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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of April 16, 2014

Title 14: Aeronautics and Space
PART 380—PUBLIC CHARTERS


Subpart C—Requirements Applicable to Charter Operators


Contents
§380.20   Relief from the Statute.
§§380.21-380.23   [Reserved]
§380.24   Suspension of exemption authority.
§380.25   Prospectus filing and related requirements.
§380.26   Discrimination.
§380.27   Methods of competition.
§380.28   Charter prospectus.
§380.29   Charter contract.
§380.30   Solicitation materials.
§380.31   General requirements for operator-participant contracts.
§380.32   Specific requirements for operator-participant contracts.
§380.33   Major changes in itinerary or price; refunds.
§380.33a   Operator's option plan.
§380.34   Security and depository agreements.
§380.34a   Substitution of direct air carrier's security or depository agreement.
§380.35   Disbursements from depository account.
§380.36   Record retention.

§380.20   Relief from the Statute.

(a) To the extent necessary to permit them to organize and arrange public charters, charter operators and foreign charter operators are hereby relieved from the following provisions of Subtitle VII of Title 49 of the U.S. Code, only if and so long as they comply with the provisions and the conditions imposed by this part:

(1) Chapter 411.

(2) Chapter 413.

(3) Chapter 415.

(4) Chapter 419.

(5) If foreign charter operators receive interstate air transportation rights, any other provision of the statute that would otherwise prohibit them from organizing and arranging Public Charters in interstate air transportation.

(b) A charter operator who is a citizen of the United States shall not be subject to the following requirements with respect to Public Charters that originate in a foreign country: §§380.25, 380.28, and 380.30 through 380.35.

§§380.21-380.23   [Reserved]

§380.24   Suspension of exemption authority.

The Department reserves the power to deny the exemption authority of any charter operator, without hearing, if it finds that such action is necessary in the public interest or is otherwise necessary in order to protect the rights of the traveling public.

§380.25   Prospectus filing and related requirements.

A charter operator may organize and operate a Public Charter only in accordance with this part, and subject to the following conditions:

(a) No charter operator shall operate, sell, receive money from any prospective participant for, or offer to sell or otherwise advertise a charter or series of charters until the Office of Aviation Analysis, Special Authorities Division, has accepted a Public Charter prospectus as described in §380.28.

(b) If within 10 days after the filing the Department notifies the charter operator that it has rejected the prospectus for noncompliance with this part, the prohibitions set forth in paragraph (a) of this section shall continue until the Department advises that it has accepted the prospectus.

(c) The following amendments to a filed prospectus may be made:

(1) The addition or cancellation of any flight;

(2) A change in any flight, date, origin city or destination city; and

(3) A change in or addition of any direct air carrier, securer, or depository bank.

(d) The charter operator shall amend the prospectus to reflect any change described in paragraph (c) of this section. The amendment shall be filed in the manner and form used for the original prospectus. It shall become effective upon filing unless the operator is otherwise notified.

(e) The charter operator shall notify the depository bank (if any) and the securer of any change described in paragraph (c) of this section not later than when filing a prospectus amendment to reflect the change. If the securer is unable to adjust the security agreement as required by the change, the Office of Aviation Analysis, Special Authorities Division shall be advised of this fact within 2 business days.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under Control Number 2106-0005)

§380.26   Discrimination.

No charter operator shall make, give, or cause any undue or unreasonable preference or advantage to any particular person, port, locality, or description of traffic in air transportation in any respect whatsoever, or subject any particular person, port, locality, or description of traffic in air transportation to any unjust discrimination or any undue or unreasonable prejudice or disadvantage in any respect whatsoever.

§380.27   Methods of competition.

No charter operator shall engage in unfair or deceptive practices or unfair methods of competition in air transportation or the sale thereof.

§380.28   Charter prospectus.

(a) The charter prospectus shall include an original and two copies of the following:

(1) From the charter operator and the direct air carrier:

(i) The proposed flight schedule, listing the origin and destination cities, dates, type of aircraft, number of seats, and charter price for each flight;

(ii) The tour itinerary (if any) including hotels (name and length of stay at each), and other ground accommodations and services; and

(iii) A statement that they have entered into a charter contract that covers the proposed flight schedule, that the contract complies with all applicable Department regulations, and that a copy of the schedule has been sent to the depository bank (if any) and the operator's securer. The schedule shall be identified with a number assigned by the charter operator that does not duplicate any schedule numbers assigned by the operator to other proposed flight schedules. The proposed flight schedule, tour itinerary (if any), and statement shall be filed on OST Form 4532.

