Statistics 2020-2021

Table of contents

Overview

Total rulings by Members

Appointed by the Governor in Council, the Agency's Members are responsible for rendering decisions and orders related to formal complaints or applications, as well as addressing other issues affecting Canada's national transportation system.

As objective and impartial quasi-judicial decision-makers, the Members abide by a Code of Conduct.

Note: Sometimes a single ruling is made that covers multiple cases. As well, some cases may result in multiple types of rulings.

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Orders 295 182 230 236 212
Decisions 104 98 57 69 353
Determinations 216 238 266 260 14
Permits 396 657 503 387 353
Final letter decisions 15 12 20 13 14
Interim decisions 92 105 114 91 58
Total 1118 1292 1190 1056 1004

Note:

  • In 2016-2017 the category of Determinations was created to better reflect/capture the Agency's economic regulatory role. In 2017-2018 this category was expanded to include all economic regulatory determinations that involve a single party.

Disputes resolved by the Agency

The Canadian Transportation Agency keeps the national transportation system running efficiently and smoothly in the interests of all Canadians – those who work and invest in it, the producers, shippers, travellers and businesses who rely on it, and the communities where it operates – and the prosperity and social fabric of the country as a whole. One way the Agency implements this mandate is by helping resolve disputes by using a range of approaches from relatively informal facilitation and mediation to more formal arbitration and adjudication.

Disputes resolved by facilitation

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Accessible 105 95 72 78 53
Air 7444 7630 4461 3614 2126
Marine 0 0 0 0 0
Rail 33 18 15 16 14
Total 7582 7743 4548 3708 2193

Disputes resolved by mediation

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Accessible 54 33 14 7 10
Air 184 113 160 123 55
Marine 1 1 0 0 0
Rail 20 41 7 8 7
Total 259 188 181 138 72

Disputes resolved by adjudication

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Accessible 15 26 12 13 6
Air 81 88 47 54 14
Marine 4 4 8 22 6
Rail 5 10 9 5 8
Total 105 128 76 94 34

Disputes resolved by arbitration

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Accessible 0 0 0 0 0
Air 0 0 0 0 0
Marine 0 0 0 0 0
Rail 3 2 5 1 2
Total 3 2 5 1 2

Fostering compliance

Note: The CTA has introduced a risk-based approach to inform decisions about the allocation of certain compliance monitoring and enforcement resources, which have been directed where the likelihood and/or impact of non-compliance is higher, which has led to a decrease in periodic inspections and an increase in other compliance activities.

The CTA is committed to ensuring effective monitoring and enforcement of industry compliance with legislative and regulatory provisions, which is in the interests of travellers, shippers, and the transportation companies that follow the rules and should not face unfair competition from those who don't. Agency enforcement officers conduct periodic inspections and targeted investigations to verify that service providers comply with the Canada Transportation Act, the Canada Transportation Act, the Air Transportation Regulations and the Personnel Training for the Assistance of Persons with Disabilities Regulations.

Agency officers also regularly verify that any person or corporation that advertises air fares complies with all-inclusive air price advertising regulations.

Inspections and investigations

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Periodic carrier inspections 0 15 86 80 139
Periodic facility inspections 0 8 22 28 22
Desk inspections 7 n/a n/a n/a n/a
Monitoring at terminals 2 81 n/a n/a n/a
Verification of air carriers' advertisements n/a 63 26 38 16
Website verifications 109 40 n/a n/a n/a
Targeted investigations 23 27 53 65 34
Total 141 234 187 211 211

Notes:

  • Verification of air carriers' advertisements: This is the combination of website verfications for APPR including air carrier advertisements
  • Website verifications: ASPAR is now part of the APPR.
  • Desk inspections: Online inspections for compliance with ATPDR

Contraventions

Enforcement officers can issue fines (administrative monetary penalties) for contraventions of certain provisions in the following legislation and regulations:

  • Canada Transportation Act
  • Air Transportation Regulations
  • Personnel Training for the Assistance of Persons with Disabilities Regulations

Enforcement officers consider whether to take action in every case where Members find a contravention of these provisions. Fines can reach $5,000 per offence for individuals and $25,000 for corporations, depending on the type of penalty and contravention. In addition, some specific rail-related violations can reach up to $100,000 per offence.

