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MEPs urge Commission to draft common rules for carry-on luggage

The excessive restrictions and arbitrary charges that some airlines impose on carry-on luggage must end, said MEPs in a debate with Commissioner De Gucht on Thursday. Most speakers urged the Commission to include a reasonable hand language allowance rule in the coming revision of air passenger rights legislation, which is to be tabled before the summer.

"We must protect consumers from the abusive commercial practices that airlines use to generate extra income", said Georges Bach (EPP, LU).

"Passengers need clear information beforehand. Hand luggage should be checked at the check-in counter, not at the gate", to allow carry-on purchases in the airport, added Said El Khadraoui (S&D, BE).

Commissioner De Gucht admitted that hand luggage restrictions vary greatly but said "the Commission sees this as the reflection of diversity in a very competitive market", adding that he was not in favour of more regulatory action.

"Citizens have lost a lot of confidence in the EU - here's a chance to do something to restore it", replied Wolf Klinz (ALDE, DE)

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