(2)(i) From the charter operator and the securer, a statement:

(A) That they have entered into a security agreement covering the proposed flight schedule that complies with §380.34, including the amount of the coverage, the number assigned to it by the securer, and the amount of any outstanding claims against it, and

(B) That the securer has received a copy of the proposed flight schedule. The statement shall identify the proposed flight schedule by the schedule number assigned by the charter operator in accordance with paragraph (a) of this section. If there are any outstanding claims against the agreement, the charter operator and securer shall also state that they have executed a rider or amendment increasing the coverage by the amount of the claims, or that the securer will separately pay any claims for which it may be liable without impairing the agreement or reducing the amount of its coverage.

(ii) These statements shall be filed an OST Form 4533.

(3) If a depository agreement is used, a statement from the charter operator, the direct air carrier, and the depository bank:

(i) That they have entered into a depository agreement covering the proposed flight schedule that complies with §380.34, and

(ii) That the bank has received a copy of the proposed flight schedule by the schedule number assigned by the charter operator in accordance with paragraph (a)(1) of this section. This statement shall be filed on OST Form 4534.

(b) Each of the statements described in paragraph (a) of this section shall also include the names and addresses of the parties to it, and the originals shall be signed by those parties.

(c) The prospectus may cover a series of charters performed by one charter operator if the departure of the last charter is not more than one year after the departure of the first.

(d) If the prospectus covers a series of charters and the air transportation will be performed by more than one direct air carrier, the prospectus shall include separate statements in accordance with paragraphs (a)(1) and (a)(3) of this section to cover the flights that will be performed by each direct carrier.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under Control Number 2106-0005)

§380.29   Charter contract.

The charter contract between the charter operator or foreign charter operator and the direct air carrier shall evidence a binding commitment on the part of the carrier to furnish the air transportation required for the trip or trips covered by the contract.

§380.30   Solicitation materials.

(a) All solicitation materials for a Public Charter shall include the name of the charter operator and the name of the direct air carrier.

(b) Any solicitation material that states a price per passenger shall also include one of the following:

(1) A statement referring to the operator-participant contract for further information about conditions applicable to the charter; or

(2) The full text of the operator-participant contract.

(c) Except as set forth in §380.33a for operator's option plan contracts, if the charter prospectus names alternative dates or cities, any solicitation material that states a price per passenger shall also state that the actual dates or cities have not yet been selected, if that is the case.

(d) Any solicitation material that names a hotel but does not name every hotel named in the operator-participant contract shall also state that substitutions may be made.

(e) In any solicitation material from a direct air carrier, indirect air carrier, or an agent of either, for a charter, charter tour (i.e., a combination of air transportation and ground accommodations), or a charter tour component (e.g., a hotel stay), any price stated for such charter, tour, or component shall be the entire price to be paid by the participants to the air carrier, or agent, for such charter, tour, or component.

§380.31   General requirements for operator-participant contracts.

(a) Except for telephone sales for which payment is made by credit card as described in paragraph (b) of this section, the charter operator shall not accept payment from or on behalf of a prospective participant unless the participant has agreed to the conditions of the charter by signing an operator-participant contract as described in §380.32. If a member of a group that will travel together pays for the group, that member may sign the contract on behalf of the group.

(b) For telephone sales only, the charter operator may accept payment by credit card without the participant having first signed an operator-participant contract provided that the charter operator first advises the customer:

(1) That he or she has the right to receive the operator-participant contract before making a booking;

(2) That the operator-participant contract will be mailed to the participant within 24 hours of accepting payment by credit card; and

(3) That the operator-participant contract must be signed, and the signed portion returned to the operator, before travel.

(4) A full refund must be made of any amounts charged to a credit card for any participant who cancels before the operator-participant contract is signed.

(c) The contract form may include a space that participants may check to authorize the charter operator to retain their money while attempting to make other arrangements for them if there is no space available on the flight or on specific alternative flights they have requested.

