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Winnipegger surprised WS bag fees charged in CAD on trip to U.S. but USD on return

Winnipegger surprised WS bag fees charged in CAD on trip to U.S. but USD on return

Old Dec 13, 18, 11:38 am
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Winnipegger surprised WS bag fees charged in CAD on trip to U.S. but USD on return

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manit...lars-1.4943434

A Winnipeg woman is crying foul over WestJet's baggage fees after being charged the same dollar amount — but in different currencies — on her way to, and back from, a U.S. golfing trip.

Michele Augert was returning to Winnipeg on Saturday with a group of six others from a week of golfing in Arizona.

On the way down, she paid $84 Cdn to check a bag and a set of golf clubs — $30 for the first bag, $50 for the second, plus $4 for GST. She expected the same on the return trip to Winnipeg — but got a surprise when she checked her credit card statement.

"Going back to Canada we were assessed the very same [$84] fees, but what came as a shock ... was that all of that was assessed in U.S. dollars," said Augert. "It translated to $115 Canadian."
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Old Dec 13, 18, 12:12 pm
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Originally Posted by tcook052 View Post
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/manit...lars-1.4943434

A Winnipeg woman is crying foul over WestJet's baggage fees after being charged the same dollar amount — but in different currencies — on her way to, and back from, a U.S. golfing trip.

Michele Augert was returning to Winnipeg on Saturday with a group of six others from a week of golfing in Arizona.

On the way down, she paid $84 Cdn to check a bag and a set of golf clubs — $30 for the first bag, $50 for the second, plus $4 for GST. She expected the same on the return trip to Winnipeg — but got a surprise when she checked her credit card statement.

"Going back to Canada we were assessed the very same [$84] fees, but what came as a shock ... was that all of that was assessed in U.S. dollars," said Augert. "It translated to $115 Canadian."
Why do stupid people always get quoted as news. Another reason why cbc should go bye bye.
The reason Westjet charged her in US $, is the same reason why her hot dog on the golfcourse was in US $. The transaction was in the State's, therefor it is in US $.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 12:43 pm
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In other news, "Vancouver man not at all surprised that person doesn't understand how the world works".
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Old Dec 13, 18, 12:53 pm
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Originally Posted by 5mm View Post
The reason Westjet charged her in US $, is the same reason why her hot dog on the golfcourse was in US $. The transaction was in the State's, therefor it is in US $.
However, airline passenger rights advocate Gabor Lukacs said GST aside, Augert wasn't treated fairly.

"The passenger was overcharged here," he said. "She was charged more than what WestJet's terms and conditions permit."

Lukacs pointed to WestJet's own document, which states "all fares and charges are stated in the currency from which the passenger will initiate travel."

WestJet acknowledged Augert's travel originated in Canada.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 1:17 pm
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Hmm I always took that to mean you pay where you’re starting your travel for that leg. On the way down they initiated travel in Canada. The return trip travel was initiated in the US. That does seem open to interpretation if that’s how it’s written.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 1:32 pm
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Originally Posted by tcook052 View Post
However, airline passenger rights advocate Gabor Lukacs said GST aside, Augert wasn't treated fairly.

"The passenger was overcharged here," he said. "She was charged more than what WestJet's terms and conditions permit."

Lukacs pointed to WestJet's own document, which states "all fares and charges are stated in the currency from which the passenger will initiate travel."

WestJet acknowledged Augert's travel originated in Canada.
As the statement "all fares and charges are stated in the currency from which the passenger will initiate travel." is in rule 80 "Application of Fares and Routing", it doesn't directly address ancilliary charges outside of the fare, such as baggage. WestJet doesn't charge for baggage inside the fare, but at the Point-of-Sale for check-in. Lukacs really needs to read the whole tariff to make sure he has the full context, especially now with his partisan lobbying as a consultant to Flair, as it otherwise just erodes any credibility he may otherwise have.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 3:29 pm
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Originally Posted by tcook052 View Post
However, airline passenger rights advocate Gabor Lukacs said GST aside, Augert wasn't treated fairly.

"The passenger was overcharged here," he said. "She was charged more than what WestJet's terms and conditions permit."

Lukacs pointed to WestJet's own document, which states "all fares and charges are stated in the currency from which the passenger will initiate travel."

WestJet acknowledged Augert's travel originated in Canada.

Lukacs pointed to WestJet's own document, which states "all fares and charges are stated in the currency from which the passenger will initiate travel.

