Delayed Flights and Cancellations

What you can do when your flight is delayed or cancelled

Learn what you can do when your flight is delayed or cancelled.

We’re committed to getting you where you need to go and providing you with the most up-to-date information regarding known delays and cancellations. We strive to give you options should your travel plans be disrupted.

Information on flight delays and cancellations

There are several ways to receive the most up-to-date information about your scheduled flight including the following:

  • Use our online Flight Status tool.
    • You can also get the latest flight status information by calling the Air Canada automated Flight Information System at 1-888-422-7533 (Canada or U.S.). From all other countries.
  • Check our Daily travel outlook page for the latest updates.
  • If you're already at the airport, check the airport display screens, listen for announcements on the airport's public address system, or ask one of our airport agents for information.
  • In the event of severe irregular operations, we will post travel alerts for affected cities or areas on our homepage, or on our Daily travel outlook page. Find out what you can do if a travel alert disrupts your travel plans.
  • Flight Notification
    Register for our Flight Notification service to be notified if the departure or arrival time of your Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight has been delayed or changed. Notifications can be sent directly to your text-messaging-enabled phone or your email address. Notifications are issued only if there is a delay of 15 minutes or more, and are sent in the following way:
    • 24 hours prior to departure,
    • 4 hours prior to departure, and then
    • periodically for changes occurring within 4 hours of departure

When an Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight is cancelled or is expected to be delayed due to severe weather, you can use our Delayed and Cancelled Flight Service to search for another flight or cancel your remaining flight(s) online. The service provides the same availability and options on Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge and Air Canada Express flights as our airport or call centre representatives. During severe weather conditions, the next available flight may be several days away.

 

Access delayed and cancelled
flight serviceOpens in New Window

Access delayed
and cancelled
flight serviceOpens in New Window

How the online tool works

If Air Canada advises you that your flight has been cancelled, or if severe weather conditions are expected to bring about a flight delay or cancellation, you can access the service online using your booking reference number and passenger last name.


If your flight has in fact been delayed or cancelled, the service will advise you, in many cases, that we have already rebooked you on an alternate flight, thus minimizing disruptions to your travel plans. You will then be able to:

  • View your new flight details (if you've been rebooked) and check in if your flight is eligible for online check-in,
  • Search for another flight to your destination (no change fee will apply), or
  • Cancel your remaining flights altogether.

If your flight has been delayed or cancelled, you'll also be provided with a link to the service when you check in for your original flight via the Web, your mobile device or at an airport kiosk.

 

You can access the online tool at any time to see if a flight has been delayed or cancelled, provided you have the booking reference number and passenger last name handy.

If your booking is eligible, you can then make changes online or cancel your remaining flights. However, some bookings can't be changed or cancelled using the online tool, and you'd need to call Air Canada Reservations or talk to an Air Canada airport agent. For instance, the following bookings aren't eligible:

To retrieve your booking information, you'll need to provide your booking reference number and a passenger last name.

If you then want to change or cancel your booking, in order to protect your personal information, the tool will require that you authenticate yourself. You'll need to enter the payment card number used to purchase the original booking, or your Aeroplan number and password.

Depending on where you've made your booking, your Aeroplan number or payment card number may not be stored in your booking information and you will need to contact Air Canada Reservations to make changes to your booking.

Not necessarily. We'll make every effort to find you a replacement flight to your destination, but that may not always be possible. If we are unable to offer you alternate flight arrangements, we'll let you know, and you'll be able to use the tool to search for another flight that may meet your needs, or cancel your remaining flight(s).

If you choose to cancel your remaining flight(s) using the online tool, you will be able to retain the value of your ticket for future travel. Learn more about our refund options.

Not necessarily. If there are no longer any seats available in Executive Class, the tool will rebook you in Economy class. You'll then have three options:

  • Keep the new flight and travel in Economy Class. If you choose this option, you can obtain a refund for the fare difference by contacting Air Canada's Refund Services.
  • Search for an alternate flight to your destination (no change fee will apply).
  • Cancel your remaining flights altogether.

