U.S. Airlines Is Suing A 22-Year-Old, But Why?

January 12th, 2015 | by

United Airlines and Orbitz have recently decided to sue a 22-year-old computer whiz, the reason? He launched a site to help people buy cheap plane tickets.

Aktarer Zaman founded the website last year in an attempt to help travelers find cheap flights by using what is known as “hidden city” ticketing. The strategy works by booking a flight that has a layover at your actual destination. As long as travelers don’t have a checked bag and only buy a one-way ticket, they’re golden…and airlines aren’t happy.

United Airlines and Orbitz have filed a civil lawsuit against the 22-year-old, claiming that Skiplagged is “unfair competition” and they allege that the site promotes “strictly prohibited” travel. The companies want to recoup $75,000 in lost revenue from Zaman and his site.

Zaman does note that he knew a lawsuit was inevitable, but points out that there’ nothing illegal about the site. He has also said that that he makes no profit from the website and all he’s doing is helping travelers get the best prices by exposing an “inefficiency” in airline prices.

A United spokesman said, “This practice violates our fare rules and we are taking action to stop it to help protect the vast majority of customers who buy legitimate tickets.”

As you may have guessed, Zaman does not have the funds to fight off United Airlines and Orbitz alone. So he has started asking for donations to help fund the site’s legal team. As of this writing, the campaign has already received over $65,000.

Check out the GoFundMe page if you’re interested in donating.

Source: CNN Money