Going to the airport used to be exciting. Now, heading to the airport for a departing flight means unexpected fees, overweight baggage and a number of stresses that make you want to scream, "Just get me on that plane!" For many, the unexpected airline fees are coming straight out of their vacation shopping and eating funds, and that's no way to start a holiday.
In the fall of 2015, I planned to travel from Toronto to Vancouver and back. I booked my outbound flight with WestJet, and the return flight with Air Canada, because the timing of those flights was most convenient for me. Then an unforeseen problem arose, and I had to cancel my trip. Each airline told me I could cancel my flight, pay a penalty (I thought it was $100 in each case), then apply the credit balance to another flight, so long as I used my credit within a year. Each airline, that is, except Air Canada.
There's no mystery as to why. Europe has the world's most open airline markets. Back in the early 1990s, the European Union made a move to full cabotage, allowing any airline in any European Union country to fly into any other nation, to schedule flights in-country, and to pick up and drop off passengers in that same country.
A tumbling loonie and rising air fare have created something of a double whammy for Canadian airline passengers as of late