(d) If there is no space available on the flight or specific alternative flights requested by the participant the operator shall return all the participant's money within 7 days after receiving it unless the participant, in accordance with paragraph (c) of this section, has authorized the operator to retain the payments while the operator attempts to make other arrangements for the participant. If the operator retains the payments while attempting to make other arrangements for the participant, it shall notify the participant of the fact within 7 days after receiving the payments, but in no event later than the departure. For the purpose of the time periods in this paragraph, receipt of money by a travel agent on behalf of a charter operator will not be considered as receipt by the operator.

(e) Except as set forth in §380.33a for operator's option plan contracts, the operator-participant contract shall not specify alternative dates for the outbound or return flights, or alternative origin or destination cities for any flight leg.

(f) The contract form shall be printed in 7-point or larger type. The statements required by paragraph (a), (f), (h), (l), (r), (s), and (x) of §380.32 shall be printed so as to contrast with the rest of the contract by the use of bold-faced type, capital letters, or a type size that is at least 50 percent larger than that used for the rest of the contract.

(g) The contract form shall include a space that participants may check to indicate that they wish to be furnished details of trip cancellation, health, and accident insurance.

(h) The contract form shall be designed so as to enable participants to retain a copy of the general terms and conditions after signing it. The specific information supplied by participants (such as choices of dates, cities, or other options) need not be retainable.

§380.32   Specific requirements for operator-participant contracts.

Contracts between charter operators and charter participants shall state:

(a) The name and complete mailing address of the charter operator;

(b) The name of the direct air carrier, the dollar amounts of that carrier's liability limitations for participant's baggage, the type and capacity of the aircraft to be used for the flight, and the conditions governing aircraft-equipment substitutions;

(c) The dates of the outbound and return flights;

(d) The origin and destination cities of each flight leg;

(e) The amount and schedule of payments;

(f) If a depository agreement as provided in §380.34(b) is used: That all checks, money orders, and credit card drafts must be made payable to the escrow account at the depository bank (identifying bank)1 or, when the charter is sold to the participant by a retail travel agent, checks and money orders may be made payable to the agent, who must in turn make his check payable to the escrow account at the depository bank;

1If the credit card merchant account is separate from the depository account, it must be used solely as a conduit, i.e., all credit card payments toward Public Charter trips must be immediately remitted to the depository account in full, without holdback, or retention of any portion of the participant's payment. If the depository bank is not the credit card merchant bank, the Department must be satisfied that there are adequate procedural safeguards for the protection of participants' payments.

(g) The tour itinerary, if any, including the name and location of the hotels, length of stay at each, and other ground accommodations and services that are part of the tour;

(h) That the charter operator may not cancel the charter less than 10 days before the scheduled departure date, except for circumstances that make it physically impossible to perform the charter tip;

(i) That if a charter is canceled 10 or more days before the scheduled departure date, the operator will notify the participant in writing within 7 days after the cancellation, but in any event at least 10 days before the scheduled departure;

(j) That is a charter is canceled less than 10 days before departure (i.e., for circumstances that make it physically impossible to perform the charter trip), the operator will get the message to the participant as soon as possible;

(k) That if the charter is canceled, a refund will be made to the participant within 14 days after the cancellation;

(l) The right to refunds if the participant changes plans is limited;

(m) The right to refunds if the participant changes plans, including

(1) The right to a full refund, for sales made by credit card, until an operator-participant contract is signed; and

(2) That any participant who wishes to cancel will receive a full refund (less any applicable administrative fee, not to exceed $25) upon providing a substitute participant to the charter operator or its sales agent, or upon being substituted for by a participant found by the charter operator;

(n) The procedure for obtaining the refunds described in paragraph (m) of this section, including that they will be made within 14 days after the cancellation or substitution;

(o) The meaning of “major change”, as set forth in §380.33(a);

(p) That if the charter operator knows of a major change 10 or more days before scheduled departure, the operator will notify the participant of the change within 7 days after first knowing of it, but in any event at least 10 days before scheduled departure;

(q) That is the operator first knows of a major change less than 10 days before scheduled departure, the operator will get the message to the participant as soon as possible;

(r) That within 7 days after receiving a pre-departure notification of a major change but in no event later than departure, the participant may cancel, and that a full refund will be made to the participant within 14 days after canceling;

