Travelers are photographed at Toronto Pearson International Airport, on Thursday, December 16, 2021. New Air Passenger Protection Regulations go into effect this week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Tijana Martin

New air passenger protection rules come into effect Thursday

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.