We've put a few safeguards in place to avoid any confusion for passengers travelling with checked baggage. For instance:

  • The tool won't allow you to change or cancel your itinerary if you've already printed baggage tags and/or checked your bags for your original flight. It will instruct you to see an Air Canada airport agent for assistance.
  • If the tool has rebooked you on a new flight and you already checked your bags for your original flight, the tool will only allow you to check in for your new flight after you've reclaimed your bags from your original flight. It will instruct you to see an Air Canada airport agent for assistance.
  • If your original flight is cancelled after you checked your bags for your original flight, and you end up not travelling at all (e.g. we can't find a replacement flight for you), the tool will remind you to reclaim your bags before leaving the airport.

If you're travelling on a codeshare flight, operated by another airline, please contact the carrier directly. The operating carrier is responsible for flight delays and cancellations that occur within 48 hours of departure. 

Some delays are within an airline's control, whereas others, like those caused by severe weather or airport and air traffic disruptions, are simply out of our hands. But whatever the reason for the delay, we’ll be there to assist you.

In the case of an extended delay to an Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight* which is expected to last:

  • 2 hours or more:
    • You can change your reservation** at no cost by choosing a new departure date within 7 days of your original travel date. If you change your departing flight, you can also, at the same time, choose a new return flight to match the same length of stay, if necessary.
    • You can retain the unused portion of your ticket and use it toward future travel on Air Canada.
    • You can request a refund for the unused portion of your ticket.

  • 4 hours or more:
    • When the delay is caused by circumstances within Air Canada's control, an Air Canada airport agent will offer you a meal voucher for use at an airport restaurant or for our Air Canada Café service.

  • 8 hours or more:
    • For circumstances within Air Canada's control - If your flight has been rescheduled to depart the next day, you may be entitled to meal vouchers, transportation to and from the airport as well as hotel accommodations (subject to availability). Ask an Air Canada airport agent for assistance.
    • For circumstances outside Air Canada's control - If your flight has been rescheduled to depart the next day, Air Canada representatives will provide you with hotel contact information where you can obtain valued customer rates.

In the event of an extended delay caused by a major disruption (e.g. a travel alert has been issued), we will offer you the option of travelling by Via Rail when a train segment matching your itinerary is available, as per the Air Canada/VIA Rail reprotection agreement.

* If you're travelling on a codeshare flight, operated by another airline, we recommend that you contact the carrier directly, as it may be in a better position to make the appropriate accommodation arrangements.
** Please note that all flight changes are subject to availability.

If the Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight* you're travelling on is delayed, and you want to find another flight or cancel your remaining flight(s), you can:

  • Search for an alternate flight to your destination (no change fees will apply)
  • Cancel our remaining flight(s) ** altogether by accessing our online tool:
  • Call Air Canada Reservations for assistance in rebooking your delayed flight or cancelling the remainder of your itinerary.
  • Speak to an Air Canada airport agent if you're already at the airport.

And remember that, if you purchased On My Way™ travel assistance for the delayed flight, you can call the On My Way™ desk at the number indicated on your Itinerary/Receipt to benefit from the extra coverage provided by this service.

* If you're travelling on a codeshare flight, operated by another airline, we recommend that you contact the carrier directly, as it may be in a better position to make the appropriate accommodation arrangements.
** View Refund options.

  • In the case of delays of more than 60 minutes on the aircraft, when it is deemed safe, practical and legal, we will provide beverages and food. You'll also be free to use your cell phone or computer, and move around the cabin.
  • If the delay exceeds 90 minutes and circumstances permit, you'll be given the option of disembarking from the aircraft until it is time to depart.

Our in-flight entertainment systemOpens in New Window is available to you right away so you can start watching your favourite movie or access one of our many other on-board entertainment features. 

