Bereavement Fares and Traveling with Cremated RemainsJun 02, 2017
Travelling can be stressful, even at the best times. But travelling due to the death or immanent death of a loved one comes with its own unique challenges. On top of the emotional toll of illness or death, events such as funerals often can’t be anticipated far in advance, so travelers are left to book flights and accommodations last-minute. Travelling with a loved one’s remains can be equally trying, as there are a unique set of rules in place to follow.
If you have to travel for either reason, we’ve got some info to help your trip go smoothly. Below we break down bereavement fares and talk about some must-dos for travelling with cremated remains.
What are bereavement fares?
Bereavement fares are reduced fares for grieving passengers who are travelling last-minute. They’re intended to help make travelers’ journeys as straightforward as possible. Although many airlines have stopped offering bereavement fares, Air Canada and WestJet still do.
Air Canada bereavement fares
Air Canada offers reduced fares if you need to travel due to the death of an immediate family member only.
These flights are available on select itineraries for flights operated by:
A few things to note:
Bereavement fares are available for round-trip and select one-way bookings for international travel, and one-way bookings for travel within North America only. They can’t be applied to international business class travel, international flights in premium economy class, and flights operated by other airlines or Air Canada’s code share partners.
your trip needs to start within 7 days of booking for international travel, and 10 days if you’re travelling within North America. Plus, your maximum stay can’t go beyond 30 days if you’re travelling internationally.
How to book bereavement flights with Air Canada
Call Air Canada’s Customer Support at: 1-888-247-2262 or book at an Air Canada ticket counter.
To prove you’re in fact booking a flight for bereavement travel, you’ll need documents containing some pertinent information, for example:
WestJet bereavement fares
WestJet offers bereavement fares to people who have had a death in their family or are experiencing an imminent death. Unlike Air Canada, they also offer civic funeral fares: reduced fares for travellers going to a funeral for fire fighters, police officers, military personnel, or emergency service providers who’ve died in the line of duty.
WestJet bereavement fares are available for the following:
A few things to note:
West Jet’s fares offer maximum flexibility without fees, but they don’t include travel on WestJet’s partner airlines and require travel to be completed within a 14-day period. The airline encourages travelers to look for a lower price on their website before booking a bereavement fare, but these fares can be subject to a change fee, if applicable.
How to book bereavement or civic funeral fares with WestJet
Call WestJet at: 1-888-937-8538 (1-888-WESTJET)
You’ll need some additional general information at the time of booking. WestJet may call you if they need to know more.
For more details about WestJet’s bereavement fares, check out their website.
How to travel with cremated remains
While many may be travelling to attend the memorial of a loved one, some may be travelling to bring cremated remains to their final resting place.
Before flying with cremated remains, you’ll want to get up to speed on a few guidelines. The CATSA website has some useful tips:
Wherever you’re heading, whether it’s to attend the funeral of a loved one in another province or bring remains to a final resting place in another country, consider getting travel insurance. Emergency Medical Insurance will cover you if you have an accident or medical emergency out of your home province and a Trip Cancellation & Trip Interruption has got you covered for cancelled flights or missed connections due to weather, travel advisories and more.
Take care and safe travels,
Article courtesy of Sarah from Tugo
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