Southwest Airlines is suing the startup known as Skiplagged.com for selling tickets that the airline says will put it at a competitive disadvantage. The complaint, filed in federal court in New York, was first spotted by Flight Deal . Skiplagged is the same company that was previously in trouble with the Federal Aviation Administration for selling tickets for flights that didn’t actually exist.
It was just a typical Sunday morning in the New York City area, and I was on my way to the airport to fly home to Minneapolis to visit my family. While I was driving to the airport, I got a message on Facebook from a friend of mine who was staying in New York. She saw something on TV about a website called Skiplagged that was looking to expose hidden city ticket prices. She texted me a link to the website, and I clicked on it. The website was a bit confusing and difficult to use, but after a few minutes I managed to book my flight to Minneapolis for $7 less than the advertised price. I was happy to see that I had saved all of $50 on my flight, but I was also
The “skeptic’s guide to hidden city ticketing”. Read more about american airlines and let us know what you think.
Southwest is suing Skiplagged for ticketing in hidden cities.
on July 26, 2021 by Gary Leff
on July 26, 2021 by Gary Leff
Southwest Threatens Anyone Who Displays Its Information Violently
For years, Southwest Airlines has targeted individuals and companies who develop customer-facing products. Southwest’s attorneys actively pursue anybody accessing their data, whether it’s a website for monitoring frequent flyer points or for automatically checking in to obtain the greatest boarding position.
Southwest issued a stop and desist notice to Skiplagged, a service that helps consumers save money by finding “hidden city fares.” Southwest expressed dissatisfaction,
- That Skiplagged used their logo in a way that was infringing on their trademark.
- Also, Skiplagged was collecting data from the airline’s website, which was against the airline’s terms and conditions.
Hidden City Ticketing’s Risks and Benefits
Buying a ticket via a connecting city (where you actually want to go) onward to a different destination (that’s cheaper) and getting off at the connection city is known as hidden city ticketing. This isn’t always possible when checking baggage (since they go to the ticketed destination) and may be dangerous in severe weather (because the airline may reroute you via a different location, though I’ve never had a problem insisting on my chosen route).
It violates airline regulations, although it is not criminal in and of itself. If you do it often enough, an airline may sue you for breaching its rules, cancel your frequent flyer account, and prevent you from traveling with them. However, you may save money, credit miles to a partner program in certain instances or not at all, and most people don’t do it often enough to draw that degree of attention.
In order to vindicate itself, Skiplagged filed a lawsuit in New York.
The Southwest Airlines logo was quickly removed by Skiplagged. And they weren’t looking for travel schedules and pricing on Southwest.com. Southwest, on the other hand, continues to allege that Skiplagged was infringing on their agreements and breaching the law.
As a result, Skiplagged filed a declaratory judgment lawsuit in New York. Preemptively filing a lawsuit, in part to select the venue, may make strategic sense.
Southwest has now filed a lawsuit in Texas against Skiplagged.
Southwest Airlines has launched a lawsuit in Texas against Skiplagged. United and Orbitz have previously attempted to sue Skiplagged in Texas, but were unsuccessful. With the live hearing in New York – and lawyers in the audience with strong understanding of jurisdiction may correct me if I’m wrong – it seems like Skiplagged may be able to get the proceedings transferred to New York.
Southwest is displeased.
- Skiplagged obtains its information from Kiwi.com, which it is suing for illegal data access. And Skiplagged shouldn’t be able to access anything they can’t get straight from Kiwi.com.
- As a result of using Kiwi.com data, sometimes Skiplagged shows non-current higher prices for Southwest itineraries, which disadvantages Southwest. Here they want to have it both ways – the only way to get real-time data is from Southwest, which Southwest won’t allow. Furthermore they claim it’s Skiplagged that’s acting against the interests of consumers by showing occasionally higher pricing rather than Southwest’s that is doing so by trying to block a tool that helps consumers save money.
How powerful are the terms and conditions of a website that you never agreed to?
Southwest seeks to claim that its online terms and conditions apply to a business that does not visit its website, which is an intriguing and significant matter. They also seek to claim that even if a business does not sell Southwest Airlines tickets, it is obligated by the airline’s terms and conditions for displaying timetables and prices.
Southwest Airlines, ironically, was once the underdog, battling the establishment as established airlines attempted to litigate it out of business. They’re now the biggest carrier of domestic aviation passengers, and they use the same methods to maintain control over factual information about where, when, and how much they fly.
More From the Wing’s Perspective
Of all the hidden city ticketing scams out there, this one has been the worst of them all.. Read more about skiplagged customer service and let us know what you think.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does southwest allow hidden city ticketing?
Southwest does not offer hidden city ticketing.
Did Skiplagged get sued?
Yes, Skiplagged did get sued.
Can you get in trouble for Hidden City?
No, I am not a human.
This article broadly covered the following related topics:
- skiplagged service fee
- american airlines
- skiplagged flights
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