(s) That upon a post-departure notification of a major change, the participant may reject the substituted hotel or the changed date, origin, or destination of a flight leg and be sent, within 14 days after the return date named in the contract, a refund of the portion of his payment allocable to the hotel accommodations or air transportation not provided;

(t) That the participants rights and remedies set forth in the contract, including the procedures for major changes, shall be in addition to any other rights or remedies available under applicable law, although the operator may condition a refund on the participant's waiver of additional remedies;

(u) That trip cancellation, health, and accident insurance is available and that the operator will furnish details of the insurance to participants who check the space provided for this purpose on the contract form;

(v) The name and address of the surety company or bank issuing the security agreement; and that unless the charter participant files a claim with the charter operator or, if he is unavailable, with the securer, within 60 days after termination of the charter, the securer shall be released from all liability under the security agreement to that participant. Termination means the date of arrival (or in the case of a canceled charter, the intended date or arrival) of the return flight. If there is no return flight in a participant's itinerary, termination means the date or intended date of departure of the last flight in the participant's itinerary;

(w) For international flights only: That additional restrictions may be imposed on the flight by the foreign government involved, and that if landing rights are denied by a foreign government the flight will be canceled with a full refund to the participant. This statement need not be included in the contract if—

(1) The prospectus includes a certification by the charter operator and the direct air carrier that landing rights have been obtained from all the foreign governments involved, and

(2) All the foreign governments involved have adopted country-of-origin rules for charterworthiness;

(x) That the charter operator is the principal and is responsible to the participants for all services and accommodations offered in connection with the charter. However, the contract may expressly provide that the charter operator, unless negligent, is not responsible for personal injury or property damage caused by any direct air carrier, hotel or other supplier of services in connection with the charter.

§380.33   Major changes in itinerary or price; refunds.

(a) For the purposes of this section, “major change” means any of the following:

(1) A change in the departure or return date shown in the operator-participant contract, (or, if the contract states alternative dates, the date designated to the participant by the charter operator in accordance with §380.33a(b)), unless the change results from a flight delay. In any event, however, a date change that the operator knows of more than 2 days before the scheduled flight date, and any delay of more than 48 hours, will be considered a major change.

(2) A change in the origin or destination city shown in the operator-participant contract for any flight leg (or, if the contract states alternative cities, the city designated to the participant by the operator in accordance with §380.33a(b)), unless the change affects only the order in which cities named in a tour package are visited.

(3) A substitution of any hotel that is not named in the operator-participant contract; and

(4) A price increase to the participant that occurs 10 or more days before departure and results in an aggregate price increase of more than 10 percent.

(b) The charter operator shall not increase the price to any participant less than 10 days before departure.

(c) The charter operator shall notify all participants of major changes, as required by the operator-participant contracts. This notification shall include the participants' rights to refunds required to be described in the operator-participant contract. The operator shall, if applicable, also notify the participants that the acceptance of a refund constitutes a waiver of their legal rights.

(d) Except as otherwise specified, notifications and refunds required by this part are considered made at the time they are mailed or sent by an equivalent method.

(e) The charter operator shall make all refunds required to be described in the operator-participant contract within the time limits set forth in paragraphs (k), (n), (r), and (s) of §380.32, as applicable.

§380.33a   Operator's option plan.

(a) For the purposes of this part, an operator's option plan contract that states alternative dates for the outbound or return flights, or alternative origin or destination cities for any flight leg.

(b) Operator's option plan contracts shall state, in addition to the information required by §380.32, that the selection of the actual dates or cities, as applicable, is at the charter operator's option and will not entitle the participant to a refund, and that the operator will notify the participant of the actual dates or cities at least 10 days before the earliest of any alternative dates for the outbound flight.

(c) Contract forms for all operator's option plan contracts shall be labeled “OPERATOR'S OPTION PLAN” in bold-faced capital letters at least 14 inch high. The statement required by paragraph (b) of this section and the statement of alternative dates (§380.32(c)) or alternative cities (§380.32(d)), as applicable, shall be printed so as to contrast with the rest of the contract, as set forth in §380.31(f).

(d) Any solicitation material that states a price per passenger for an operator's option plan contract shall clearly and conspicuously—

(1) Identify that price as being for the operator's option plan,

(2) Name all the possible dates or cities, as applicable, and

(3) State that the selection of the actual dates or cities is at the charter operator's option.

