New rules on airfare ads in effect; airlines must display all in ticket price

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TORONTO — The federal government says advertised airfares for flights originating in Canada must include all relevant fees so the travelling public can easily understand the total cost.

Transport Minister Denis Lebel said Tuesday that advertised prices for the public must include all taxes, fees and other charges so that consumers can clearly see the total cost of an airline ticket, with no hidden fees.

The amendments apply to ads in any media for travel services within or originating in Canada.

Repeat offenders can be fined up to $25,000.

The ``all-in'' ticket price doesn't need to include fees for optional services or amenities such as in-flight entertainment, meals, beverages and baggage_ but the price of the options must be displayed with taxes included.

Excluded from the new regulations are flights originating outside Canada, package travel services, loyalty rewards programs and charter services booked through corporate travel offices.

``We are protecting Canadian air travellers by helping them see, clearly and up front, the full cost of air tickets, so they can make informed travel choices,'' Lebel said.

``In addition to benefiting consumers by ensuring transparent advertising, these regulations will promote fair competition between all advertisers.''

He said offenders can be fined up to $25,000.

The Canadian Transportation Agency developed the new rules after consulting industry and consumer interest groups and also meeting with provincial and foreign government officials.

Some airlines announced earlier this year that they would move to an all-in approach in advance of the changes. The organization representing Canada's major airlines issued a statement Tuesday welcoming Lebel's announcement.

``We genuinely appreciated the open and meaningful consultative process undertaken by the Canadian Transportation Agency,'' the National Airlines Council of Canada said.

``The new framework is a good example of industry and government working together. We are pleased that the new rules provide clarity, maximize transparency and ultimately help the consumer make informed decisions'', said NACC president George Petsikas.

The National Airlines Council of Canada is a trade association founded by Air Canada, WestJet, Air Transat and Jazz Aviation LP.

Organizations: National Airlines Council, Canadian Transportation Agency, Air Canada WestJet Air Transat Aviation LP

Geographic location: Canada, TORONTO

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  • UPWESTER
    December 21, 2012 - 12:31

    ``We are protecting Canadian air travellers by helping them see, clearly and up front, the full cost of air tickets, so they can make informed travel choices,'' Lebel said.....What you are doing is adding another level of bueracratic red tape and extra costs to an industry that is already struggling trying to turn a profit, which most don't. Anyone who cant figure out their cost to fly by themselves shouldn't fly.Why don't they make grocery stores and other retailers show the all in price, why limit it to just airlines? What the transport minister should be doing is looking into ways to cut airport and landing fees, which are the highest in the world, instead of adding more red tape, or should that be blue tape?

  • wendy grant
    December 19, 2012 - 23:13

    WHAT WE ALL FIND HERE IN aTLANTIC cANADA IS WE DON'T GET THE GREAT SALES LIKE TORONTO DOES, EG: RETURN ALL TAXES ETC IN RETURN. SO THAT IS A REAL BOOT TO THEM, WHAT ABOUT US.???? AS USUAL NOTHING, NO WONDER TONS OF US FLY OTHER MEANS.

    • MARYJANE
      December 21, 2012 - 12:35

      AS USUAL NOTHING, NO WONDER TONS OF US FLY OTHER MEANS. What other means do you fly by? Are you a devotee of Timothy Leary?