With the Unaccompanied Minor service, parents or guardians are asked to remain at the airport until their child's flight has departed. If the flight is delayed and your child has already boarded the plane, an agent will ensure that your child is well taken care of during the delay.

Youths travelling alone (ages 12 to 17), for whom the parent or guardian has not requested the Unaccompanied Minor service, will be taken care of by our agents. We will also arrange for accommodations, meals and transportation if needed.

Some cancellations are within an airline's control, whereas others, like those caused by severe weather or airport and air traffic disruptions, are simply out of our hands. Whatever the reason for the cancellation, Air Canada will be there to assist you.

If your Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight* is cancelled, our agents will do everything possible to assist you. In an effort to accommodate your travel plans, we will:

  • Rebook you:
    • on the next available Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight (in the cabin you originally purchased) within 7 days of your original travel date - we can also change your return to match the same length of stay if necessary; or
    • on a flight with another airline with which Air Canada has an agreement for such transportation, if circumstances permit.
    • with Via Rail when a train segment matching your itinerary is available, as per the Air Canada/VIA Rail reprotection agreement.
  • If the next available flight doesn't depart until the next day, provide certain expenses to eligible customers when a flight is cancelled due to reasons within Air Canada's control. Please check with an airport agent to see if you qualify for meal vouchers, hotel accommodation and transportation to and from the airport.
  • Cancel your booking and offer you the option of:

* If you’re travelling on a codeshare flight, operated by another airline, we recommend that you contact the carrier directly, as it may be in a better position to make the appropriate accommodation arrangements.

We’ll do our best to automatically rebook you on the next available Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight* (within the cabin you originally purchased). There are several ways you can view your new flight details, find another flight or cancel your remaining flights:

  • Use our Delayed and Cancelled Flight ServiceOpens in New Window tool at any time within 48 hours of your flight to:
    • View your new flight details (if you’ve been rebooked) and check in if your flight is eligible for online check-in,
    • Search for an alternate flight to your destination (no change fees will apply);
    • Cancel your remaining flight(s)**.
  • Call Air Canada Reservations for assistance in rebooking when your itinerary is not eligible for rebooking through our delayed and cancelled flight service. Our call centre agents will gladly assist you with additional rebooking options.
  • Ask an Air Canada airport agent for assistance if you’re already at the airport.

And remember that, if you purchased On My Way™ travel assistance for the cancelled flight, you can call the On My Way™ desk at the number indicated on your Itinerary/Receipt to benefit from the extra coverage provided by this service.

* If you’re travelling on a codeshare flight, operated by another airline, we recommend that you contact the carrier directly, as it may be in a better position to make the appropriate accommodation arrangements.
** View Refund options

With the Unaccompanied Minor service, parents or guardians are asked to remain at the airport until their child's flight has departed. If the flight is cancelled, an agent will remain with your child until you are both reunited.

Youths travelling alone (ages 12 to 17), for whom the parent or guardian has not requested the Unaccompanied Minor service, will be taken care of by our agents. We will also arrange for accommodations, meals and transportation if needed. 

Procedures vary from one airport to another due to local conditions and requirements. Listen for announcements directing you to the appropriate baggage carrousel where you may retrieve your bag(s).

If you’re being rebooked on another flight, Air Canada will normally allow a minimum of 2 to 4 hours (depending on your destination) between your originally booked flight and your new flight, to give you time to retrieve your bags from your first flight and complete required security procedures for your replacement flight.

In the unfortunate event that your bags are delayed, please report the delay to an Air Canada agent at the Air Canada Baggage Service Counter before leaving the airport. The Baggage Service Counters are located in the arrivals area next to the baggage carrousels. Learn more about what else you can do when your bags are delayed.

Delayed and cancelled flight service

If you learn that your flight is delayed or cancelled, use this Service to search for an alternate flight to your destination or to cancel your remaining flight(s).

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