B-168899, APR. 10, 1970

B-168899: Apr 10, 1970

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IS DENIED. AS AMERICAN AIR CARRIER SERVICE WAS AVAILABLE FOR FULL DIRECT ROUTE FROM NEW DELHI TO WASH. M.D.: REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 19. WHICH IS NOT ON THE DIRECT ROUTE FROM NEW DELHI TO WASHINGTON WAS FOR PERSONAL REASONS. TRAVEL FROM FRANKFURT TO MADRID AND FROM THERE TO LONDON WAS ON FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS. IN VIEW OF THE ABOVE AND SINCE THERE WAS NO INCREASE IN THE COST OF TICKETS. PROVIDE AS FOLLOWS: "134.2-2 INDIRECT TRAVEL "WHEN AIR TRAVEL IS PERFORMED VIA AN INDIRECT ROUTE FOR THE PERSONAL CONVENIENCE OF THE TRAVELER. TRAVEL BY THE INDIRECT ROUTE DOES NOT RESULT IN GREATER TOTAL USE OF FOREIGN-FLAG SERVICE THAN WOULD HAVE BEEN NECESSARY ON A DIRECT ROUTE. THE PUBLISHED AIRLINE FARES FOR THE FOREIGN CARRIER SEGMENTS ON THE DIRECT ROUTE AND ON THE INDIRECT ROUTE ACTUALLY TRAVELED WILL SERVE AS THE BASIS FOR COMPARISON. "134.6 PENALTY FOR FAILURE TO COMPLY "FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THE PROVISIONS OF SECTIONS 134.2 AND 134.3 WILL SUBJECT THE EMPLOYEE TO PERSONAL FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AS FOLLOWS: "A.IN THOSE INSTANCES WHERE TRAVELERS USE FOREIGN-FLAG AIRLINES FOR THE COMPLETE JOURNEY IN CONFLICT WITH THESE REGULATIONS.

B-168899, APR. 10, 1970

TRANSPORTATION--AIR CARRIERS--FOREIGN--AMERICAN CARRIER AVAILABILITY- PROHIBITION STATE DEPT. EMPLOYEE'S REQUEST FOR RELIEF FROM INDEBTEDNESS FOR COST OF DEPENDENTS' TRAVEL ON FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS FROM FRANKFURT TO MADRID TO LONDON, PERFORMED FOR PERSONAL CONVENIENCE IN CONNECTION WITH EMPLOYEE'S TRANSFER FROM NEW DELHI TO WASH; D.C; IS DENIED, AS AMERICAN AIR CARRIER SERVICE WAS AVAILABLE FOR FULL DIRECT ROUTE FROM NEW DELHI TO WASH; AND WHILE TRAVEL IN QUESTION INVOLVED NO ADDITIONAL COST TO GOVT; REGULATIONS SUBJECT EMPLOYEE TO PERSONAL FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR USE OF FOREIGN FLAG AIRLINE. THEREFORE GAO MAY NOT AUTHORIZE REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUCH TRAVEL.

TO CARL C. NYDELL, JR; M.D.:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 19, 1969, REQUESTING RECONSIDERATION OF THAT PORTION OF OUR SETTLEMENT HOLDING YOU INDEBTED TO THE UNITED STATES FOR THE COST OF THE TRANSPORTATION OF YOUR DEPENDENTS ON FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS BETWEEN FRANKFURT, GERMANY, AND LONDON, ENGLAND, BY WAY OF MADRID, SPAIN, IN JUNE 1968.

THE RECORD INDICATES THAT, IN CONNECTION WITH YOUR TRANSFER FROM NEW DELHI, INDIA, TO WASHINGTON, D. C; AN AMERICAN AIR CARRIER ARRANGED TRANSPORTATION FOR YOUR WIFE AND FOUR CHILDREN. YOUR FAMILY'S TRIP FROM FRANKFURT TO MADRID, WHICH IS NOT ON THE DIRECT ROUTE FROM NEW DELHI TO WASHINGTON WAS FOR PERSONAL REASONS. YOU STATE THAT DUE TO VARIOUS DELAYS EN ROUTE BEYOND YOUR FAMILY'S CONTROL, TRAVEL FROM FRANKFURT TO MADRID AND FROM THERE TO LONDON WAS ON FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS. IN VIEW OF THE ABOVE AND SINCE THERE WAS NO INCREASE IN THE COST OF TICKETS, YOU BELIEVE YOU SHOULD BE RELIEVED OF THE INDEBTEDNESS.

