Campaign to Inform Travellers of Language Rights in Canada’s Airports Takes Wing


Ottawa, January 8, 2014 – Commissioner of Official Languages Graham Fraser today launched a web-based campaign to better inform visitors to Canada’s largest airports of their right to be served in the official language of their choice for key services. The 12-week information campaign includes banners that will appear on popular travel websites as well as Facebook and Google.

“It’s important for Canadians to know they will receive services in either English or French when they go through major airports,” said Mr. Fraser. “However, people are uncertain about what bilingual services they can expect. That is why I want to get information about language rights in airports to the Canadian public.”

Federal institutions that have front-line services at airports must also serve people in either English or French. Examples of airport services subject to official languages obligations also include food courts, car rental companies and airline carrier ticket kiosks.

Fraser noted that there have been improvements in bilingual signage at major Canadian airports since his first observations of airport authorities in 2006, but there is still considerable room for improvements in the active offer and service delivery in both official languages. “The language rights of travellers are often poorly protected in some of the largest airports in the country, especially with respect to service delivery in French.”

Please click here to view the airport campaign information that will be available to the travelling public. Click here to view the results of the 2012 observations on bilingual services in Canada’s international airports.

Multimedia resources

Infographic on English and French in Canadian airports.

Social media



For more information or to schedule an interview with the Commissioner, please contact:

Nelson Kalil
Manager, Strategic Communications and Media Relations
Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages
Telephone: 613-995-0374
Cellular: 613-324-0999
Toll-free: 1-877-996-6368
Follow us @OCOLCanada
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