Air Travel and Airline Passenger Rights FAQ
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What about tarmac delays? Do airlines have to let passengers off of stranded planes?
7. What about tarmac delays? Do airlines have to let passengers off of stranded planes?
It depends. Recent changes to U.S. Department of Transportation rules set limits on the amount of time airlines can keep passengers on board a delayed domestic flight. These regulations also spell out what airlines must provide to passengers during long delays -- i.e. water, food, and access to toilet facilities -- in order to make conditions as comfortable as possible.
Learn more in Nolo's article Tarmac Delays and Airline Passenger Rights.