Canadian Government Enacts New Air Passenger Protection Regulations

by Daine Taylor
Canadian Government Enacts New Air Passenger Protection Regulations

The new law requires airlines to meet certain obligations towards Canadian passengers. Photo: JHVEPhoto / 

The Canadian Transportation Agency recently passed new Air Passenger Protection Regulations, which lay out rules designed to ensure both airlines and their passengers are informed of what they are entitled to if things go wrong.

“This is an important day for the millions of Canadians who take flights to see family and friends, visit new places, do business, or seek medical treatment,” said Scott Streiner, chairman and CEO of the Canadian Transportation Agency.

The law requires airlines to meet certain obligations towards passengers, such as:

  • Communicating information on passengers’ rights, and providing recourses and regular updates in the event of flight delays and cancellations.
  • Providing compensation of up to $2,400 for bumping a passenger for reasons within the airlines’ control.
  • Ensuring passengers receive prescribed standards of treatment during all tarmac delays, and allowing them to leave the airplane, when it is safe to do so, if a tarmac delay lasts for over three hours and there is no prospect of an imminent take-off.
  • Providing compensation for lost or damaged baggage of up to $2,100, and a refund of any baggage fees.
  • Setting clear policies for transporting luggage like musical instruments.

In order to help passengers navigate these new regulations, the CTA has launched an online service to function as a one-stop-shop for them to learn about their rights, file a travel complaint, and find tips for hassle-free travel.

Even more regulations are expected to come into effect beginning Dec. 15, which will define the airlines’ obligations towards passengers during flight disruptions and when seating children.

“The Air Passenger Protection Regulations establish clear, fair, balanced obligations that will help ensure fair treatment when people travel by air – whether they’re flying from, to or within this vast country,” said Steiner.

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