OTTAWA — The Canadian Transportation Agency says it has received more than 8,000 complaints about airlines since mid-March, an unprecedented figure for the five-and-a-half-month period.
The total exceeds the number of complaints from all of 2018-19 and comes amid a prolonged customer backlash over moves by airlines to offer flight credit rather than refunds for most trips cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The transportation agency says it is in the process of reviewing the complaints and cannot provide a breakdown of the specific issues raised, but expects “a portion” of the cases relate to refunds and vouchers.
The surge in complaints lines up directly with a more than 90% plunge in passenger volume at Canadian carriers, suggesting reimbursements or flight cancellations rather than in-flight experiences play a prominent role.
Canadian airlines have typically offered flight credit valid for two years after it cancels a trip, leaving many customers concerned they will not feel comfortable flying for health or financial reasons within that time.
SOURCE: The Canadian Press