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New Air Passenger Protection Regulations go into effect today.

The update comes as the Canadian Transport Agency tries to close a loophole that left some passengers unable to secure cash refunds after pandemic-related flight cancellations.

Starting Thursday, airlines will be required to issue a full refund for cancellations and delays if passengers are not placed on a new flight within 48 hours, including for reasons outside of the airline’s control.

Previously, the passenger rights regime only required refunds for flight disruptions that were within the airline’s control, which excluded situations ranging from weather to war.

As well as a cash refund, the ticket price may also be reimbursed through credit or vouchers and is to be paid in full by the airline within 30 days.

The original Air Passenger Protection Regulations were established in 2019, before air travel demand collapsed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Editor’s note: (Sept. 8, 2022): This story has been updated to remove an inaccurate example of a disruption excluded from refunds.

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