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Minister Alghabra Announced New Travel Regulations To Refund Passengers

Minister Alghabra announces the implementation of new rules regarding the necessity of refunds in the event of flight cancellations or prolonged delays beyond an air carrier’s control.

Honourable Omar Alghabra, Canada’s Minister of Transportation, announced today the new rules the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) is implementing. It is to safeguard Canadians’ interests when they air travel. 

He says that passengers have rights, and those rights must be honoured. Therefore, the government implemented the Air Passenger Protection Regulations in 2019 to ensure that passengers’ rights are upheld throughout their journey. 

“With travel volumes continuing to increase, I am very pleased to see that the Canadian Transportation Agency’s new Regulations Amending the Air Passenger Protection Regulations are now in force.”

Minister explained that new regulations that amend Canada’s current Air Passenger Protection Regulations will apply to all flights starting today. 

These include flights that are cancelled or experience a significant delay due to events beyond an air carrier’s control, such as severe weather or a pandemic, where the carrier can’t complete the passenger’s journey within a reasonable amount of time.

According to the Minister, the COVID-19 pandemic exposed a gap in Canada’s passenger protection framework, with flights being postponed or cancelled due to circumstances beyond an airline’s control and when carriers could not rebook passengers within a reasonable time, like a global pandemic. This gap will be closed by these new regulations.

The new rules offer clarity about timing, cost coverage, payment method, and deadlines to reimburse travellers during circumstances. These regulations were created to be fair and reasonable to the passengers and also to not place an excessive financial burden on air carriers, which could lead to increased travel expenses. 

Further, the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) will enforce the new regulations, the nation’s independent, quasi-judicial tribunal and regulator of the national transportation system. Through Budget 2022, the government provided the CTA with $11 million in additional resources to ensure they can fulfill their mandate.

The Minister concluded his statement by saying, given the number of Canadians travelling; it’s imperative to protect their rights. To keep travellers moving, the government will collaborate with aviation sector members. 

“We will continue to protect the interests of passengers when travel doesn’t go according to plan,” said Minister Alghabra.

Source: Transport Canada

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