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Notice of Violation - with Administrative Monetary Penalty 6 12 n/a n/a n/a
Number of violations 19 176 79 84 61
Total amount of penalties $54,500 $780,000 $185,000 $550,750 $116,250
Notice of violation - with warning 2 0 n/a n/a n/a
Monetary penalties 4 n/a 16 28 14
Informal warnings n/a n/a 0 0 5
Formal warnings n/a 9 63 56 42
Cautionary notices 49 7 n/a n/a n/a
Total number of potential violations 162 12 n/a n/a n/a

Notes:

  • Notice of violation - with Administrative Monetary Penalty: The increase in the total amount of Administrative Monetary Penalties (AMPs) as well as in the total number of violations found in 2017-2018 and 2019-2020 is primarily attributable to Notices of violation with AMPs issued following Agency inquiries and subsequent investigations by Designated Enforcement Officers.
  • Notice of violation with warning: This is a new power under the Canada Transportation Act, as amended by the Act to Ensure a Barrier-Free Canada (Accessible Canada Act).
  • Informal warnings: The use of this enforcement action has been discontinued.
  • Formal warnings: The use of this enforcement action has been discontinued.
  • Cautionary notice: This type of enforcement action was introduced in 2019-2020.
  • "Notice of Violation - with Administrative Monetary Penalty"; "Total number of violations found"; and "Total amount of Administrative Monetary Penalties" - are subject to change where Notices of Violation or specific violations are withdrawn or reversed by the Transportation Appeal Tribunal of Canada.

Providing consumer protection for air passengers

Number and outcome of air travel complaints

The Canadian Transportation Agency can help resolve complaints about air travel within, to and from Canada. The role of the CTA is to make sure that the airline has applied the terms and conditions set out in the passengers contract with the airline – and that both the passenger and the airline have met their end of the bargain. The Agency can also handle more complex cases where a passenger feels that the airline's contract is unclear, unjust, unreasonable or discriminatory. Some common issues the CTA can help with: flight delays, cancellations, missed connections, schedule changes; lost, damaged or delayed baggage; getting bumped due to overbooking.

Note: These statistics only include complaints that were submitted to the Agency – they do not reflect the total number of air travel complaints against air carriers. Many travellers resolve their complaints directly with the carrier.

New complaints and complaints carried over

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Carry-over from previous reporting period 13467 3218 1384 884 269
New complaints 13275 19392 7650 5565 3367
Total 26742 22610 9034 6449 3636

Complaints closed by process

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Facilitation 7444 7630 4461 3614 2126
Mediation 184 113 160 123 55
Adjudication 81 88 47 54 14
Inquiry 0 568 - 89 -
Determined to be outside of the Agency's mandate 740 446 559 494 517
Other (includes other types of case closures, e.g. withdrawn, declined) 1778 298 612 691 40
Total 10227 9143 5839 5065 2752

Note:

  • 2019-2020 was Sunwing inquiry, 2017-2018 was Air Transat inquiry.

Number of complaints in progress at year end (March 31)

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Complaints in progress at year end 16515 13467 3218 1384 884

Number of complaints resolved (by carrier)

Note: Complaints against more than one carrier are counted for each carrier involved in the dispute resolution process.

Complaints against an air carrier include complaints that were made against that carrier's subsidiaries and affiliates. For example, Air Canada includes complaints against Jazz Aviation, Sky Regional, Air Georgian, etc.

The "Other" category includes carriers that:

  • only have 1-2 complaints against them; and/or
  • ceased operations in the previous reporting periods.

Number of complaints resolved against Canadian carriers

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Air Canada 3481 3055 1997 2380 1556
Air Transat 448 417 302 341 141
WestJet 1101 975 369 329 166
Sunwing 768 1160 252 146 51
Porter Airlines 50 72 114 136 43
Flair 129 476 225 49 1
Other 383 438 97 34 27
Total 6360 6593 3356 3415 1985

Number of complaints resolved against U.S. carriers

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
United 163 111 79 91 76
American Airlines 98 88 46 61 40
Delta 66 74 31 50 19
Other 17 9 5 7 2
Total 344 282 162 207 142

Number of complaints resolved against European carriers

.
  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Lufthansa 65 110 77 43 47
Air France 46 60 54 39 20
British Airways 24 31 34 37 27
KLM 36 43 29 31 19
Alitalia 9 23 13 15 13
Other 160 298 278 101 160
Total 340 565 485 266 286