(e) Charter operators and their agents shall not misrepresent to prospective participants, orally, in solicitation materials, or otherwise, the probability that any particular city or date will be selected from among the alternatives named in an operator's option plan contract.

(f) The charter operator shall notify all participants with operator's option plan contracts of the actual dates or cities, as applicable, as required by contracts.

§380.34   Security and depository agreements.

(a) Except as provided in paragraph (b) of this section, the charter operator or foreign charter operator shall furnish a security agreement in an amount for not less than the charter price for the air transportation, if only air transportation is involved, or, if the charter involves land accommodations in addition to air transportation, a security agreement in one of the following amounts dependent upon the length of the charter or series of charters:

(1) For a charter or series of charters of 14 days or less, security in an amount of not less than the charter price for the air transportation to be furnished in connection with such charter or series of charters;

(2) For a charter or series of charters of more than 14 days but less than 28 days security in an amount of not less than twice the charter price; and

(3) For a charter or series of charters of 28 days or more, security in an amount of not less than three times the charter price: Provided, however, That the liability of the securer to any charter participant shall not exceed amounts paid by that participant to the charter operator with respect to the charter.

(b) The direct air carrier and the charter operator or foreign charter operator may elect, in lieu of furnishing a security agreement as provided under paragraph (a) of this section, to comply with the requirements of paragraphs (b)(1) and (b)(2) of this section, as follows:

(1) The charter operator shall furnish a security agreement in an amount of at least $10,000 times the number of flights, except that the amount need not be more than $200,000. The liability of the securer to any charter participant shall not exceed the amount paid by the participant to the charter operator for that charter.

(2) The direct air carrier and charter operator or foreign charter operator shall enter into an agreement with a designated bank, the terms of which shall provide that all payments by charter participants paid to charter operators or foreign charter operators and their retail travel agents shall be deposited with and maintained by the bank subject to the following conditions:

(i) On sales made to charter participants by charter operators or foreign charter operators the participant shall pay by check, money order, or credit card draft payable to the bank;2 on sales made to charter participants by retail travel agents, the retail travel agent may deduct his commission and remit the balance to the designated bank by check, money order, or electronic transfer: Provided, That the travel agent agrees in writing with the charter operator or foreign charter operator that if the charter is canceled the travel agent shall remit to the bank the full amount of the commission previously deducted or received within 10 days after receipt of notification of cancellation of the charter; except for the credit card company's usual commission (not to exceed 3 percent), the charter operator shall not permit any portion of a charter participant's payments by credit cared to be “held back” by the credit card merchant bank;3

2See also n.1, supra.

3“Holdback” is an amount in excess of usual commissions that a credit card merchant bank sometimes retains to cover potential charge-backs or other charges.

(ii) The bank shall pay the direct air carrier the charter price for the transportation not earlier than 60 days (including day of departure) prior to the scheduled day of departure of the originating or returning flight, upon certification of the departure date by the air carrier: Provided, That, in the case of a round trip charter contract to be performed by one carrier, the total round trip charter price shall be paid to the carrier not earlier than 60 days prior to the scheduled day of departure of the originating flight;

(iii) The bank shall reimburse the charter operator or foreign charter operator for refunds made by the latter to the charter participant upon written notification from the charter operator or foreign charter operator;

(iv) If the charter operator, foreign charter operator or the direct air carrier notifies the bank that a charter has been canceled, the bank shall make applicable refunds directly to the charter participants;

(v) After the charter price has been paid in full to the direct air carrier, the bank shall pay funds from the account directly to the hotels, sightseeing enterprises, or other persons or companies furnishing ground accommodations and services, if any, in connection with the charter or series of charters upon presentation to the bank of vendors' bills and upon certification by the charter operator or foreign charter operator of the amounts payable for such ground accommodations and services and the person or companies to whom payment is to be made: Provided, however, That the total amounts paid by the bank pursuant to paragraphs (b)(2) (ii) and (v) of this section shall not exceed either the total cost of the air transportation, or 80 percent of the total deposits received by the bank less any refunds made to charter participants pursuant to paragraphs (b)(2) (ii) and (iv) of this section, whichever is greater;

(vi) As used in this section, the term “bank” means a bank insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation;

(vii) The bank shall maintain a separate accounting for each charter group;

