A look at compensation, accommodation and who gets it if flights are disrupted IG News

Irshadgul News report,

Kathleen Lucero wasn’t too worried when her first flight was canceled.

She and her son had spent a week with family in Calgary and were scheduled to fly with Porter Airlines to Toronto and Ottawa to get home to Gatineau, Que. On 26 February.

Lucero said her itinerary had to be rescheduled due to flight crew shortages, and the pair were rebooked for February 28. March 1 again. Then March 2.

“It was canceled three times, rebooked three times,” she said last week.

Cancellations and delays are generally an expected part of air travel.

But dozens like Lucero sent CBC Calgary details of their travel woes, including a story WestJet told passengers of an hour-long canceled flight. eight hour bus ride Instead of last week to your destination.

Tom Oommen of the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) has heard a lot of stories, but he had a new one.

“I personally haven’t heard of this happening before,” he said. “But we only hear about things that passengers bring to us as complaints.”

There is a crowd of people wearing jackets in front of a big bus.
WestJet passengers line up to board a bus from Calgary to Regina on February 26. (Gilbert Proulx / Twitter)

Lucero’s position was also unusual.

She ended up calling the airline and booking a flight from Calgary to Toronto Pearson Airport on March 1. He then traveled approximately 25 kilometers southeast to Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport for a flight to Ottawa.

Since her first flight was delayed, she missed the second flight. So, she booked another hotel room, boarded a flight the next morning, and came home on March 2.

Lucero presented the expenses she incurred — lodging and meals — to the airline, but she wasn’t sure whether would be approved.

A plane is flying.
Porter Airlines started flights between Calgary and Toronto last month. (Bruce Reeve/CBC)

Brad Cicero with Porter Airlines responded to the situation in a statement saying they were sorry to hear about the unusually long delay, adding that they would cover all reasonable expenses for accommodation and meals, as well as in Toronto. Will also do ground transfer.

He said his automated booking system would move the entire itinerary – or two, connecting flights – if just one of them was cancelled, so the system would have missed possible ways to shorten his trip. He said passengers should look online to see what other options are available or call the airline for help.

Additional compensation will be available to Lucero for the total flight delay, Cicero said. Lucero has to submit the claim only through its website.

For others who find themselves in unusual travel situations, CBC Calgary asked people familiar with the airline industry to break down some of the rules airlines follow.

why flights are canceled

air passenger safety regulations (APPR) – Standards governing airlines operating in Canada – Group flight disruptions three different categories: within airline control, conditions within airline control but necessary for safety, such as unforeseen maintenance problems or safety decisions made by the pilot, and outside airline control.

Compensation varies depending on which category your flight falls in. As per the APPR, the airline has to inform the passengers the reason for the flight being disrupted.

Sylvie de Bellefeuille, a lawyer with OptionConsumers, a nonprofit that promotes consumer rights, said situations within airline control cost the airline the most.

De Bellefeuille said, “One thing people need to be aware of is compensation, people have to ask the airline for it. So that’s the first step.”

A suitcase and a backpack lie on the floor at an airport check-in counter.
The reason for the cancellation, or the length of the delay, may determine how much compensation an airline is expected to pay a passenger. (Kyle Bucks/CBC)

At a minimum, the CTA’s Oommen said the regulations require airlines to meet a customer’s itinerary.

“When a flight is canceled or delayed for more than three hours once, an airline has to offer alternative travel arrangements in the same class of service. Using a reasonable route, they must The next available flight operated by them or an airline with which they have a commercial agreement,” he said.

Airlines are sometimes required to offer a rebooked flight with a competing airline or to another airport if they cannot complete a passenger’s journey. within reasonable time.

If passengers are not satisfied with the alternate travel arrangements, there are circumstances where they can seek a refund or even additional compensation.

compensation is different

in some situationsPassengers are entitled to a refund.

For any disruptions other than those beyond the control of the airline, passengers may seek a refund if the proposed alternate flight does not meet their requirements or is not required to travel due to a delay.

Sometimes, additional compensation is offered to passengers if the delay or cancellation is under the control of the airline. Those amounts — ranging from $125 to $1,000 — depend on the airline (whether it’s major or minor) and how long it takes the passenger to reach their final destination.

A graphic showing the amount of compensation due for a certain period of flight delay.

According to John Gradek, faculty lecturer in aviation management at McGill University, crew shortages are usually under the airline’s control.

“The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) recently denied a passenger’s appeal based on this clarification from a carrier as a valid reason for claiming non-payment of compensation,” Gradek said.

“In other words, the carrier is still on the hook to pay compensation.”

In Lucero’s case, if a passenger has to wait overnight, airlines are required to offer accommodations and transportation to those accommodations.

If you are unhappy with your response

Passengers have one year to file a claim for compensation with the airline that operated their disrupted flight, and the airline has 30 days to respond.

If a passenger is not happy with the response, or the airline has not responded, they can file a complaint with the CTA.

But be prepared to wait.

The agency had more than 40,000 complaints pending as of February 28, and the current waiting time between a case being submitted and reviewed is more than 18 months.

They are investigating solutions to wait times, and hope to be able to create efficiencies in the future, a CTA spokesperson said in a statement.

Gradek said, “You can always go to court. Small claims court will take care of that.” “It’s going to be a little more complicated, but probably quicker.”

About 97 percent of complaints made to CTAs are resolved informally, while only about 3 percent go through a formal adjudication process.


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