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Flights from Toronto

In cooperation with: Visit Mexico
Ontario
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349 posts
12 reviews
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Flights from Toronto

I have been looking at flights for our Jan 4-18 trip and notice that the flights with tour companies like Sunwing, Air Transat are a lot less expensive then West Jet and Air Canada. Does any one know why? I assume they are trying to fill up the plane, but what if they get more people wanting a package for that date? I assume they make more money on a package... so is there a risk that we will get bumped if we are only booking a flight?

Calgary
Destination Expert
for Akumal, Riviera Maya, Cancun
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1. Re: Flights from Toronto

Charter flights (e.g. Sunwing and AirTransat) are more likely to be affected by schedule changes than regularly scheduled flights. They will also cancel or amalgamate flights on fairly short notice. There have recently been a couple of postings about travellers with Nolitours (AirTransat) effectively losing one or two days of their vacation due to such schedule changes. I'm not going to say this never happens with regularly scheduled flights but it's much, much less likely.

Personally, I hate Air Transat with a passion but the sad truth is that sometimes I will suck it up and use them simply because their prices can be so darned good.

Sweeping generalization time - with charter airlines, you generally find that the closer you get to your departure date, the cheaper the price (assuming there's still space, of course). Conversely, with regularly scheduled airlines, the further out you book, the better the price. As noted, this is a sweeping generalization and you may find exceptions to both "rules".

HTH

Colo Spgs
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for Cozumel
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2. Re: Flights from Toronto

Llisa is right. I find that charters from Denver often drop airfare and package prices as you get closer to departure (within a month or so). My typical trip to Cozumel is done with less than a week's notice. I get cheap airfare and find a basic hotel to stay at.

Ontario
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349 posts
12 reviews
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3. Re: Flights from Toronto

Well now I am confused. We have alway booked packages for our vacations, so this is the first time I booked hotels and flight separately. Of course I checked to see that there were plenty of inbound and outbound flights available before booking hotels... and there are still lots left. The best prices for my dates are with Sunwing and Sky Service at decent times.(which I assume are charters) What has me puzzled is that someone said that charters are more apt to be switched around... and yet every charter we have ever taken (maybe 15 of them) has alway been right on time and date. Air Canada has a flight for a little more on special at a good time. How can I tell if it is a charter or a scheduled flight? I always book through an agent (research on line... find best price, and then book with live person for same price, but they get commission... I am alway for people making $$) I appreciate any suggestions.

Colo Spgs
Destination Expert
for Cozumel
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28,497 posts
2 reviews
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4. Re: Flights from Toronto

From this link:

http://www.aircanada.com/en/about/index.html

It appears that Air Canada is a scheduled airline (maybe not the right term) versus a charter.

This link suggest that they also operate a charter service but I have no idea how that works.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_Canada

Ontario
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349 posts
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5. Re: Flights from Toronto

Thanks CO_pilot54 Yes Air Canada is a scheduled airline, but they also offer Air Canada Vacation packages... you see here in Canada we only have a couple of scheduled airlines. Some of their scheduled flights for my date are over $2500 for 2 incl taxes... and there are some at really good times for half that price.. and then there are definate charters that are less again. I don't get it. I am sure we don't have the options of our US friends.. 1/10th population, 1/10th Airlines?

These are all non stop flights.. We are not willing to give up 2 full days for travelling. When we land in Toronto we have a 2 1/2 hour drive north through the snow to get home!

Colo Spgs
Destination Expert
for Cozumel
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28,497 posts
2 reviews
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6. Re: Flights from Toronto

I guess you need to see if the Vacation group is reliable. I use charters out of Denver and have been very pleased with them. Yes they may change flight times but I don't recall it ever happening to me. Personally, I would go with the half price option and if the flight times change just accept it.

Ontario
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349 posts
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7. Re: Flights from Toronto

Well that is what I am thinking... like I said, we have never had a charter flight change their schedule. I guess I have to make sure that we can't get bumped if we are not part of their vacation package. This is the part I am wondering about. If they are half price 6 weeks before departure date... then won't the lose out on profits if they fill the plane before they sell out the packages?

Colo Spgs
Destination Expert
for Cozumel
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28,497 posts
2 reviews
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8. Re: Flights from Toronto

I can't speak for Air Canada but all my trips are air only. I suspect that most people on those charters flights were using packages (air/hotel) yet I have never been bumped.

Winnipeg, Canada
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9. Re: Flights from Toronto

We book Air Only charters to Mexico all the time in the winter season. ( I started actually doing that when I used to travel solo before I was married) In about a dozen efforts we have never been bumped or even significantly delayed.

The big advantage for us, is that they are non-stop. We hate stopping over in a US hub airport. Air Canada prices (as well as Air Canada Vacations) are ridiculous compared to the competition. I have to say we are watching Westjet with interest as well.

Happy planning

Ontario
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349 posts
12 reviews
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10. Re: Flights from Toronto

Luv2travel - How long would you wait to book a trip on Jan 4th? (rooms are booked) West Jet is slightly more than the AC deal that is on right now at about $1300 return for 2, tax in (which is half the price of other AC flights the same day)