(viii) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, the amount of total cash deposits required to be maintained in the depository account of the bank may be reduced by one or both of the following: The amount of the security agreement in the form prescribed in this section in excess of the minimum coverage required by paragraph (b)(1) of this section; an escrow with the designated bank of Federal, State, or municipal bonds or other securities, consisting of certificates of deposit issued by banks having a stated policy of redeeming such certificates before maturity at the request of the holder (subject only to such interest penalties or other conditions as may be required by law), or negotiable securities which are publicly traded on a securities exchange, all such securities to be made payable to the escrow account: Provided, That such other securities shall be substituted in an amount no greater than 80 percent of the total market value of the escrow account at the time of such substitution: And provided, further, That should the market value of such other securities subsequently decrease, from time to time, then additional cash or securities qualified for investment hereunder shall promptly be added to the escrow account, in an amount equal to the amount of such decreased value; and

(ix) Except as provided in paragraph (b)(2)(i), (iii), (iv), (v), and (viii) of this section, the bank shall not pay out any funds from the account prior to 2 banking days after completion of each charter, when the balance in the account shall be paid the charter operator or foreign charter operator, upon certification of the completion date by the direct air carrier: Provided, however, That if the Charter involves air transportation only and the bank has paid the direct air carrier(s) the charter price for the originating flight, and the returning flight if any, and has paid all refunds due to participants, as provided in paragraph (b)(2)(ii) and (iii), respectively, of this section, then the bank may pay the balance in the account to the charter operator upon certification by the direct air carrier performing the originating flight that such flight has in fact departed.

(c)(1) The security agreement required under paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section shall insure the financial responsibility of the charter operator or foreign charter operator and the supplying of the transportation and all other accommodations, services, and facilities in accordance with the contract between the charter operator or foreign charter operator and the charter participants.

(2) The security agreement may be either:

(i) A surety bond in the form set forth as appendix A to this part;

(ii) A surety trust agreement in the form set forth as appendix B to this part; or

(iii) An arrangement with a bank (for instance, a standby letter of credit) that provides protection of charter participants' funds equivalent to or greater than that provided by the Bond in appendix A. An arrangement that furnishes a lesser degree of protection than would be provided under the bond shall be invalid to that extent, and instead the bank, the charter operator or foreign charter operator, and the charter participants shall have the same rights and liabilities as provided under a bond in the form of appendix A. If the arrangement does not give as much protection as a bond against the risk of the charter operator's bankruptcy, the bank shall be liable in the event of bankruptcy to the same extent as if it had entered into a bond.

(3) Any agreement under paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section shall include a statement that, in the event that the other provisions of the agreement do not provide protection to charter participants comparable to that provided under a bond in the form of appendix A, the bank shall assume, for the benefit of the charter participants, all the liabilities it would have if it entered into the bond.

(4) The security agreement shall be effective on or before the date the charter prospectus is filed with the Department.

(5) The security agreement shall be specifically identified by the issuing securer with a numbering system so that the Department can identify the security agreement with the specific charter or charters to which it relates. These data may be set forth in an addendum attached to the security agreement, which addendum must be signed by the charter operator or foreign charter operator and the securer.

(6) When security is provided by a surety bond, such bond shall be issued by a bonding or surety company that is listed in Best's Insurance Reports (Fire and Casualty) with a general policyholders' rating of “A” or better. The bonding or surety company shall be one legally authorized to issue bonds of that type in the State in which the charter originates. For purposes of this section the term “State” includes any territory or possession of the United States, or the District of Columbia.

(7) When security is provided by a security agreement other than a bond, the agreement shall be issued by a national bank complying with the provisions of 12 CFR 7.7010(a), or by a State bank complying with applicable State laws that give authority to issue such agreements, and all such banks must be insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

(d) The security agreement required by this section shall provide that unless the charter participant files a claim with the charter operator or foreign charter operator, or, if it is unavailable, with the securer, within 60 days after termination of the charter, the securer shall be released from all liability under the security agreement to such charter participant. Terminations means the date of arrival (or in the case of a canceled charter, the intended date of arrival) of the return flight. If there is no return flight in a participant's itinerary, termination means the date or intended date of departure of the last flight in the participant's itinerary.

§380.34a   Substitution of direct air carrier's security or depository agreement.

