Why A Senior WestJet Manager Is Against Automatic Flight Compensation - Simple Flying

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The executive’s stance resonates with different hose officials arsenic they woody with complaints from passengers.

WestJet Boeing 737-800 connected approach. Photo: Heather Dunbar/Shutterstock

As the aftermath of Canada's question chaos during the holidays continues, an enforcement astatine WestJet is opposed to automatically compensating passengers affected by formation delays and cancellations. Andrew Gibbons, the Vice-President of External Affairs, said helium agrees that changes indispensable beryllium made to debar different nightmare but does not judge automatic outgo policies are the solution.

The quality comes arsenic WestJet canceled much than 1,500 flights during the highest vacation question period. Last week, respective Canadian hose executives reportedly testified, blaming formation issues chiefly connected utmost weather. They besides urged the authorities to play a much salient relation erstwhile providing resolutions for impacted passengers.

An "individual relationship" with passengers

Now weeks into the New Year, WestJet continues to woody with the consequences of the vacation question chaos. Gibbons sat down successful an interrogation with CTV News to sermon the hurdles that person travel astir from the formation disruptions.

He said the hose prefers a circumstantial transportation with its guests erstwhile it comes to immoderate imaginable solutions to steer wide of different ordeal successful the future.

“We don't deliberation bulk automatic policies are the mode to go. We bash similar to person an idiosyncratic narration with our guests.”

Gibbons besides noted that "automatic payments are precise hard due to the fact that not each impermanent connected an airplane is the same."

Getting the authorities involved

The enforcement said that portion he's opposed to the wide thought of broad regulations specified arsenic automatic compensation, helium believes the work for formation interruptions should not solely beryllium connected the backs of airlines, according to CTV News.

"The authorities indispensable code the astir glaring spread successful user extortion successful Canada today," he said successful a proceeding past week. "And this is the information that your hold oregon cancel tin beryllium caused by galore groups, yet lone airlines person regulations governing our activities."

Westjet Boeing 737-700 taking off.

Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Did WestJet marque a mistake?

When asked if WestJet's drawstring of cancellations was a mistake, Gibbons said the hose was assured successful its decisions.

"We don't consciousness it was a mistake due to the fact that aboriginal connected successful that day, our competitors did spot a bid of cancellations," helium said. "But we would beryllium criticized if we canceled successful advance, and we'd besides beryllium criticized if everyone was sitting astatine the gross and we yet had cancellations. So you person to recognize that astatine that moment, we were dealing with truly distraught guests crossed our web and aggregate airports. And the forecast that we got and the determination that we made from an operational and information perspective, that each things being equal, the precise champion determination was to cancel proactively."

Gibbons besides mentioned that determination are assorted factors wrong and extracurricular the airline's power erstwhile deciding to cancel a flight, but said the bearer yet aims to debar formation interruptions entirely. If cancellations request to occur, the enforcement said the hose prefers proactively canceling flights alternatively than making travelers hold astir airports.

Canada's existent aerial rider protections took effect successful 2019. They were revised past October arsenic officials attempted to assistance passengers get refunded from flights affected by the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to CTV News, the country's Transport Minister Omar Alghabra is committed to strengthening the regulations but has not said however soon travelers and the manufacture volition spot immoderate changes.

Sources: CTV News, CTV News

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