Number of complaints resolved against other foreign carriers

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Royal Air Maroc 72 127 83 57 24
Jet Airways 2 103 29 48 27
WOW Airlines 1 55 67 43 -
Turkish Airlines 49 64 44 32 23
China Eastern 21 24 23 28 17
Etihad Airways 16 40 24 17 15
Air India 53 21 8 13 15
Cathay Pacific 29 34 8 11 8
Other 422 558 379 338 210
Total 665 1026 665 587 339

Issues raised in air travel complaints

The Agency is required by the Canada Transportation Act to provide an overview of the all air travel complaints it processes – even if it's not an issue the Agency can help with. These issues are reported separately.

Learn more about the types of complaints the Agency can and cannot handle.

Note: Complaints often involve more than one issue. That's why the total number of issues is greater than the number of complaints.

Issues – all carriers

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Flight disruptions 9551 7770 4145 2657 1325
Baggage 1585 2398 2023 1517 968
Issues outside the Agency's jurisdiction 1193 4394 2720 1036 518
Ticketing 298 578 734 362 334
Refusal to transport 517 682 464 359 382
Reservations 680 605 337 286 159
Denied boarding 252 267 152 159 135
Communications 1364 1339 n/a n/a n/a
Standards of treatment 1536 1864 n/a n/a n/a
Fares (included in "Other" since FY 2019-2020) n/a n/a 86 26 49
Other 309 423 25 22 14
Total 17285 20320 10686 6424 3884

Issues within the Agency's jurisdiction – major Canadian carriers (2020-2021)

  Air Canada Air Transat Porter Sunwing WestJet Other
Baggage 92 34 11 132 187 110
Denied boarding 174 4 4 0 22 2
Flight disruptions 4803 528 44 920 1391 593
Refusal to transport 208 17 12 10 72 32
Reservations 267 38 6 33 148 34
Ticketing 129 3 1 5 40 18
Other 2427 269 35 363 711 355
Total 8100 893 113 1463 2571 1144

Note:

  • The increase in the "other" category is due primarily to the addition of certain complaint issues to that category (e.g., standards of treatment) in anticipation of the coming into force of the Air Passenger Protection Regulations. Complaint issue categories will be further expanded in next year's report.
Previous statistics on issues raised in complaints – major Canadian air carriers

Issues within the Agency's jurisdiction – major Canadian carriers (2019-2020)

  Air Canada Air Transat Porter Sunwing WestJet Other
Baggage 866 70 10 291 151 159
Denied boarding 142 4 1 4 27 8
Flight disruptions 2633 352 60 1383 882 741
Refusal to transport 214 34 9 8 98 88
Reservations 239 24 3 34 72 50
Ticketing 423 37 14 29 180 191
Other 1410 224 40 750 537 488
Total 5927 745 137 2497 1947 1725

Note:

  • The increase in the "other" category is due primarily to the addition of certain complaint issues to that category (e.g., standards of treatment) in anticipation of the coming into force of the Air Passenger Protection Regulations. Complaint issue categories will be further expanded in next year's report.

Issues within the Agency's jurisdiction – major Canadian carriers (2018-2019)

  Air Canada Air Transat Porter Sunwing WestJet Other
Baggage 993 82 16 100 96 123
Denied boarding 97 5 3 1 6 3
Flight disruptions 1907 261 139 266 388 198
Refusal to transport 167 42 8 9 33 30
Reservations 158 24 3 13 21 23
Ticketing 324 30 17 9 55 77
Other 1202 137 86 127 235 222
Total 4848 581 272 525 834 676

Note:

  • The increase in the "other" category is due primarily to the addition of certain complaint issues to that category (e.g., standards of treatment) in anticipation of the coming into force of the Air Passenger Protection Regulations. Complaint issue categories will be further expanded in next year's report.

