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CTA Reminds Air Canada to Properly Apply Denied Boarding Policy

Dec. 19, 2007, Ottawa, Ont. - The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) today reminded Air Canada to properly apply its denied boarding policy.


December 19, 2007
By Carey Fredericks

Dec. 19, 2007, Ottawa, Ont. – The Canadian Transportation Agency today
reminded Air Canada to properly apply its denied boarding policy, especially
the requirement to seek volunteers to relinquish their seats before
involuntarily denying boarding to passengers.
       
The Canadian Transportation Agency is of the opinion that the need to
seek volunteers before denying boarding involuntarily is a key element of the
denied boarding policy: "There may be confusion among Air Canada front-line
staff as to procedures to be followed in cases where it becomes necessary to
deny boarding due to overbooking," states Agency Decision No. 641-C-A-2007.
       
The Agency also directed Air Canada to clearly indicate in its tariff who
decides on the choice of compensation, either cash or voucher, in the event of
a denied boarding situation. If Air Canada states this option lies solely
within its discretion, it must indicate to the Agency why this tariff revision
is not unreasonable.
       
Despite this decision, the Agency wishes to advise air travellers that
checking-in early provides greater security against being denied boarding due
to overbooking.
       
The Canadian Transportation Agency is an independent quasi-judicial
tribunal which operates like a court. It regulates various modes of
transportation under Government of Canada jurisdiction, including air, marine
and rail. Its decision-making process is governed by the rules of fairness and
natural justice to ensure that all parties in a complaint receive equitable
treatment.