Our General Terms and Conditions of Carriage

Our Customer Commitment under the Canadian Air Passenger Protection Regulations

We’re committed to providing the highest quality of service to all our customers, and we believe it’s important to make our service commitments readily available to you. To this end, below we have outlined the key elements that matter most to you, our valued customer.

If you are denied boarding or your baggage is lost or damaged, you may be entitled to certain standards of treatment and compensation under the Air Passenger Protection Regulations. For more information about your passenger rights, please contact your air carrier or visit the Canadian Transportation Agency’s website.

For full terms and conditions applicable to your carriage please consult our tariffs.

If your baggage is lost, delayed or damaged

We work hard to ensure your checked baggage arrives with you. If it’s delayed, rest assured we’ll do our best to deliver it within 24 hours. Please contact an agent from Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express immediately if you cannot locate your checked baggage upon arrival.

  • You can check the status of delayed baggage online or by calling 1-888-689-2247.
  • If your baggage is delayed, damaged or lost, Air Canada will refund the fees you paid to check it in.
  • A carrier’s liability toward you is limited in respect to destruction, loss, delay, or damage to baggage, to 1,131 Special Drawing Rights (which is approximately CAN$2,100; EUR 1,400; US $1,565) per passenger. These limits apply to most international itineraries, as well as to domestic itineraries.

Make sure to provide proof to justify amounts claimed in compensation. You’ll be reimbursed for reasonable interim out-of-pocket expenses upon submitting your receipts. See more information on delayed or damaged baggage, or review our domestic tariffs (Rule 65) and international tariffs (Rule 60).

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Notifying you of delays or cancellations

Note: This section applies to flights operated by Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge, and Air Canada Express flights*.

If a flight is delayed or cancelled due to an unforeseen problem, we’ll do our best to keep you well-informed at the airport and on board the affected aircraft. That’s why you must provide your contact information at the time of booking.

Based on the information available, we will promptly provide timely updates, including the reason for the delay or cancellation:

  • As soon as we’re aware of such a delay or cancellation, and then;
  • At regular intervals of 30 minutes until a new departure time for the flight is set, or new travel arrangements for passengers have been made; and
  • As soon as possible when new information is available.

* 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.

In the event of an extended delay or a cancellation

Note: This section applies to flights operated by Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge and Air Canada Express flights*.

Some delays and 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 delay or cancellation, if your Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight* is delayed or cancelled, our agents will do everything possible to assist you.

  1. Standards of Treatment:

    When a flight is delayed or cancelled due to reasons within Air Canada's control, and you have waited four hours after the departure time indicated on your ticket, we’ll provide you with the following:

    • Food and drink in reasonable quantities, considering the length of the wait, the time of day and location;
    • Access to a means of communication; and
    • Hotel or comparable accommodations for overnight delays, for out of town passengers, subject to availability and within reasonable distance from airport, along with transportation to the hotel or other accommodation, and back to the airport.

    Please consult an airport agent to see if you qualify for meal vouchers, hotel accommodation and transportation to and from the airport.

    If the delay is outside of Air Canada’s control, we’ll be happy to offer you our hotel contact information where you can access our valued customer rates.

  2. Alternative Travel Arrangements:

    We’ll accommodate your travel plans by rebooking you on one of the following:

    • The next available Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight (in the cabin you originally purchased) - we can also change your return to match the same length of stay if necessary; or
    • A flight with another airline with which Air Canada has an agreement for such transportation, if circumstances permit.

    If the arrangements proposed don’t accommodate your travel needs, we’ll cancel your booking and you’ll be entitled to the following:

    • Retain the unused portion of your ticket and use it toward future travel on Air Canada flights; or
    • If your ticket is refundable or the delay is within our control, obtain a refund for the unused portion of your ticket, refunded to the original form of payment.

    Please visit our Delays and Cancellations page for more information, or consult our tariffs.

  3. Your Recourses:

    Should you wish to provide feedback or file a complaint about our services, please complete our web form and we’ll contact you shortly.  You may also file a complaint with the Canadian Transportation Agency.

* 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.

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If you are denied boarding

Note: This section applies to flights operated by Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge and Air Canada Express flights*.

It’s never our intention to inconvenience you. However, due to operational requirements and inventory control, sometimes we can’t accommodate you even though you have a confirmed reservation.

  1. Volunteers:

    During a denied boarding situation, Air Canada will first solicit volunteers who are willing to give up their seat in exchange for compensation.

  2. Boarding Priorities:

    If there aren’t enough volunteers, we may deny boarding involuntarily to passengers holding a confirmed reservation in accordance with our policy on denied boarding priority, as found in our domestic tariff (Rule 100) and international tariff (Rule 90).  We’ll give priority, in the following order, to unaccompanied minors; passengers with a disability, their support person, service animal, or emotional support animal, if any; passengers travelling with family members; and passengers who were previously denied boarding on the same ticket, provided the carrier is informed of this fact.

