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Fri, Jul 19, 2019

Minister Garneau Comments On Phase 1 Of New Air Passenger Protection Regulations

Provisions Cover Communication, Tarmac Delays, Denied Boarding, Lost And Damaged Luggage, And Transporting Musical Instruments

The Honorable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport (pictured), has issued a statement to mark the coming into effect of Phase 1 of the new Air Passenger Protection Regulations, which cover a variety of issues identified by Canadian airline passengers.

"As Canada's Minister of Transport, I am pleased to see the first phase of the Air Passenger Protection Regulations are now in effect. With input from air travellers and the air industry, we have created a world-leading approach to air passenger rights that is clear, consistent, transparent and fair.

"Starting [Monday], airlines will be required to:

  • Communicate information to passengers in a simple, clear way  about their rights and recourses, and provide regular updates in the event of flight delays or cancellations;
  • Provide compensation of up to $2,400 for denial of boarding for reasons within the airlines' control;
  • Ensure passengers receive prescribed standards of treatment during all tarmac delays and allow them to leave the airplane, when it's safe to do so, if a tarmac delay lasts for over three hours and there's no prospect of an imminent take-off;
  • Provide compensation for lost or damaged baggage of up to $2,100 and a refund of any baggage fees; and
  • Set clear conditions regarding the transportation of musical instruments as checked or carry-on baggage.

"Phase 2, related to flight delays, cancellations and seating children in proximity of a parent or guardian, will come into effect on December 15, 2019.

"I am proud to say that these regulations will apply to all airlines flying to, from, and within Canada, and that airlines will be required to follow these regulations or they could face penalties of up to $25,000 per incident of non-compliance. The new regulations also take into account the realities of small and northern air carriers, as well as ultra-low cost carriers, with requirements adjusted accordingly.

"Today is a historic day for Canadian travellers. Our government believes that hardworking Canadians deserve to be treated fairly when they travel. That is why we created a world-leading approach to air passenger rights, one that is predictable and fair for passengers, while ensuring our air carriers remain strong and competitive. Today, after a long and thorough consultation process, I am proud to say these new regulations achieve that balance and give air travellers the rights and treatment they pay for and deserve."

(Source: Transport Canada news release. Image from file)

FMI: www.tc.gc.ca

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