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Hurricane Beryl: How the storm is affecting Vancouver flights

Environment Canada issued rainfall warnings for Toronto and Montreal due to the storm
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The remnants of Hurricane Beryl caused flight cancellations and delays at Toronto Pearson Airport and YVR. Find out what Air Canada and WestJet are doing.

Canada's top airlines have issued new flexible re-booking policies for flights affected by Hurricane Beryl.

Environment Canada issued rainfall warnings for parts of southern Ontario and Quebec on Tuesday, July 9, as remnants of Hurricane Beryl are expected to drench the east coast until early Thursday.

Toronto residents were told to expect "torrential" rainfall of up to 40 millimetres per hour, while localized flooding is possible for Montreal.

Hurricane Beryl originally roared through open waters on July 2 as a powerful Category 4 storm heading toward Jamaica after earlier making landfall in the southeast Caribbean, killing at least six people.

Toronto's Lester. B Pearson International Airport (YYZ) says its flights to Mexico and Jamaica have mostly returned to normal since last week's disruptions. However, numerous flights have been cancelled on routes to some southern U.S. states due to local weather.

The National Hurricane Center (NHC) now classifies Beryl as a post-tropical cyclone over southeastern Missouri.

Vancouver International Airport (YVR) spokesperson Tanya Crowell told V.I.A. the airport continues to monitor Hurricane Beryl's path and is "aware of thunderstorms and hurricane winds that are causing delays for flights inbound and departing Dallas/Fort Worth International, Tampa International, and Orlando International."

What should I do if my flight to or from Vancouver could be affected by Hurricane Beryl?

Canada's biggest airlines have flexible change and cancellation policies for travellers booked on flights affected by Hurricane Beryl.

Travellers departing from Vancouver International Airport (YVR) should check local weather and conditions at their destination before heading to the airport. They should also check airport conditions in places en route to their destinations to see how they may impact travel.

Locals should also book travel insurance with trip interruption, trip cancellation, medical for over $5 million, and comprehensive baggage loss and delay. Passengers are advised to read the fine print of their policy closely.

WestJet hurricane policies

WestJet has instated its tropical storm/hurricane promise for guests affected by Hurricane Beryl. People travelling to or from the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston or Austin, Texas between July 7 and 9 may use the airline's flexible change policies.

Hurricane/tropical storm travel advisories are issued based on information provided by the Canadian Hurricane Centre or the (American) National Hurricane Center.

WestJet will allow you to do one of several options if you haven't left for your trip yet:

  1. Cancel your reservation: Transfer the full amount paid into a Travel Bank credit valid for one year.
  2. Change your travel dates (subject to availability) to the same flight number, origin and destination.
    • Choose an earlier date, or a date up to and including 14 days after the original departure date and WestJet will waive any difference in fare.
    • Choose a date of 15 days or more after your original departure date and normal exchange and refund guidelines will apply.
  3. Change your destination. Pay any difference in fare. If your new itinerary costs less, WestJet will give you a Travel Bank credit for the difference.

If you're en route to your destination or already in it, WestJet will waive change and cancellation fees. However, there are a few factors to consider.

  1. Return early (subject to availability).
  2. Cancel your reservation: WestJet will put the unused value of your reservation into a Travel Bank credit valid for one year.
  3. Continue travelling at your own risk. If you choose to continue travelling after an advisory has been issued you are not eligible for compensation or a credit or refund.

Air Canada hurricane policies

Air Canada has revised its ticketing policy enabling customers travelling on an affected flight to make changes to their booking without penalty, space permitting.

Travellers with affected flights can retrieve and change their bookings for free. If you purchased a holiday with Air Canada Vacations, contact them directly at 1-800-296-3408.

Air Canada guests are automatically enrolled to receive flight notifications to their mobile devices or by email. You can update your preferences online.

Flexible ticketing is in place for the following dates and destinations:

  • July 9: Montréal–Trudeau International Airport, Ottawa International Airport, Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, and Toronto's Lester. B Pearson International Airport, and Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport.
  • July 10: Montréal–Trudeau International Airport, Ottawa International Airport, Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, and Toronto's Lester. B Pearson International Airport.

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