  3. Information:

    If you’re involuntarily denied boarding, we’ll tell you why you were denied boarding, the compensation and standards of treatment to which you may be entitled as well as the recourses you have available.

  4. Rebooking:

    If you’re denied boarding because of a situation that’s outside of our control, here’s how your travel plans will be accommodated:

    • We’ll rebook you on the next available Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight or on one of our partner airlines on a reasonable route from the same airport, within 48 hours of the end of the event that caused the denial of boarding; or
    • If we cannot do this, we’ll re-route you on any carrier via any reasonable air route to your destination or re-route you from another airport that is within a reasonable distance of your departure airport to your destination (if any). If your new departure is from such an airport, Air Canada will arrange for your transportation to that other airport.

    If you’re denied boarding due to a situation that is within our control or for safety purposes, here’s how your travel plans will be accommodated:

    • We’ll rebook you on the next available Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge or Air Canada Express flight or on one of our partner airlines within 9 hours of your original departure time; or
    • If we cannot do this, we’ll re-route you on any carrier via any reasonable air route to your destination that departs within 48 hours of your original departure time; or
    • If we’re still unable to provide a confirmed reservation that complies with the above, we’ll re-route you from another airport that is within a reasonable distance of your departure airport to your destination (if any). If your new departure is from such an airport, Air Canada will arrange for your transportation to that other airport;
    • If you refuse the alternate travel arrangements offered because travelling no longer serves a purpose, we’ll refund the unused portion of the ticket or, if you aren’t at your point of origin, refund your ticket and provide you with a confirmed reservation back to your point of origin that accommodates your needs.
  5. Standard of Treatment:

    If you’re denied boarding for a situation within Air Canada’s control or for security reasons, we’ll provide you with the following before you board your next flight booked as part of your alternate travel arrangements, unless this would further delay you:

    • Food and drink in reasonable quantities, considering the length of the wait, the time of day and location;
    • Access to a means of communication; and
    • Hotel or comparable accommodations for overnight delays for out-of-town passengers, subject to availability within reasonable distance from airport.
  6. Compensation:

    If you’re a passenger who is denied boarding involuntarily because of a situation within our control, you’ll be entitled to receive "denied boarding compensation" from Air Canada, unless:

    • You haven’t fully complied with the Air Canada ticketing and check-in requirements, or you aren’t acceptable for transportation under Air Canada' rules and practices. For more information on refusal to transport, see our domestic tariff (Rule 85) and international tariff (Rule 75);
    • The flight is canceled or delayed;
    • You’re offered accommodations on the same flight as the one specified on your ticket, at no extra charge.

    Denied boarding compensation is calculated based on your arrival time at destination and is $900 CAD (if delayed between 0 and 6 hours), $1,800 CAD (if delayed between 6 and 9 hours), and $2,400 CAD (if delayed by 9 hours and more).

Read more about travelling on a different flight for compensation. The complete rules explaining your rights, the payment of compensation and boarding priorities are available at all airport counters and boarding locations, as well as in our domestic tariff (Rule 100) and international tariff (Rule 90).

* 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.

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Seating children with family

Air Canada will do everything possible to ensure children under the age of 14 are seated close to their accompanying family member. However, it’s not always possible to automate this function when families travel on a fare that doesn’t allow advance seat selection or when traveling on separate reservations. Which is why we encourage you to call Air Canada Reservations to ensure proper seating arrangements are made in advance of travel.

Air Canada has a comprehensive policy that ensures every reasonable effort is made by Air Canada's airport staff, flight attendants and through in-flight procedures, to seat children under the age of 14 next to their accompanying adult.

Please note that passengers travelling in Signature Class pods must call Air Canada Reservations to ensure that they’re provided with proper family seating. This policy doesn’t apply to families who have opted to pay for the advance seat selection fee.

Please refer to our section on Children and Travel for additional information.

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We invite you to read some of our other customer service commitments, which reflect our dedication to transparency and the highest level of service.

Also, our Delayed Flights and Cancellations section answers a lot of other questions you may have if your plans are disrupted.


Our Tariffs

An air carrier's tariff is the document that contains the terms and conditions of carriage applicable to the air services it provides. All carriage sold by Air Canada is subject to its tariff.

Air Canada is required by law to publish its domestic terms and conditions of carriage on this website and to make its domestic tariffs available for public inspection.

Please consult our domestic tariffs as well as other applicable tariffs filed, where required, with the appropriate authorities, by clicking on the relevant links below.

Domestic Tariff Open PDF file *
(for travel within Canada)

International Tariff Open PDF file *
(for travel between Canada and a foreign country/region)

Carrier Surcharge Open PDF file

* Tariffs are subject to change without notice.