Issues within the Agency's jurisdiction – major Canadian carriers (2017-2018)

  Air Canada Air Transat Porter Sunwing WestJet Other
Baggage 903 47 5 50 70 27
Denied boarding 106 4 3 0 5 1
Flight disruptions 1405 283 128 91 212 33
Refusal to transport 165 27 9 8 16 6
Reservations 147 18 3 5 29 5
Ticketing 175 18 8 5 24 9
Other 18 2 1 0 3 1
Total 2919 399 157 159 359 82

Issues within the Agency's jurisdiction – major Canadian carriers (2016-2017)

  Air Canada Air Transat Porter Sunwing WestJet Other
Baggage 465 33 2 19 24 4
Carrier-operated loyalty programs 2 1 1 1 0 0
Denied boarding 85 1 4 0 4 0
Flight disruptions 694 74 22 20 75 17
Refusal to transport 195 15 3 7 12 1
Reservations 69 9 5 5 7 0
Ticketing 228 14 4 1 9 2
Other 0 26 6 5 23 2
Total 1738 173 47 58 154 26

Other statistics

Accessible Canada Act (amendments to subsection 42(2) of the CTA)

Requirements on Agency's annual reporting 2020-2021
# of inspections conducted to verify compliance and prevent non-compliance 1
# of orders made under section 181.2 0
# of orders, in writing, made under section 26, 60 to 62 0
# of notices of violation issued under section 180 3
# of inquiries made under any of sections 172, 172.1 and 172.3 11

Air carriers holding Agency licences

The Agency is the aeronautical authority for Canada that issues licences to operate publicly available air services. The Agency issues licences to operate domestic air services to Canadian applicants. It also issues licences to operate scheduled and non-scheduled international services to and from Canada.

Note: the number of licences is the total on March 31 (the end of the fiscal year).

Total number of air carriers Agency licences

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Canadian 558 559 578 600 613
U.S. 570 584 590 597 607
Other 266 246 234 230 220
Total 1394 1389 1402 1427 1440

Types of licences held by Canadian air carriers (2020-2021)

  Small aircraft Medium aircraft Large aircraft All cargo Total
Domestic 543 22 15 38 618
Non-scheduled international 240 19 15 25 299
Scheduled international 9 37 177 106 329
Total 792 78 207 169 1246
Previous statistics on licences held by Canadian air carriers

Types of licences held by Canadian air carriers (2019-2020)

  Small aircraft Medium aircraft Large aircraft All cargo Total
Domestic 546 22 15 38 621
Non-scheduled international 236 19 15 27 297
Scheduled international 10 42 171 103 326
Total 792 83 201 168 1244

Types of licences held by Canadian air carriers (2018-2019)

  Small aircraft Medium aircraft Large aircraft All cargo Total
Domestic 566 23 15 41 645
Non-scheduled international 246 20 15 29 310
Scheduled international 10 41 167 101 319
Total 822 84 197 171 1274

Types of licences held by Canadian air carriers (2017-2018)

  Small aircraft Medium aircraft Large aircraft All cargo Total
Domestic 590 24 13 41 668
Non-scheduled international 254 21 13 28 316
Scheduled international 11 40 151 98 300
Total 855 85 177 167 1284

Types of licences held by Canadian air carriers (2016-2017)

  Small aircraft Medium aircraft Large aircraft All cargo Total
Domestic 609 25 13 43 690
Non-scheduled international 256 22 13 29 320
Scheduled international 9 41 152 98 300
Total 874 88 178 170 1310

Types of licences held by U.S. and other foreign air carriers (2020-2021)

  U.S. Other
Non-scheduled international 565 222
Scheduled international 41 119
Total 606 341
Previous statistics on licences held by U.S. and other foreign carriers

Types of licences held by U.S. and other foreign air carriers (2019-2020)

  U.S. Other
Non-scheduled international 577 194
Scheduled international 42 115
Total 619 309

Types of licences held by U.S. and other foreign air carriers (2018-2019)

  U.S. Other
Non-scheduled international 584 183
Scheduled international 42 112
Total 626 295

Types of licences held by U.S. and other foreign air carriers (2017-2018)

  U.S. Other
Non-scheduled international 588 182
Scheduled international 40 109
Total 628 291

Types of licences held by U.S. and other foreign air carriers (2016-2017)

  U.S. Other
Non-scheduled international 598 172
Scheduled international 42 110
Total 640 282

