Filing a Complaint About an Airline

If you are dissatisfied with your experience with airline, you should send a written complaint. Learn more.

Send a written complaint if you are dissatisfied. If the airline does not live up to its promise, or if you feel you have been treated unfairly by the airline, it is important for you to send a written complaint (by letter or e-mail) to the Aviation Consumer Protection Division (ACPD), the federal agency that keeps track of air travel problems experienced by consumers.

The ACPD has a special complaint form for you to use.

Please send a copy of your complaint to the airline’s CEO and to FARE.

Your written complaint should include the following:

  • Your name, address, and contact information
  • The name of the airline
  • The flight number, flight date, and origin and destination cities
  • If possible, a copy of your airline ticket or online reservation
  • A description of the alleged discrimination
  • A description of any contact with the airline’s complaint resolution official (CRO). Airlines generally have at least one CRO available at each airport who has the authority to resolve complaints on behalf of the airline. CROs generally come into play if a passenger feels he or she is the victim of discrimination while at the airport (for example, not being allowed to board the plane on account of a severe, life-threatening peanut allergy). Although it is a good idea to contact the airline CRO while at the airport, it is not necessary in order to file your written complaint with the ACPD.

By law, airlines must respond to all complaints of alleged disability discrimination within 30 days. However, if the incident occurred more than 45 days ago, airlines are not required to respond.