The Fly America Act Should Allow More Agency Discretion in Authorizing Use of Foreign-Flag Air Carriers To Conduct Business Overseas

LCD-78-235: Published: Oct 31, 1978. Publicly Released: Oct 31, 1978.

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Under the provisions of the Fly America Act, government travelers are required to use American-flag air carriers for official business overseas. The act was intended to counterbalance foreign governments' restrictive routing practices in relation to use of their national-flag carriers and to increase use of American-flag carriers.

Although there were few statistics available to measure the use of American-flag carriers versus foreign-flag carriers, indications are that federal agencies and their employees are making a special effort to use American-flag carriers. However, the Fly America Act has resulted in additional costs to federal agencies in terms of increased administrative costs, higher air fares, and more employee per diem expenses. It has impinged on the agencies' ability to complete their missions as expeditiously as possible and to exercise flexibility in the manner in which they perform their work. The most significant effect of compliance with the Fly America Act is the high financial risk to the individual traveler.

Matter for Congressional Consideration

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Matter: Congress should amend the Fly America Act to provide greater flexibility in its application to flights between points outside the United States; such an amendment would reserve to American-flag carriers the lucrative long-distance travel so that costs of complying with the act would be reasonable in proportion to the financial benefit to those carriers. The amendment should also reduce the traveler's burden and risk of scheduling travel to a more reasonable proportion.


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