I believe the no-show policy is a way of extra revenue for the airline, which should seriously be outlawed. In multiple rulings by European courts, I specifically mention a recent one in Spain (https://www.expansion.com/empresas/tran ... b46d2.html
) that has made it illegal for Spanish operators to use it. It started with a case of someone having bought the VLC-MAD-EZE route that decided just to take the MAD-EZE and whose whole ticket had been cancelled.
Why? What difference does it make for the airline, what is the perjury, that this person didn't fly the VLC-MAD route? At the end of the day, it happened something good to Iberia. One less passenger to feed, to carry, less airport taxes to pay, less fuel consumed in the airline, and eventually one person less in the possible waiting list.
I'd been furious if it happens. And be sure, airlines don't like showing this high on their rules. Like, if you read the fine print, maybe it is there, but, again, is in the position 16 out of 30.
In contractual law we learned: put the most important clauses first, and leave the bullshit for the last part. So when I write a contract, if it was an transport one, I'd put these clauses first. E.G. If the name of the reservation doesn't match perfectly the one of the passenger, NO-GO. If you show up after the check in closed, NO-GO, in this ticket luggage is not included, and hand luggage is strictly limited to X. If you have more and you don't want to pay, NO-GO. You won't be feeded in this aircraft, because we are too mean and cheap to offer everyone a sandwich and a coke (free of charge, as it should be).
BUT: If we want to delay the flight: bad luck, get some miles to, eventually, after paying lots of money, buy a new ticket in our airline that will probably fail again. Also: if we loose your luggage, we don't accept any responsibility and we'll give you never more than 400U$S as a compensation after very long negotiations. It doesn't matter the suitcase itself was twice that price, and you ruined it because you handle baggage as if it was the waste of the aircraft toilets.
Since the early 2000s, (maybe after 9/11) airlines have been imposing every day more and more restrictions, because, as you have already guessed, we are just hostages of these companies. They say: you paid a Basic Economy Ticket. What the heck does it mean? I paid a ticket that was, say, 500$ and there was a guy who was luckier, or bought it earlier, and paid 50$, and another who bought it last minute and paid 1000$. It happens all the time. And we are seating exactly in the same crappy seat, of a close to 30 year old MD80, on a weird midwestern US city. Now, it seems the guy who paid 50$ has contractually less rights than the one who paid 1500$? Would seem fine. But is not always the case. Because they are so many rules and they are so unclear, I'm never sure if i'll get miles, how many miles, or if are they any good before I buy a ticket.
So, recently, I bought a ticket (a seriously expensive one) using the Air France website. I read the whole contract and there was no information about miles. I checked their website, again nothing. I contacted them on twitter, nothing. I used all my knowledge, but zero. At the end of the trip, I got an email informing I had gotten say 150 miles for a over 18 hour flight. That was because I had paid fare N (who knows what N means?).
Make it ICE clear, give all the information, put it there, don't hide it, don't make it a mystery. Make it easy to understand, as are now the food labels concerning fat and cholesterol and sugar. And let people decide. If it is worth the trouble, or if it is worth paying maybe 10$ more to instead of flying N flying O, which will give you more miles, or will allow you to change for no extra cost the flight. Make it simpler. People is every day more angry with the airlines. And government is doing great looking the other side...