Friday,  August 7, 2020  7:57 pm

WestJet clarifies confusion over commercial import rules; says dogs don't have to fly as cargo

WestJet clarifies confusion over commercial import rules; says dogs don't have to fly as cargo
Christine Hogg

Christine Hogg is the Associate Digital Editor at PAX Global Media. Prior to joining PAX, she obtained her Honours BA in Journalism from the University of Toronto. Upon graduating, she went on to write for several travel publications while travelling the world. Her longest trip was a three-week stint in Europe, and the shortest was a 16-hour adventure in Iceland. Get in touch:

WestJet has issued an update on its existing commercial import policy regarding the transport of dogs.

The announcement comes in response to some confusion around an earlier release which stated that a "new" policy put forth by CBSA required any dogs identified as commercial imports to fly in the cargo hold.

READ MORE: Some dogs must be shipped as cargo in light of new CBSA rules, WestJet says

"It is our ongoing commitment to continue to work alongside rescue organizations and find ways to alleviate barriers they may face," said Morgan Bell, advisor, media & public relations.

"Our objective was to raise awareness that the classification of a personal import versus a commercial import comes with different CBSA requirements. This effort was to ensure our guests did not incur future CBSA fines or have rescue animals be turned away at customs as a result of not having the proper paperwork. It is the guest’s responsibility to understand and meet the import requirements, for both personal and commercial animals. The responsibility to meet the entry requirements and all associated fees related to the import of animals into Canada are solely that of the guest."

No changes at WestJet, nor the CBSA

There has been no change to WestJet’s policy or fees

Neither WestJet, nor CBSA, require animals travelling as commercial imports to go as cargo. 

"WestJet values our relationships with rescue organizations and sincerely apologizes for the confusion caused by our recent communications," Bell expressed in a statement to PAX. "We have reinforced our procedures to ensure upon booking that we ask guests, who are importing an animal, if it’s a commercial or personal import, and proceed accordingly."

More information on travelling with pets is available on WestJet's website here:

More information on shipping animals for commercial purposes, can be obtained by contacting WestJet Cargo.

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