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Additional Air Canada Policies

Please read below other important conditions that govern transportation on Air Canada, e.g. our check-in and boarding gate deadlines, baggage policies and other conditions of contract.

Carry-on baggage policy

Oversized carry-on bags aren’t permitted on our aircraft and may cause flight delays for all passengers. Please ensure your carry-on bags are within the maximum allowed size as indicated below; they’re required to fit in the double-size verification device at check-in or boarding time.

You may carry items which fall within the 2-piece carry-on baggage allowance on board, as follows:

  • One (1) carry-on bag or suitcase (wheels and handles included in the size) and
  • One (1) personal article such as a briefcase, laptop computer, diaper bag, camera case or other similar item.
  Standard article Personal article
Maximum size 23 cm x 40 cm x 55 cm (9 in x 15.5 in x 21.5 in)
Wheels and handles included.
16 x 33 x 43 cm
(6 in x 13 in x 17 in)
Maximum weight Your carry-on baggage must be light enough that you can store it in the overhead bin unassisted.

It is recommended that documents and medication be packed in your carry-on baggage. All prescription medications must be properly labelled with the names of the patient, medication, and the issuing medical office or pharmacy.

Learn more about carry-on baggage restrictions.

Checked baggage policy

When travelling with Air Canada, Air Canada Rouge and Air Canada Express, you are entitled to a free checked baggage allowance, depending on your destination and/or fare purchased. When the number, weight and/or overall dimensions (length + width + height) of your checked bags exceed the limits of your free checked baggage allowance, additional checked baggage charges will apply.

Ensure your checked bags are properly identified.

Please do not pack valuables in your checked baggage. Excess valuation may be declared on certain types of articles. Special rules apply to fragile, valuable or perishable articles. Learn more about checked baggage restrictions.

  Maximum Overall Measurement
(Length + Width + Height)
Maximum Weight
Economy Class
(view complete baggage allowance)
158 cm
62 in
23 kg
50 lb
Business Class
Up to 3 bags
158 cm
62 in
32 kg
70 lb

Bags exceeding 32 kg (70 lb) in weight, 292 cm (115 in) in linear dimensions (length + width + height, wheels and handles included) or 203 cm (80 in) in length will not be accepted as checked baggage. Please contact Air Canada Cargo for handling.

If more than one carrier is providing the transportation for your journey, each carrier may apply different rules to baggage (both checked and carry-on).

Check-in and boarding gate deadlines

You must obtain your boarding pass and check in any baggage as per the check-in deadlines shown below.

Additionally, you must be available for boarding at the boarding gate as per the boarding gate deadlines indicated below. Failure to respect check-in and boarding gate deadlines may result in the reassignment of any pre-reserved seats, the cancellation of a reservation, and/or ineligibility for denied boarding compensation.

Itinerary When you
should check in
Check-in /
baggage drop-off ends
Boarding gate closes
Within Canada 90 minutes 45 minutes 15 minutes
To/From the US 120 minutes 60 minutes 15 minutes
International
(including Mexico and the Caribbean)
120 minutes 60 minutes 15 minutes
From Algiers (Algeria), Casablanca (Morocco) and Tel Aviv (Israel) 180 minutes 60 minutes 30 minutes

† Exception: 20 minutes for flights departing from Toronto City Airport (YTZ).


Cancelling your flight

Air Canada will cancel any purchased ticket and provide a full refund without penalty up to 24 hours after purchase. Beyond 24 hours, voluntary changes to your itinerary may require the payment of additional fees and fare upgrades. If you are travelling on a non- refundable ticket, we won’t be able to make exceptions in the event of an unexpected trip cancellation or medical emergency.

We recommend the purchase of travel insurance.

Any travel credit banked for unused tickets is non-transferable: when the credit is redeemed, it must be used by the same person whose name appears on the original ticket.

For additional information, please refer to our Refunds page.

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Important Notices

Passengers on a journey involving an ultimate destination or a stop in a country other than the country of departure are advised that international treaties known as the Montreal Convention, or its predecessor, the Warsaw Convention (including its amendments) may apply to the entire journey, including any portion thereof within a country. For such passengers, the applicable treaty, including special contracts of carriage embodied in any applicable tariffs, governs and may limit the liability of the carrier.

Notice of liability limitations

The Montreal Convention or the Warsaw Convention system may be applicable to your journey and these Conventions govern and may limit the liability of air carriers for death or bodily injury, for loss, delay or damage to baggage.

