MONTRÉAL, Aug. 29, 2018 /CNW/ - As of August 29, 2018, pets are now welcome on board VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) trains in the Québec City – Windsor Corridor. In an effort to meet its customers' ever-evolving needs, VIA Rail has updated its pet transportation policy to allow small cats and dogs to accompany their owners in passenger cars.
"For many travellers, pets play an important role in their lives, bringing them comfort and presence—just like family. We understand that being away from your pet can be difficult. For this reason, VIA Rail has reviewed its policy to allow passengers to travel with their pet," said VIA Rail Canada President and Chief Executive Officer Yves Desjardins-Siciliano. "Starting today, we welcome small cats and dogs aboard our trains. These pets can be emotional support pets, or simply, a loyal friend. With that being said, we want to make sure that our changes reflect our passengers' evolving needs and improve the overall on board experience. In the following months, we will monitor the situation to ensure peaceful cohabitation between all travellers and will make adjustments as needed."
Pets must be transported in a hard or soft-sided, leak-proof and well ventilated carrier measuring a maximum of 55 x 40 x 27 cm (21.5 x 15.5 x 10.5 in.), which will be placed at the passenger's feet. The pet must remain in the carrier and be attended to for the entirety of the trip. Additionally, pets must be able to stand up, turn around and lie down comfortably.
Reservations for pet travel is booked on a space-available basis, as the maximum pets per departure will be calculated by train. Travellers who wish to use this service must contact a customer service representative at 1 888 VIA‑RAIL (1 888 842‑7245) or 1 800 268‑9503 (TTY for persons who are hard of hearing), at least 48 hours before departure. The service costs $50 plus applicable taxes per direction. Passengers may purchase an additional seat at the applicable rate for extra space. Pets can still be transported in the baggage car.
Please note that certified guide and service dogs individually trained to perform tasks that provide assistance related to a passenger's disability, continue to travel free of charge in passenger cars.
To ensure everyone's comfort and well-being, accommodation measures will be taken on board the train in the event that another passenger with allergies is seated near a pet.
VIA Rail's pet transportation policy is available at: viarail.ca/en/travel-info/travelling-with-pets-onbaord-in-passenger-car
About VIA Rail Canada
As Canada's national rail passenger service, VIA Rail (viarail.ca) and all its employees are mandated to provide safe, efficient and economical passenger transportation service, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional and transcontinental trains linking over 400 communities across Canada, and about 180 more communities through intermodal partnerships, and safely transports nearly 4.4 million passengers annually. The Corporation has been awarded five Safety Awards and three Environment Awards by the Railway Association of Canada since 2007. Visit the "About VIA Rail" section at: www.viarail.ca/en/about-via-rail.
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For further information: Mylène Bélanger, Media Relations, VIA Rail Canada, 1 877 393-8787, VIA Rail Canada, email@example.com