Canadians will find ultra-cheap plane tickets this fall

People line up at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport on August 5.Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press

Canadians looking to enjoy the fall colors this year will likely find plenty of budget-friendly options for flying to places like New York or Lake Louise in Alberta.

And the opportunities to fly on the cheap go well beyond the main foliage destinations.

Airfare prices often drop 10% or more in the fall from peaks in the summer, Christie Hudson, head of US public relations for Expedia, said by email. But this fall “economies should be even richer,” she added.

According to John Gradek, coordinator of McGill University’s aviation management program, increasing competition on domestic and Canada-U.S. routes and a likely sharper-than-usual seasonal decline in demand for leisure travel mean airlines drastically cut prices to fill planes.

How did the Pearson airport delays get so big? Inside the patchwork system that failed to stop the crisis

The discount is already well advanced. As of August 19, for example, Air Canada AC-T was advertising $86 one-way tickets for a flight from Vancouver to Calgary in October.

Toronto to Montreal? It’s $124 one way if you’re traveling on October 20.

Some special offers have already passed. No-frills carriers Flair Airlines Ltd. and Swoop Inc., a subsidiary of the WestJet group of companies, were offering discounts of 35% and 30%, respectively, off base fares for fall travel for bookings made during the week of August 1. 15.

Some price comparisons between summer highs and fall lows are particularly striking. Take the example of low-cost carrier Lynx Air, based in Calgary. A round-trip Toronto-Vancouver flight departing Pearson Airport on November 11 and returning on November 18 was advertised for $161.26, including taxes and fees, on August 18. The same route was priced at $867.93 with an August 26 departure. and return on September 2.

US airlines are also reducing ticket prices for the shoulder season between summer and holidays.

Round-trip airfare to US domestic destinations in September and October will cost travelers US$238 per ticket on average, down US$142 on average from summer and 3% less than in 2019, according to data from travel booking app Hopper.

A chaotic summer marked by airport delays and flight cancellations likely means many leisure travelers aren’t eager to get back on the plane this fall, which could force airlines to boost demand with discounts aggressive, Mr. Gradek said.

In Canada, however, cheap fall airfares also reflect a growing supply of flights and routes to domestic and U.S. destinations, he added.

“There are many more seats available in the Canadian market this fall than there have been in the past few years,” he said.

The result is a “sale of North American seats” that will likely last until late November or early December, he added.

Lynx, which made its maiden flight in April, currently flies to 10 Canadian destinations. Canada Jetlines, which announced Aug. 18 that it has received final license approval from Transport Canada, is expected to soon join the growing ranks of the country’s ultra-low-cost carriers serving destinations including Toronto, Moncton, NB and PEI. -of Prince Edward Island.

Swoop’s fall and winter plans include increasing flight frequencies to its most popular routes starting in November, the company said. The airline said it added 11 new destinations in Canada and the United States this summer.

Porter Airlines, which has ordered 50 E195-E2 passenger jets from Brazilian aircraft maker Embraer SA, said in July it expected the first of the new planes to be delivered and enter service in the second half of the year. 2022. The new aircraft will be deployed to destinations across Canada, the United States, Mexico and the Caribbean, the company said.

Still, with competition among Canadian carriers focusing primarily on North American routes, deals might not be as impressive on longer international flights, Gradek said.

And consumers tempted by extra low prices will have to weigh the risk of lingering bottlenecks at airports and further travel disruptions from a possible resurgence of the COVID-19 virus as the weather turns cold.

Between June 1 and August 17, about half of flights from Toronto Pearson International Airport and Montreal-Trudeau International Airport arrived with a delay, according to data compiled by the flight tracking site FlightAware.

With passenger traffic dropping in the fall, airport congestion will likely ease a bit, Gradek said. It also helps that new hires at airports and airlines who started work in early summer have three or four months of experience by fall, he added.

“I have my fingers crossed that as experience levels increase and passenger volume decreases, this will be a combination that will essentially get airports back to a reasonable routine.”

Are you a young Canadian with money on your mind? To set you up for success and avoid costly mistakes, listen to our award-winning Stress Test podcast.

#Canadians #find #ultracheap #plane #tickets #fall

Leave a Comment