Where the Montreal Convention applies and for domestic itineraries, the limits of liability are as follows:

  1. There are no financial limits for death or bodily injury.
  2. With respect to destruction, loss of, or damage or delay to baggage, 1,131 Special Drawing Rights (approximately EUR 1,357; US $1,663) per passenger in most cases.
  3. For damage caused by delay to your journey, 4,694 Special Drawing Rights (approximately EUR 5,655; US $6,786) per passenger in most cases

Where the Warsaw Convention system applies, the limits of liability are as follows:

  1. 16,600 Special Drawing Rights (approximately EUR 20,000; US $20,000) with respect to death or bodily injury if the Hague Protocol to the Convention applies, or 8,300 Special Drawing Rights (approximately EUR 10,000; US $10,000) if only the Warsaw Convention applies. Many carriers have voluntarily waived these limits in their entirety, and US regulations require that, for journeys to, from or with an agreed stopping place in the US, the limit may not be less than US $75,000.
  2. 17 Special Drawing Rights (approximately EUR 20; US $20) per kg for loss of or damage or delay to checked baggage and 332 Special Drawing Rights (approximately EUR 400; US $400) for unchecked baggage.
  3. The carrier may also be liable for damage caused by delay.

Further information may be obtained from Air Canada as to the limits applicable to your journey. If your journey involves carriage by different carriers, you should contact each carrier for information on the applicable limits of liability.

Regardless of which Convention applies to your journey, you may benefit from a higher limit of liability for loss, delay or damage to baggage by making a declaration of your baggage value at check-in and paying any supplementary fee that may apply. Alternatively, if your baggage value exceeds the applicable limit of liability, you should fully insure it before you travel.

Time limit for action: Any action in court to claim damages must be brought within two years from the date of arrival of the aircraft, or from the date on which the aircraft ought to have arrived.
Baggage claims: Written notice to the carrier must be made within 7 days of the receipt of checked baggage in the case of damage, and, in the case of delay, within 21 days from the date on which it was placed at the disposal of the passenger.
Baggage Fee: For lost, damaged or delayed baggage, the carrier will also compensate you for any fees that may have been paid to check that baggage.

Notice of contract terms incorporated by reference

Your contract of carriage with the carrier that provides you with carriage by air, whether international, domestic or a domestic portion of an international journey, is subject to this notice; to any notice or receipt of the carrier; and to the carrier's individual terms and conditions (Conditions), related rules, regulations and policies (Regulations) and any applicable tariffs.

If your carriage is by more than one carrier, different Conditions, Regulations and any applicable tariffs may apply for each carrier.

The Conditions, Regulations and any applicable tariffs of each carrier are, by this notice, incorporated by reference into and made part of your contract of carriage.

The Conditions may include, but are not restricted to:

  • Conditions and limits on the carrier's liability for the bodily injury or death of passengers.
  • Conditions and limits on the carrier's liability for the loss of, damage to or delay of goods and baggage, including fragile or perishable goods.
  • Rules for declaring a higher baggage value and for paying any supplementary fee that may apply.
  • Application of the carrier's Conditions and limits of liability to the acts of the carrier's agents, servants and representatives, including any person providing either equipment or services to the carrier.
  • Claims restrictions, including time limits by which passengers must file claims or bring actions against the carrier.
  • Rules about reconfirmations or reservations; check-in times; the use, duration and validity of air transportation services; and the carrier's right to refuse carriage.
  • Rights of the carrier and limits on the carrier's liability for delay or failure to perform a service, including schedule changes, substitution of alternative carriers or aircraft and re-routing, and, when required by applicable law, the obligation of the carrier to notify passengers of the identity of the operating carrier or substituted aircraft.
  • Rights of the carrier to refuse carriage to passengers who fail to comply with applicable laws or who fail to present all necessary travel documents.

You can obtain more information about your contract of carriage, and find out how to request a copy, at places where transportation on the carrier is sold. Many carriers also have this information on their websites. When required by applicable law, you have the right to inspect the full text of your contract of carriage at the carrier's airport and sales offices, and to receive a copy by mail or other delivery service from each carrier free of charge, upon request.

If a carrier sells air transportation services or checks baggage specifying carriage on another carrier, it does so only as an agent for the other carrier.


UK Alternative Dispute Resolution – for flights to and from the UK only

If for any reason you are unsatisfied with our response to your complaint marked as final, and if your complaint is regarding a flight to or from the United Kingdom you can refer your complaint to AviationADR at https://www.aviationadr.org.uk/ who are approved by the Civil Aviation Authority to provide an independent review of complaints and dispute resolution services. You will need to refer your complaint to them within 12 months after our final response.

AviationADR can be contacted on https://www.aviationadr.org.uk/ or by telephone at +44 20 3540 8063. Or, if you live in the European Union and made your purchase online, you may use the European Commission's online dispute resolution platform to try and reach an out-of-court settlement by submitting your complaint by completing the electronic form available at http://ec.europa.eu/odr.