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An airline is suing a passenger that missed his flight

13 February 2019

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. Why is that possibly a big deal?

According to Forbes, Lufthansa is the third largest airline company in the world and made almost $3bn (£2.33bn) in profit in 2017.

Typically, although not in this case, the layover city is the final destination for skiplaggers. However, the passenger has no intention to ever travel to point C and instead just stops at point B as their final destination.

It can be a sneaky way to save money on fares, with direct flights sometimes costing more than stopover journeys.

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For instance, someone flying from NY to San Francisco could book a cheaper trip from NY to Lake Tahoe with a layover in San Francisco and get off there, without bothering to take the last leg of the flight. As George Hobica, founder of Airfarewatchdog told USA Today, hidden city ticketing could deprive other would-be travelers of seats they could use because you booked it instead.

Lufthansa, The Independent reported, is now pursuing payment from the passenger who it believes deliberately missed the last leg of the purchasing journey.

According to court documents, Lufthansa is seeking payment from the passenger, claiming he or she booked a flight from Oslo to Seattle via Frankfurt, the Daily Mail reports.

Airlines are unhappy with this as it can make it challenging to track passengers, it can cause delays as planes wait for flyers who never show, and that it unfairly takes advantage of the hub-and-spoke nature of airfares, which Lufthansa is particularly vulnerable to with Frankfurt and Munich airports. It is now seeking $2,385 in compensation.

An airline is suing a passenger that missed his flight