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Air Canada or West Jet

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Wolverhampton
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691 posts
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Air Canada or West Jet

Part of my holiday plans include a flight between Clagary and Vancouver. Which of these two airlines would you use out of choice. There does not seem to be much in the way of price so its down to personal recommedation.

Vancouver, British...
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1. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

definitely Westjet - much more customer focused!

Vancouver
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57 reviews
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2. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

Westjet has been the better choice for the last few years. Better service overall with live tv in the seats.

However, I did recently fly Air Canada Calgary to Vancouver and they had larger seat back TVs with free movies and pre-recorded TV. It was pretty good.

Overall, I have almost never had a problem with Westjet, but have had 2 canceled flights due to mechanical issues on Air Canada and several lengthy delays.

Sechelt, BC
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for Sunshine Coast
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3. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

This is going to be an interesting thread – please remember this is just my opinion and experience but I say 100% Westjet. Reasonable fares and incredible unheard of prices during a seat sale – (flew to Cabo San Lucas for 328.00 return last fall out of Calgary) comfortable cabins, leg room ok, TV’s at every seat, pretty much always on time, never been bumped, no lost luggage, outstanding customer service and because I do not care about eating during a flight the snacks are not bad.

Outstanding customer service experience with Westjet: I was stuck at the Calgary airport not long ago because of dense fog. My 7:00 am flight became a 2:00 pm flight. The check in agents handled the situation very professionally and did an outstanding job keeping passenger tempers in check with open communication. It was a long day. The delayed flights caused a large passenger overload and it was realized not everyone was going to get back to Vancouver that day. Before I boarded my flight the Westjet staff was making arrangements for hotels, handing out meal vouchers and confirming flights for the next morning. I was wishing I did not have to get back – I could have gone for a free expense paid evening in Calgary.

Air Canada’s performance at YVR during the snow storms this past winter pales in comparison to what I witnessed in Calgary.

Winnipeg, Canada
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5,204 posts
20 reviews
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4. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

We have flown both of them recently to YVR. We made the decision on price. Westjet check-ins and customer service contacts are much better IMO, but it's not a critical differnce. I just have scars from AC......deep scars. LOL

Vancouver, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver
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54,856 posts
60 reviews
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5. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

Westjet. All staff are owners and therefore have a vested interest in the company doing well. The check in folks and the flight crews have proven to be helpful and competent.

There are a couple of airlines whose online booking procedures provide the information you need and are so straightforward, and trustable, I can't figure out why AC cannot seem to set up similar procedures. Just seat selection seems to be a huge hurdle for them. Having said that, I have flown AC on some non-stop flights which have worked out very well. But I'm always cautious about AC.

calgary
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3,958 posts
5 reviews
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6. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

WestJet, WestJet, WestJet - the interesting thing about these answers is that all the posters are from Western Canada; I'm sure someone from the east will chime in and say Air Canada is wonderful :-) As others have said, it's about the customer service, AC doesn't have any.

Vancouver
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5,614 posts
65 reviews
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7. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

I fly to Alberta frequently for business. Its such a short flight that I don't care if the ticketing agent smiles or not. I go with the cheapest fare.

Vancouver
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57 reviews
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8. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

One point:

The ticket booking and check-in procedures from YVR, Kelowna and Calgary are virtually the same for WestJet and Air Canada. I am not sure why people think otherwise. The only difference is that Air Canada has more pricing options based on refund/air mile conditions. For both airlines it is an additional charge for seat selection or you can pick your seat when you check in on-line (for domestic flights anyway). When you arrive at the airport both airlines have the same kiosks to print out your pass and areas to drop off luggage if needed.

But as you can see Air Canada has had a bad last 10 years of customer service and it has left a poor image in most people's mind.

For this distance I would book based more on price and departure times.

Canada
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34 reviews
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9. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

Book based on lowest fare for and convenience of departure time on this route. I fly both airlines and find that there are not many differences between them. Other than the Jazz (feeder airline to Air Canada, which flies some of the flights on the route you want) I prefer Air Canada's aircraft to Westjet's. It is a myth that Westjet offers lower fares. Both airline match each other very closely. The main difference between the two is that on Air Canada if you need to do a same day flight change you will pay a specified fee which is dependent one what kind of fare you bought--anywhere from $75 to $150--and NO fare difference. On Westjet, you pay a fee--I think it is $40--plus the fare difference.

Air Canada's service levels in my experience (about 30 flights so far this year) have gone way way up. They have some new people at the top who seem to understand what is needed. Westjet is very very good but you do get the odd person who forgets that they are supposed to smile, which is I think a factor of a fast-growing operation.

You won't go wrong either way.

Port Moody, Canada
Destination Expert
for Vancouver, British Columbia
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10,949 posts
136 reviews
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10. Re: Air Canada or West Jet

Westjet just flew AC to and from Saskatchewan mainly because of time I needed to be there..otherwise would have flown Westjet..service was ok.. but just.

I have heard their service is getting better as per art's post but I am one of those with deep scars as per previous poster.. I don't fly AC unless I absolutely have to