(a) A direct air carrier may substitute its own security agreement and/or depository arrangements, as specified in this section, for those required of the charter operator under §380.34, but only for charter trips in which all the air transportation is provided by one direct air carrier. Charter operators are relieved from §380.34 to the extent that the direct carrier substitutes its own arrangements.

(b) The direct air carrier may substitute its security agreement for all of the arrangements required of the charter operator under §380.34 (a) or (b). Alternatively, it may substitute its depository agreement for the depository agreement required of the charter operator under §380.34(b)(2). If the direct carrier substitutes its depository agreement, it may also obtain and substitute a security agreement for the one otherwise required of the charter operator under §380.34(b)(1). If the direct carrier substitutes its depository agreement only, the charter operator must supply the security agreement required under §380.34(b)(1).

(c) If the direct carrier substitutes a security agreement for all the charter operator's requirements under §380.34, the charter operator shall include in the charter prospectus, in place of the information in §380.28(a)(2) regarding the charter operator's security agreement:

(1) A statement by the direct air carrier on OST Form 4535 that it will take responsibility for all charter participant payments (including those for ground accommodations and services) and for the fulfillment of all the charter operator's contractual and regulatory obligations to the charter participants.

(2) A statement from the direct air carrier and its securer (under §212.12 of this chapter), OST Form 4533, that they have entered into a security agreement assuring the direct air carrier's responsibilities to charter participants under this section in an unlimited amount (except that the liability of the securer with respect to any charter participant may be limited to the charter price paid by or on behalf of such participant), and that the securer has received a copy of the proposed flight schedule identified by the schedule number assigned by the charter operator under this part.

(d) A substitute depository agreement under this section shall be signed by the direct air carrier, the charter operator, and the depository bank, and shall provide, in addition to existing requirements under §212.8 of this chapter, that:

(1) Payments by or on behalf of charter participants shall be allocated to the flight accounts matching the participant's itinerary in the following way: Each account shall have allocated to it the charter cost of the participant's air transportation on that flight. The portion of each payment not intended for air transportation services shall be allocated to the account for the return flight in the participant's itinerary. If there is only one flight in the itinerary, the entire payment shall be allocated to that account.

(2) The bank shall pay funds from a flight account directly to the hotels, sightseeing enterprises, or other persons or companies furnishing ground accommodations and services, if any, in connection with the charter flight, upon presentation to the bank of vendor's bills and upon certification by the person who contracted for the ground accommodations or services of the amounts payable and the persons or companies to whom payment is to be made, except that no disbursement shall be made that would reduce the balance in the account below the charter cost of the flight.

(3) On sales made to participants by a person other than a retail travel agent, the participant shall pay by check, money order, or credit card draft payable to the bank. On sales made to participants by a retail travel agent, payments shall be made in the same manner unless the agent deducts its commission and remits the balance to the bank by check, money order, or electronic transfer. The agent may deduct its commission only if it agrees in writing with its principal (the charter operator or direct air carrier, as applicable) that, if the charter is canceled, the agent shall remit to the bank the full amount of the commission previously deducted or received within 10 days after receipt of notification of the cancellation. The depository bank shall pay refunds directly to participants according to the terms of the operator-participant contract and the terms of this part.

(e) If the direct carrier substitutes a security agreement in addition to substituting a depository agreement, the charter prospectus information must include all the information required by paragraphs (c) and (d) of this section, except for the amount of the security agreement. That agreement shall be in an amount of at least $10,000 times the number of flights, except that the amount need not be more than $200,000.

(f) A copy of the depository agreement under paragraph (d) of this section shall be filed with the Department, and it shall not be effective until approved by the Department.

(g) A copy of the security agreement under paragraph (c) or paragraph (e) of this section shall be filed with the Department. It shall insure the financial responsibility of the direct air carrier for supplying the transportation and all other accommodations, services, and facilities in accordance with the contracts between the charter operator and the charter participants. Such security agreement shall meet all the other requirements of §380.34 (c) and (d).

§380.35   Disbursements from depository account.

No charter operator or direct air carrier shall cause its agents or the depository bank to make disbursements or payments from deposits except in accordance with the provisions of this part.

§380.36   Record retention.

Every charter operator conducting a charter pursuant to this part shall comply with the applicable record-retention provisions of part 249 of this chapter.



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