It looks like it’s not only Canadians who are angry with Air Canada for the carrier’s refusal to issue refunds for flight cancellations due to the coronavirus pandemic!
On August 21, the U.S. Department of Transportation released its July 2020 Air Travel Consumer Report, which contains a compilation of air travel complaints concerning things like delays, mishandled baggage and more for the month of May, 2020.
The report showed that Air Canada had the most complaints of any foreign airline (out of more than 80 foreign airlines) in the United States in May. Furthermore, the carrier also received the second most complaints overall out of any foreign or domestic airline in May.
The airline received a total of 1,705 complaints in May, 2020 for its refusal to give refunds. Canada’s other major airline, WestJet, received significantly fewer refund complaints than Air Canada with only 346. (The low number for WestJet is likely because WestJet has said that it would refund customers who booked U.S. or U.K. flights.) Interestingly, United Airlines was the only airline to receive more complaints than Air Canada with a total of 3,215 refund complaints.
Air Canada, along with most Canadian airlines, have refused to refund the majority of customers whose flights were cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic. The airlines have insisted that customers should be happy with travel vouchers saying that offering cash refunds is not economically feasible.