Are you a consumer who is frustrated with an airline’s response towards your complaint? Consider forwarding it to MAVCOM.
What is MAVCOM?
MAVCOM is the acronym for the Malaysian Aviation Commission. It is an independent body set up under the Malaysian Aviation Commission Act 2015 to regulate economic and commercial matters relating to civil aviation. Its objective is to commercially promote the civil aviation industry through consumer-oriented mechanisms and ensure a resilient civil aviation industry which in turn supports the nation’s economic growth.
– Regulate economic matters relating to the civil aviation industry;
– Provide a mechanism for protection of consumers;
– Provide a mechanism for dispute resolution between aviation industry players;
– Administer and manage air traffic rights; and
– Advise the Government, administer and manage routes under public service obligations.
Malaysian Aviation Consumer Protection Code 2016
MAVCOM introduced the Malaysian Aviation Consumer Protection Code 2016 (“the MACPC”) which governs the rights of air travellers. All aviation service providers of any airline operating in Malaysia and all airports are required by law to comply with the MACPC.
The MACPC consists of provisions regarding:
– Minimum service levels and the standards of performance for airlines and aerodrome operators,
– Passengers’ rights, and
– Consumer complaints.
For example, paragraph 12(1) MACPC states that if a flight is cancelled, the operating airline must offer compensation to its passengers. As specified in the First Schedule of the MACPC, passengers shall be offered the choice of compensation between the following options:
a. Reimbursement within 30 days of the full cost of the ticket; or
b. Re-routing, under comparable transport conditions, to the passenger’s final destination of the earliest opportunity or at a later date at the passenger’s convenience, subject to availability of seats, at no extra charge.
Besides, paragraph 13(1) MACPC states that if a passenger’s baggage does not arrive on the same flight as the passenger, the operating airline is liable to compensate any damage occasioned by the delay and the passenger to whom the baggage belongs shall be compensated unless the operating airline took all reasonable measures to avoid the delay or it was impossible to take such measures.
If a passenger chooses to make a complaint towards the airline, paragraph 17(4) MACPC states that the airline shall acknowledge receipt of said complaint lodged within 24 hours from the receipt of the complaint and shall send a substantive written response to the complainant and provide a resolution to the complaint within 30 days from the receipt of the complaint.
Consumer Redress Mechanism
If the airline does not resolve the issue or give a satisfactory answer, passengers are encouraged to forward the complaints to MAVCOM together with the relevant documentation. This may be done through its online Complaints Management System by filling an e-Form in the MAVCOM website. Other alternative ways to complaint are through emails, telephone calls or walk-in to the office managed by MAVCOM. All the complaints will be investigated by MAVCOM, thus assisting consumers and aviation service providers to solve the disputes.
Any Recent Developments?
MAVCOM has announced that it will be enhancing the MACPC based on consumer feedback and key learnings during the pandemic to better protect the consumer. According to the executive chairman Datuk Seri Saripuddin Kasim, “The enhancements include increased consumer protection in the case of unprecedented circumstances, as well as new provisions to regulate travel passes, along with the restructuring or liquidation of airlines and its impact on passengers.”