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Air Canada Special Assistance

Air Canada requires you to provide advance notice in respect of any special assistance required or if you have any medical condition. This advance notice shall be at least 48 hours before scheduled departure of flight (72 hrs in case of certain flights). There is also a requirement that the passengers with any of these conditions shall also arrive 60 minutes ahead of scheduled check-in time of the airline.

While flying between USA and Canada, the following 8 conditions do require advance notice and early arrival for check-in. 

  • Medical oxygen or POC is required.
  • Electric wheelchair bound and flying on an airplane less than 60 seats.
  • Flying with a dog as emotional support or service animal.
  • Severe hearing and visual impairement.
  • Group of 10 or more people with disability
  • Require Air Canada to provide packaging for hazardous materials, such as for battery of wheelchair
  • Having service animal on flight segment which will take more than 8 hours of flight time
  • Allergic to peanuts and animals and would want a buffer zone

When flying to/from other destinations, passengers need to inform in advance in cases of being anaemic, fracture, cognitive impairement, epilepsy, heart or lung disease, infectious disease, DVT, major medical issue, surgery, carrying an infant, carrying an unaccompanied minor with medical issues and some others.

Mobility Assistance 

You can carry the following mobility aids without paying any sum, either as cabin baggage or checked in baggage- wheelchairs, scooters, braces, canes, crutches, walkers, communication devices such as display boards and text-to-speech communication aids, prostheses, battery powered mobility aids subject to limitations of space and proper handling of dry or spillable batteries. You are required to fill a form for carrying battery powered mobility aiding devices.

Obese Passengers and Special Seating

 Special seating might also be required by passengers. This might be in the form of extra seats due to obesity,  liftable or removable armrests, seats having additional floor space and with proximity to wash rooms and exits.

Service and Emotional Support Animals

Service animals have to be harnessed all the time. If not, then it shall be held on a leash. 

You also need to provide proof that this is indeed a service animals. Identification proof is required. You also have to carry the tags for your animal.  They are required to inform the carrier at least 48 hours before departure of flight that such animals are required to be carried.

Air Canada accepts only dogs as emotional or psychiatric support animals. Supporting documentation in form of original letter of licensed mental health professional and which is not more than 1 year old, shall mention the following:

  • that the passenger has mental disability as provided in DSM-IV
  • dog is needed for emotional or psychiatric support
  • document is prepared by licensed mental health professional
  • passenger is under the care of that mental health professional. 
  • letterhead shall also bear the license or registration number of the doctor

Unaccompanied Minors (UM) 

Air Canada takes special care to carry unaccompanied minors to their destinations. However, the services for the UMs are available only on the non-stop flights and these flights shall be operated by Air Canada, Air Canada rouge and Air Canada Express. This service is not available for code share or connecting flights and for children below 8 years of age. For children from 8 to 11 years of age, the UM service is a must if they are traveling alone. For children in age group of 12 to 17 years, this service is optional.

The service costs CAD/USD 100 for each child per flight.

Child is generally seated at the last three rows of seats which are closer to the cabin crew so that they can keep an eye on him or her.

During the check in process, UMs are required to produce original identification documents (passport in case of USA and a birth certificate, health card or other government ID card while in Canada)

Pregnant Women

Expectant mothers are allowed to fly on Air Canada flights up to 36 weeks of pregnancy provided they have not had any premature deliveries before.

Visual and Hearing Impaired

Visually impaired passengers are given instructions on safety by the crew members. On all aircrafts, the flight attendants also give instructions in Braille.

Deaf or hearing impaired passengers can also use toll free helpline 1-800-361-8071 if you have a telecommunications device for the deaf. 

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