Filing a baggage claim with the airline
Keep in mind the following time limits:
- Your baggage was damaged
- You must submit a claim in writing to the airline within 7 days after receiving your damaged baggage.
- Your baggage was delayed but returned within 21 days
- For travel on an international itinerary: You must submit a claim in writing to the airline within 21 days after receiving your baggage;
- For travel on a domestic itinerary: You should submit a claim in writing to the airline as soon as possible and no later than the time limit found in the airline's tariff (the contract of transport between you and the airline).
- Your baggage was not returned within 21 days — it is considered lost
- You should submit a claim in writing to the airline as soon as possible.
Remember to keep copies of your baggage information, baggage tags, and receipts for any expenses that you have to pay to temporarily (or permanently) replace the items that were in your baggage.
Lost and damaged baggage
The airline must refund any fees you had to pay for baggage services if your baggage has been lost or damaged. These could include:
- standard baggage fees;
- fees for extra baggage; and/or
- fees for oversized and/or overweight baggage.
If your baggage is lost or damaged while in the airline's care, the airline must compensate you up to approximately $2,350 to replace items that were lost or damaged.
The airline does not have to compensate you if the damage resulted from the quality of your baggage.
For travel on an international itinerary
The airline must compensate you up to approximately $2,350 for items you may need until your baggage is returned to you.
The airline does not have to compensate you if it took all reasonable measures to avoid the issue or if it was impossible for them to take these measures.
For travel on a domestic itinerary
Your rights are outlined in the airline's tariff (the contract of transport between you and the airline).
If you are not satisfied with the airline's response to your claim, or you haven’t received a response within 30 days, you can make a complaint with the Canadian Transportation Agency.
Resources and references
Baggage Requirements for Domestic Services: A Guide explains what airlines must do to meet baggage requirements of the Air Passenger Protection Regulations for domestic services.
Reference: Airline obligations for lost, damaged or delayed baggage are set out in Montreal Convention and the Air Passenger Protection Regulations.
This is not a legal document. The explanations it provides are for information purposes only. Airline obligations can be found in the Air Passenger Protection Regulations. In case of differences between this document and legislation or regulations, the legislation and regulations prevail.
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