Air Canada ordered to boost bumping payout on overbooked domestic flights

The Canadian Press
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MONTREAL — Air Canada has been ordered to boost the compensation paid to passengers it bumps from overbooked domestic flights.

The Canadian Transportation Agency ruled that the existing practice of paying $100 cash or $200 travel voucher is unreasonable in cases that are not due to operational and safety reasons.

It has given the airline 30 days to submit new compensation guidelines.

The agency sided with Gabor Lukacs, a former University of Manitoba math professor, who has challenged several airline industry practices.

He suggested that passengers be compensated between $200 and $800 depending on the length of delay.

The agency said the airline must choose between this model and the one used in the United States, which pays up to US$1,300 under certain circumstances.

It ruled that Air Canada’s 12-year-old bumping payout rate doesn’t reflect the current price of airline tickets, accommodation and other incidental expenses.

The ruling doesn’t affect WestJet Airlines (TSX:WJA) because it doesn’t overbook flights.

Air Canada (TSX:AC.B) declined comment because it say it is “currently in consultation” on this topic.

Organizations: Air Canada, Canadian Transportation Agency, TSX University of Manitoba WestJet Airlines

Geographic location: MONTREAL, United States

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Recent comments

  • roy
    May 28, 2013 - 20:16

    I think the airline should have to pay passengers they overbook a minimum of $1000.00. I have gone through this experience where i call and was told i was confirmed on a flight only to arrive after being taken there an hours drive and dropped because i called and was told i was confirmed, When i checked in i was told i was confirmed but on the waiting list. My ride had left to drive home an hour away and i was left waiting in line to get on the plane not knowing if i would as luck had it i got on but a family of 4 going home for their parents funeral did not because of overbooking. They like me called and was told they were confirmed. There is no compensation that could have eased their pain. Its criminal to do this sort of thing and payment could not be high enough, if they had known they could booked on West Jet. Overbooking should be discontinued under severe fine to the company and compensation of not less than $1000.00 to anyone who are overbooked even if it is by mistake.

  • Joey Crawley
    May 28, 2013 - 19:13

    Can they leve Air Canada alone they are a bussiness. If people were not idiots they would not book on a flight that was already full. Two many morons in the world today. Its full of loosers

    • Foghorn Leghorn
      May 29, 2013 - 09:01

      @ Joey - I take it you don't fly much. It is Air Canada who decides to over book the flights not the customer. You basically have no way of knowing until you get to the airport to board your flight. Morons & Losers ????

    • Paul
      May 29, 2013 - 14:57

      Well,Joey,maybe you are one of them (idiots,morons,losers)...I booked my flight,paid for it, went to the airport on time,waited in a line-up for an hour and when it was only five of us left,we were told,that the flight is now full...when I asked,how it is possible that they sold MORE TICKETS THAN THEY HAD SEATS on the plane,I was told by an AIR CANADA REP. :"First come,first served " !... I find Air Canada cabin crew always wonderful...but the company has some very awful policies when it comes to customer service...