Feds urge airlines to end bumping of passengers before law takes effect


Published on May 19, 2017

MONTREAL — The federal transport minister is urging the country's airlines to voluntarily stop removing passengers from full flights against their will before its legislation banning the practice comes into force, which is expected next year.

Marc Garneau says he called on airline executives at a closed-door meeting Friday to immediately follow the spirit of his proposed passenger bill of rights by ending involuntary bumping.

Garneau says he also asked them to end the practice of charging parents a fee in order to sit next to their children.

The bill introduced this week is part of a package of amendments to the Canada Transportation Act that also raises the cap on foreign ownership in airlines and requires railways to install voice and video recorders in locomotives.

The new rules would also set minimum levels of compensation for people who voluntarily agree to be bumped from a flight.

It would also force airlines to establish clear standards of treatment and compensation for circumstances such as lost or damaged luggage, delays while sitting on the tarmac and other non-weather related issues.

Garneau also urged the travel industry to get ready for the changes by preparing to update their websites, technologies and internal policies.

The Canadian Press