Air licensing activities

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
New licences 94 79 90 86 114
New licences - Canadian 49 - - - -
New licences - Foreign 45 - - - -
Amendment of licences initiated by the applicant 33 52 40 73 89
Amendment of licences initiated by the Agency 9 9 1 31 14
Suspensions initiated by the applicant 56 30 36 29 32
Suspensions initiated by the Agency 408 181 155 162 147
Exemptions/rulings 13 50 123 116 120
Reinstatements 171 94 96 81 88
Cancellations 52 84 84 86 105
Code share authorities n/a n/a 23 26 73
Wet lease authorities n/a n/a 23 17 20
Total 930 579 671 707 802

Air charter permits

An international charter air service is a non-scheduled international service operated under a contractual arrangement between an air carrier and a charterer. Carriers holding a licence for a non-scheduled international service must get an Agency program permit or an authorization to operate Canadian-originating charter flights to any foreign country. The permit and authorization processes ensure that air carriers operating international charter flights comply with the Air Transportation Regulations.

Number of permits issued

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Passenger non-resaleable entity charters n/a 465 308 226 179
Cargo non-resaleable entity charters n/a 127 150 94 109
Passengers resaleable n/a 65 51 55 63
Total 0 657 509 375 351

Other air charter permit activities

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Exemptions granted to the charter regulations 460 910 849 643 603
Amendments to charter permits 9 37 8 9 13

Air charter permits and notifications

Note: As of July 1, 2019, the Air Transportation Regulations (ATR) were amended. They needed updating to reflect market realities. The ATR’s charter types and the provisions regarding Canadian-originating charters, foreign-originating charters and permit and notification filing did not reflect the current practices and business models in this area. The amendments removed obsolete terms and consolidated the number of charter types from eight to four, based on whether they are for resaleable or non-resaleable passenger transportation originating in Canada, passenger transportation originating in a foreign country, or goods transportation.

The new way to present data on charter operation is more reflective of the business realities. Foreign and Transboarder (Canada – US) charter operations have to follow the same requirement from the ATR. As such the data won't point out Transboarder any longer.

Permits, notifications, and exemptions

  2020-2021 2019-2020
Permits - Approved by the Agency 395 657
Passenger non-resaleable 146 230
Passenger resaleable 1 65
Passenger foreign origin 124 235
Cargo 127 124
Notifications processed by Agency Staff 1521 1524
Passenger non-resaleable 566 738
Passenger foreign origin 458 539
Cargo 497 247
Exempted to apply for permit in advance 2 33
Ambulance 2 23
Cargo 0 10

Note: As of April 1, 2014, the Agency has granted certain carriers with an exemption to operate last-minute air ambulance and entity cargo charter flights following the Agency's elimination of its after-hour service. These flights were processed using this new approach and would have ordinarily been captured under air charter permits issued.

Railway infrastructure and construction

The Agency approves specific railway line construction projects. If a railway company intends to construct a railway line, it must file an application with the Agency under section 98 of the Canada Transportation Act for approval.

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Railway crossing agreements filed 2 6 25 25 127
Approvals - railway line locations and construction of railway crossings 2 2 0 0 1
Approvals - railway line locations on federal lands 0 1 0 0 0
Notices of railway discontinuance received 1 0 6 3 3
Net salvage value determinations 0 0 0 0 0
New, modified or cancelled certificates of fitness 33 6 4 0 6

Note:

  • A comprehensive process review resulted in a temporary decline in agreements filed with the Agency in 2014-2015.
  • Includes net salvage value estimates performed by staff under contract with clients.

Marine coasting trade applications

Coasting trade licences are issued by the Minister of Public Safety to Canadian residents who have applied for permission to bring a foreign flagged vessel into Canadian waters to perform a service or activity over a specified period of time. You must simultaneously apply to the Agency and the Canada Border Services Agency to obtain a licence.

The Agency determines whether there are suitable Canadian ships available to carry out the activity described in the application. If the proposed activity involves the carriage of passengers, the Agency determines if there is an adequate marine service using Canadian vessels.

The Canada Border Services Agency cannot license anyone to use a foreign-registered ship until the Agency issues its determination.

A coasting trade licence is issued when there are no suitable Canadian vessels available to perform the service or activity.

Applications processed

  2020-2021 2019-2020 2018-2019 2017-2018 2016-2017
Approved 29 61 73 102 108
Denied 5 3 8 2 5
Withdrawn 2 1 5 8 2
Total 36 65 86 112 115
Total contested 9 4 - - -
Total uncontested 27 61 - - -
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