Calgary/Abbotsford (Brett Ballah/Western Aviation News) – Westjet has lost its bid to overturn a massive fee increase imposed by NAV Canada, the country’s air traffic control company.
Westjet flies into YXX Abbotsford.
NAV Canada is a private company that funds operations across the country and the North Altantic through airline fees. When the pandemic hit, air traffic plummeted and NAV Canada’s revenues collapsed. So in August, the company announced it would raise fees an average of 29.5%, to cover costs. The airline appealed the increase to the Canadian Transportation Agency, the nation’s transport regulator.
Westjet argued that NAV Canada didn’t follow the proper procedure to determine its new rates. “WestJet submits that since NAV Canada has a monopoly, its ability to unilaterally increase prices, which ultimately get passed on to passengers, can only be tempered through price regulation, an appeal to the Agency or full privatization,” the CTA said in dismissing Westjet’s appeal.
The increased fees are forecast to bring in an extra $242 million over the year.
“We are disappointed as third party fee increases only serve to undermine recovery,” said Westjet spokesperson Morgan Bell in an email.