U.S. House Passes Spanberger’s Bipartisan Bill to Ban Airlines from Charging Extra Fees to Seat Families Together

The “Fly Together Act” Would Prohibit Airlines from Tacking on Additional Fees for Parents to Sit with Kids 13 & Under

Congresswoman: “As a Mom of Three Kids, I Understand the Stress that Comes with Air Travel — and Extra Fees Don’t Make Things Any Easier”

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A bipartisan majority of the U.S. House of Representatives today voted to pass U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger’s bipartisan bill to make sure children can be seated next to their parents on flights for no extra fees.

Spanberger’s Fly Together Act would direct the U.S. Secretary of Transportation to issue a rule requiring airlines to seat young children with their family members on flights to the greatest extent practicable — and at no additional cost within the same class of service. Specifically, this rule would direct airlines to seat children under 14 years old next to a family member at no extra charge.

The U.S. House passed Spanberger’s bill as part of the bipartisan Securing Growth and Robust Leadership in American Aviation Act — legislation to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

“As a mom of three kids, I understand the stress that comes with air travel — and extra fees don’t make things any easier. That’s why I’m proud to lead this bipartisan effort to block airlines from taking advantage of American families at the airport,” said Spanberger. “I want to thank my colleagues in the U.S. House for understanding the importance of providing peace of mind to parents, improving the travel experience for young kids, and stopping some of the senseless nickel-and-diming in the airline industry.”

Additionally, Spanberger’s Fly Together Act explicitly prohibits the imposition of any changes in the seating or boarding policy of an air carrier that has an open or flexible seating policy in place that generally allows adjacent family seating — such as Southwest Airlines.

Spanberger is leading the Fly Together Act alongside U.S. Representative Ann Wagner (R-MO-02).

BACKGROUND

In 2016, Congress passed an earlier FAA reauthorization bill, which included language that required the U.S. Secretary of Transportation to establish a policy — if appropriate — requiring airlines to seat young children with their family members on flights without charging them additional fees. However, families across the country continue to be separated from their children during air travel.

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