SECTIONS 134.2-2 AND 134.6, VOLUME 6, FOREIGN AFFAIRS MANUAL, PROVIDE AS FOLLOWS:

"134.2-2 INDIRECT TRAVEL

"WHEN AIR TRAVEL IS PERFORMED VIA AN INDIRECT ROUTE FOR THE PERSONAL CONVENIENCE OF THE TRAVELER, A FOREIGN AIRLINE CAN BE USED ONLY WHEN:

"A. AN AMERICAN-FLAG AIRLINE DOES NOT PROVIDE SERVICE; AND

"B. TRAVEL BY THE INDIRECT ROUTE DOES NOT RESULT IN GREATER TOTAL USE OF FOREIGN-FLAG SERVICE THAN WOULD HAVE BEEN NECESSARY ON A DIRECT ROUTE. FOR AUDIT PURPOSES, THE PUBLISHED AIRLINE FARES FOR THE FOREIGN CARRIER SEGMENTS ON THE DIRECT ROUTE AND ON THE INDIRECT ROUTE ACTUALLY TRAVELED WILL SERVE AS THE BASIS FOR COMPARISON.

"134.6 PENALTY FOR FAILURE TO COMPLY

"FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THE PROVISIONS OF SECTIONS 134.2 AND 134.3 WILL SUBJECT THE EMPLOYEE TO PERSONAL FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AS FOLLOWS:

"A.IN THOSE INSTANCES WHERE TRAVELERS USE FOREIGN-FLAG AIRLINES FOR THE COMPLETE JOURNEY IN CONFLICT WITH THESE REGULATIONS, THEY WILL BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR THE TOTAL DOLLAR VALUE OF THE TICKET INVOLVED.

"B. IN THOSE INSTANCES WHERE TRAVELERS USE FOREIGN-FLAG AIRLINES FOR ONE OR MORE SEGMENTS OF A JOURNEY IN CONFLICT WITH THESE REGULATIONS, THEY WILL BE HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DOLLAR VALUE OF THE PUBLISHED AIRLINE FARE APPLYING TO THE ROUTE SEGMENTS INVOLVED."

THE ABOVE REGULATIONS WERE PRESCRIBED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE AUTHORITY GRANTED TO THE SECRETARY OF STATE BY THE FOREIGN SERVICE ACT OF 1946, 22 U.S.C. 1136 AND, THEREFORE, HAVE THE FULL FORCE AND EFFECT OF STATUTE. WHERE THE REGULATIONS SUBJECT AN EMPLOYEE TO PERSONAL FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR USE OF A FOREIGN-FLAG AIRLINE ON ONE OR MORE SEGMENTS OF A JOURNEY, WE MAY NOT AUTHORIZE REIMBURSEMENT FOR SUCH TRAVEL.

IN THE INSTANT CASE THE RECORD INDICATES THAT THE AMERICAN AIR CARRIER INITIALLY ARRANGED TRANSPORTATION BY FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS OVER THE SEGMENTS INVOLVED. IN THIS CONNECTION WE HAVE OBTAINED INFORMATION WHICH INDICATES THAT TRAVEL ON AN AMERICAN AIR CARRIER FROM FRANKFURT TO LONDON WITH A STOPOVER AT MADRID COULD NOT HAVE BEEN ARRANGED. AMERICAN AIR CARRIER SERVICE IS AVAILABLE, OF COURSE, FOR THE FULL DIRECT ROUTE FROM NEW DELHI TO WASHINGTON. WE UNDERSTAND, GIVEN THE DESIRE TO STOP AT MADRID, THAT THE ROUTING ARRANGED BY THE AMERICAN AIR CARRIER HELD TRAVEL ON FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS TO A MINIMUM.

THE FACT THAT TRAVEL IS ARRANGED BY AN AMERICAN AIR CARRIER DOES NOT RELIEVE THE EMPLOYEE OF FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, AS PROVIDED BY REGULATION, FOR TRAVEL ON A FOREIGN AIR CARRIER. WHILE NO ADDITIONAL COST TO THE GOVERNMENT WAS INVOLVED, TRAVEL BY FOREIGN AIR CARRIERS UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF YOUR CASE CONTRAVENES THE UNITED STATES POLICY SET FORTH IN THE FOREIGN AFFAIRS MANUAL.

IN VIEW OF THE ABOVE WE MAY NOT MODIFY OUR SETTLEMENT SO AS TO RELIEVE YOU OF THE INDEBTEDNESS STATED THEREIN.