c. Use of U.S.-Flag Air Carriers. 
  • 1. The Comptroller General of the United States 
  • (U.S.) by Decision B-138942 of June 17, 1975, as amended March 31, 1981, provided guidelines for implementation of Section 5 of the International Air Transportation Fair Competitive Practices Act of 1974 [49 U.S.C. 1517]. 
  • 2. Any air transportation to, from, between, or within a country other than the U.S. of persons or property, the expense of which will be assisted by NSF funding, must be performed by a U.S.-flag air carrier if service provided by such a carrier is available. 
  • 3. For the purposes of this requirement, U.S.-flag air carrier service is considered available even though: 
  • (a) comparable or a different kind of service can be provided at less cost by a foreign-flag air carrier; 
  • (b) foreign-flag air carrier service is preferred by, or is more convenient for, NSF or traveler; or 
  • (c) service by a foreign-flag air carrier can be paid for in excess foreign currency. 
  • 4. The following rules apply unless their application would result in the first or last leg of travel from or to the U.S. being performed by a foreign-flag air carrier: 
  • (a) A U.S.-flag air carrier shall be used to destination or, in the absence of direct or through service, to the farthest interchange point on a usually traveled route. 
  • (b) If a U.S.-flag air carrier does not serve an origin or interchange point, a foreign-flag air carrier shall be used only to the nearest interchange point on a usually traveled route to connect with a U.S. flag air carrier. 
    1. If a U.S.-flag air carrier involuntarily reroutes the traveler via a foreign-flag air carrier, the foreign-flag air carrier may be used notwithstanding the availability of alternative U.S.-flag air carrier service. d. Use of Foreign-Flag Air Carriers. 
    1. Travel To and From the U.S. Use of a foreign-flag air carrier is permissible if: 
    (A) the airport abroad is the traveler's origin or destination airport, and use of U.S.-flag air carrier service would extend the time in a travel status by at least 24 hours more than travel by a foreign-flag air carrier; or 

    (b) the airport abroad is an interchange point, and use of U.S.-flag air carrier service would require the traveler to wait six hours or more to make connections at that point, or would extend the time in a travel status by at least six hours more than travel by a foreign-flag air carrier. 

    2. Travel Between Points Outside the U.S. Use of a foreign-flag air carrier is permissible if: 

    (a) travel by a foreign-flag air carrier would eliminate two or more aircraft changes en route; 

    (b) travel by a U.S.-flag air carrier would extend the time in a travel status by at least six hours more than travel by a foreign-flag air carrier; or 

    (c) the travel is not part of the trip to or from the U.S., and use of a U.S.-flag air carrier would extend the time in a travel status by at least six hours more than travel by a foreign-flag air carrier. 

    3. Short Distance Travel. For all short distance travel, regardless of origin and destination, use of a foreign-flag air carrier is permissible if the elapsed travel time on a scheduled flight from origin to destination airport by a foreign-flag air carrier is three hours or less and service by a U.S.-flag air carrier would double the travel time.