Thursday,  April 25, 2019  12:21 am

Canadian government moves on air passenger protection rights


Canadian government moves on air passenger protection rights

The Government of Canada is taking major steps to providing Canadians with new air passenger protection rights, the Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport, announced today (Dec. 17).

"Our government is pleased with the progress made in strengthening air passenger rights for Canadians, and that Canadians have had – and continue to have – a chance to shape these rules. An airline ticket is a contract for service, and it imposes obligations on both the airline and on the traveller. Once finalized, these regulations will create a more predictable and balanced approach that will benefit both,”  Garneau said today in a press conference.

The Canadian Transportation Agency's proposed air passenger protection regulations will be published in the Canada Gazette Part I this Saturday, December 22, 2018, for a final 60-day public comment period.

The Transportation Modernization Act mandated the agency to develop regulations for air travellers that would be clear, consistent, transparent and fair, stated a release.

As of this Saturday, Canadians are welcome to visit Canada Gazette Part I to comment on Transport Canada's proposed regulations on the collection of air travel performance data from air service providers.

Data will be collected in areas such as on-time performance and security wait times, from service providers including airport authorities, the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) and NAV Canada.

The aim is to provide a detailed picture of the air travel experience so the Canadian Government can determine the effectiveness of the new air passenger protection regulations.

One measure The Canadian Transportation Agency is proposing is to implement air passenger payments for delays, cancellations and damaged bags.

Air passengers who are bumped from overbooked flights or who are forced to sit for long periods of time during delays could receive up to $2,400 under the proposed regulations. 

The compensation plan will use a sliding scale with larger airlines and longer delays requiring bigger compensation payments, the Canadian Press reports.

The proposed regulation would also force airlines to seat children under age 14 next to their parents instead of having them pay an extra fee to select their own seats.

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