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You'll now be charged for checked bags on WestJet and Air Canada

Just days after WestJet was criticized by travellers for charging $25 to check a bag, Air Canada has quickly followed suit, matching the policy.

The country’s largest carrier announced that it was adjusting its first-checked-bag policy to “align it with prevailing North American industry practices.”

The new rules go into effect on Nov. 2, for any tickets purchased beginning today, on the lowest economy Tango fare for flights WEBSITEwithin Canada.

It will not apply to Air Canada passengers who purchase economy tickets under the higher Flex and Latitude fares. That policy mirrors Westjet’s, which also doesn’t charge for checked luggage for its two higher fare classes, Flex and Plus.

Exemptions will also apply to certain frequent flyers and those who purchase an Air Canada Vacations package.

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Both airlines say the new checked-baggage fee will only apply to one in five passengers.

Since 2011, Air Canada has charged for checked bags on flights to and from the United States. Air Canada says the checked fee will also apply to flights to and from the Caribbean and Mexico, though WestJet does not charge on those routes.

*Contributed by Toronto Star

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