Airlines To Seat Children Under 12 With Parents On Flights: DGCA

DGCA has mandated airlines to seat children under 12 with at least one parent or guardian for safer flights. Ensuring family proximity enhances the travel experience and safety for young flyers
DGCA new guidelines
DGCA new guidelinesShutterstock

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has issued a directive requiring airlines to ensure that children up to 12 are seated with at least one of their parents or guardians during flights. This directive follows reported instances where children under 12 were not seated alongside their parents or guardians.

The DGCA stated, "Airlines shall ensure that children up to the age of 12 years are allocated seats with at least one of their parents/guardians, who are travelling on the same PNR, and a record of the same shall be maintained."

This directive is part of a revision to the Air Transport Circular titled "Unbundle of Services and Fees by Scheduled Airlines." Under these norms, certain services such as zero baggage, preferential seating, meals/snacks/drinks charges, and charges for the carriage of musical instruments are permitted. However, the DGCA emphasised that airlines provide these unbundled services on an "opt-in" basis and that they are not mandatory.

The statement further highlighted a provision for auto seat assignment for passengers who have yet to select any seat during web check-in before the scheduled departure. India's civil aviation market is among the world's fastest-growing, with domestic air traffic rising steadily.

DGCA new guidelines
DGCA new guidelinesShutterstock

In another development, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation has issued a directive to reduce passenger base fares of flights. The directive requires airlines to include charges for certain services in their established airfares.

According to the DGCA, many passengers may not need these services during travel. The directive aims to make the basic fare more affordable by unbundling services and associated charges. Passengers will now have the option to pay for only the services they wish to avail themselves of, as these unbundled services must be provided on an "opt-in" basis rather than an "opt-out" basis.

(With inputs from PTI and media reports)

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