OTTAWA, Aug. 29, 2013 /CNW/ - In two separate decisions released today,
the Canadian Transportation Agency ordered Air Canada and Porter
Airlines to revise certain domestic tariff provisions.
A tariff is the contract between the carrier and the passenger which
contains an air carrier's terms and conditions of carriage. Tariff
provisions are enforceable by the Agency.
"Passengers have a fundamental right to be informed about schedule
changes that affect their itinerary and ability to travel and to be
compensated or refunded in a reasonable fashion," said Geoff Hare,
Chair and CEO of the Agency. "These decisions help ensure that
consumers are protected when experiencing schedule changes while
travelling with Air Canada and Porter."
In its Decision No 204-C-A-2013 issued in May 2013, the Agency acknowledged that Air Canada should have
the flexibility to determine when an aircraft should be substituted for
operational and safety reasons.
The Agency gave the carrier the opportunity to demonstrate how these
conditions could be met in its tariff. As indicated in today's final
decision, as Air Canada failed to do so, the Agency determined that the
carrier has to provide boarding compensation to affected passengers.
The Agency has also concluded that the regime proposed by the
complainant is the preferable option to apply as it strikes a
reasonable balance between the consumers' interest and Air Canada's
Air Canada now has to revise its denied boarding compensation regime by
September 18, 2013, to reflect the following compensation provisions:
Less than 2 hour delay = 50% of the base amount
Between 2 and less than 6 hour delay = 100% of the base amount
6 hour delay or more = 200% of the base amount
The base amount is established as $400
This compensation applies solely to involuntary denied boarding, and
does not relate to situations where a passenger volunteers to be denied
boarding for whatever compensation Air Canada wishes to offer.
In a separate decision, the Agency dealt with Porter's responsibility
for schedules and operations, as well as the reasonableness and clarity
of its domestic tariff. In response to the complaint, Porter proposed
certain tariff revisions, which the Agency found still lacked clarity
and some were found to be unreasonable.
The Agency finds that it is unreasonable for Porter to refuse to refund
the fare paid by a passenger because of its cancellation of a flight.
The Agency found that, consistent with Decision No. 16-C-A-2013, Porter
should make reasonable efforts to provide passengers with accurate
information on schedule changes and the reasons for them.
Porter now has until September 30, 2013, to revise its tariff provisions
for domestic flights as per the findings in the decision.
About the Canadian Transportation Agency
The Agency is responsible for, among other things, resolving complaints
related to an air carrier's terms and conditions of carriage set out in
The Agency has the authority to address the terms and conditions of
carriage for domestic traffic on complaint and for international
traffic on complaint and its own motion. In these contexts, the Agency
has the power to suspend, disallow or substitute the terms and
conditions of carriage.
Agency complaints are treated on a case-by-case basis. Each decision is
based solely on the individual merits of the case. In the course of the
process, the Agency assesses relevant facts and circumstances, by way
of written submissions, weighs the various factors and makes a decision
based on law and evidence presented by the parties involved in the
SOURCE: Canadian Transportation Agency
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