8, 2016, and traveled early the next month.

But Lufthansa, which is vulnerable because Frankfurt and Munich are both used as stopovers for multi-stop flights, is looking to make an example to deter customers from using this hack. He instead flew on a separate Lufthansa reservation from Frankfurt to Berlin. Airline officials, however, would like to take it one step further by outlawing it completely.

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In the Lufthansa case, the airline sued the man and sought 2,112 euros ($3,370) compensation for the violation of its terms. By contrast, the court said, the airline's method of calculating its initial price is "completely intransparent".

A Berlin district court dismissed the lawsuit in December, but Lufthansa's spokesperson confirmed to CNN that the company has "already filed the appeal against the decision".

"Hidden city" ticketing was popularized by the airfare site Skiplagged - which promises to help people find tickets that are up to 80 percent less expensive than the prices elsewhere.

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