But her trip was originating from the U.S. It is based on the ticket leg, not where it was purchased.
The GST is just a the Federal government money grad. They play with a different rule book, to collect more taxes.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 3:36 pm
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I just checked my trip to OGG last January. I was charged C$60.00 for 2 bags going (no GST unless it was embedded in the $60) and US$48.50 returning. At the then-prevailing exchange rate of ~$1.30, the difference would be about C$3.05. Not enough to be worked up about.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 3:59 pm
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Originally Posted by 5mm View Post
Lukacs pointed to WestJet's own document, which states "all fares and charges are stated in the currency from which the passenger will initiate travel.

But her trip was originating from the U.S. It is based on the ticket leg, not where it was purchased.
No, the contention Lukacs makes is that on a round-trip ticket this passenger's travel initiated/originated in Canada.

Originally Posted by Sopwith View Post
I just checked my trip to OGG last January. I was charged C$60.00 for 2 bags going (no GST unless it was embedded in the $60) and US$48.50 returning. At the then-prevailing exchange rate of ~$1.30, the difference would be about C$3.05. Not enough to be worked up about.
Interesting as that seems to be what the passenger in this article expected but didn't receive.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 5:03 pm
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Originally Posted by tcook052 View Post
No, the contention Lukacs makes is that on a round-trip ticket this passenger's travel initiated/originated in Canada.

.
Yes, he said that, but I read it differently. I have never flown on any airline that views the fare rules as Lukacs. Not all that Lukacs says it correct.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 5:15 pm
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Lukacs has a fiduciary duty to Flair Air.

The second he accepted compensation from the airline his ability to comment on such matters relating to other airlines as a “passenger advocate” became irrelevant and biased.

Unfortunately, Gabor is too naive to understand this and reporters are too lazy to recognize the conflict of interest. .

I sure hope he has a large bank account and a good lawyer because if he keeps this up, he’s going to get sued into the dark ages.
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Old Dec 13, 18, 6:58 pm
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Originally Posted by tcook052 View Post
No, the contention Lukacs makes is that on a round-trip ticket this passenger's travel initiated/originated in Canada..
Which is true as long as it doesn't land in the USA first.

Still, it looks like, from the other anecdote, they charge din US roughly the CAD equivalent so it's roughly even or did for him/her. I'd think a flight that boarded in Arizona could be interpreted as initiated in the USA, and someone else could say buying it in Winnipeg initiated it there. I solve this dilemma by a) flying only Plus if I fly WS and b) not checking luggage if I absolutely don't have to. Other than that, it seems not unreasonable that it's $X US in the US, so that's what they charge, so she should pay up.

I bet WS thinks the fee is something they can charge in notional currency (at least in the US) so they can get more dough and God knows they need more. Have not seen them charge 60 colones in San Jose which would be 10 cents US so it can't be just any notional currency. Do they charge 60 Sterling in the UK?
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Old Dec 13, 18, 9:34 pm
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Originally Posted by ricktoronto View Post
Which is true as long as it doesn't land in the USA first.

Still, it looks like, from the other anecdote, they charge din US roughly the CAD equivalent so it's roughly even or did for him/her. I'd think a flight that boarded in Arizona could be interpreted as initiated in the USA, and someone else could say buying it in Winnipeg initiated it there. I solve this dilemma by a) flying only Plus if I fly WS and b) not checking luggage if I absolutely don't have to. Other than that, it seems not unreasonable that it's $X US in the US, so that's what they charge, so she should pay up.

I bet WS thinks the fee is something they can charge in notional currency (at least in the US) so they can get more dough and God knows they need more. Have not seen them charge 60 colones in San Jose which would be 10 cents US so it can't be just any notional currency. Do they charge 60 Sterling in the UK?
They don't charge 60 pesos out of Mexico.

Their website (https://www.westjet.com/en-ca/travel-info/fares/service-fees) states that generally fees are charged in the currency of the reservation. So if the return flight is booked in Canada the fees should be charged in CAD or USD equivalence.

Last edited by calgaryhhr; Dec 13, 18 at 9:42 pm
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Old Dec 14, 18, 9:43 am
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More anecdotal evidence from a co-worker who last week flew YEG-LAX and paid the amount in USD on the return that roughly equaled the bag fees on the outbound in CAD.
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Old Dec 14, 18, 9:49 am
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1. The passenger initiated her travel in the US. just as she had initiated her first segment in Canada.
2. In any event and by its own terms, the provision does not apply to ancillary baggage fees.
3. Arizona is in the US.
4. The currency in the US is US$.

Starting threads quoting snippets from unreliable and incorrect sources only perpetuates poor information.
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