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Canadian airlines hit with $45K in fees for violating passenger rules

The departure board at T1 shows some delays and two cancelled flights on December 26, 2012. (Rick Madonik/Toronto Star via Getty Images)

Canadian airlines were hit with fines totalling $45,000 for violating Canada’s Air Passenger Protection Regulations.

The Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) issued several fines against Air Canada, WestJet Airlines Ltd., Transat A.T. Inc. and Porter Airlines Inc. last month for failing to display a notice telling passengers that they are entitled to certain standards and compensation under the new passenger regulations.

Under the new Air Passenger Protection Regulations, airlines are required to display a notice at the check-in desk, self-service machines and boarding gates as well as advise passengers to visit the CTA website for further details. Failing to do so can result in a $2,500 fine.

WestJet was hit with the largest penalty of the four airlines at $17,500, followed by Air Canada ($12,500), Air Transat ($7,500) and Porter ($7,500). The violations occurred between July 22 and Aug. 7, and the financial penalties were issued on Aug. 27.

The penalties are the first issued by the CTA since the initial set of regulations – which include rules around clear communication, tarmac delays, transportation of musical instruments, compensation for denied boarding, and lost or damaged baggage – went into effect in July.

The remaining regulations, which pertain to delays and cancellations, will go into effect Dec. 15.

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