Canadians have it rough. Our airport taxes alone cost more than airline tickets for friends down south of the border. In fact, flights are so expensive, it is worth buying two one-way tickets, even if the base fare is the same, because fewer taxes apply for our friends down south. So, when I realize that there is a fare war brewing in Canada with Porter Airlines, and multiple other carries, it brings a smile to my face.

Air Canada and WestJet Launch Their Sale

Air Canada, WestJet and Porter all came out with a Boxing Day offer. Initially, Air Canada and WestJet were both at a 20% discount. 20% discount is about as high as it gets for Canadian carriers, and we see them during popular sale dates, such as Boxing Day, Thanksgiving and Canada Day. Air Canada and WestJet sale was until December 28, 2023.

Fare Wars Brewing in Canada

WestJet Initial Offer

Air Canada and WestJet Match Porter Airlines Sale

Porter, however, announced a 15-25% off sale, tiered based on day of departure and fare type, expiring on January 1, 2024. I am not sure when, but the next morning I went to book some flights on Air Canada, and I noticed both Air Canada and WestJet announcing 25% discount instead. However, neither airline updated their offer expiry date, both of which expired on Dec 28, 2023.

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Revised offer from WestJet matching Porter Airlines

I expected the sale to be extended to January 1, 2024. However, when I went to book some flights on the evening of December 28, 2023, the sale was no longer showing on either Air Canada or WestJet.

The next morning, I decide to book my flight, thinking I have 24 hours for Air Canada to match the Porter Airlines sale. When I go to AirCanada.com, I am pleasantly surprised to see them already matching Porter’s offer. The new offer expiry date is January 1, 2024. WestJet still had not announced their offer yet.

When Air Canada launched their sale, they had far more complicated terms. Clearly indicating which cities the offer is applicable, as well as particular states in USA. Some notable exceptions were flights from Vancouver to Calgary. Porter did not fly that route, so the discount was not offered on that route.

WestJet Beats Porter Airlines Offer

Today, I noticed, WestJet announced their sale. They launched it with simpler offer terms. they will extend this deal to anywhere in Canada and select destinations in the US. What is ironic though, Porter is only discounting by 25% on Monday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. WestJet are doing the discount every day.

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It goes without saying, select destinations in the USA, are really those destinations also served by Porter.

Air Canada Matches WestJet Offer

Now, when I look at Air Canada, even they updated their offer to align with the WestJet offer.

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Conclusion

Ultimately, Porter has been an incredible development in the Canadian aviation space. I have not yet had a chance to fly them, however, all my clients, up until now, have all received complimentary upgrades to Porter Reserve. My only conclusion, flight’s are not that full.

Having a glance on Vancouver to Toronto for next week, during peak Christmas period, Porter is significantly cheaper than Air Canada or WestJet.

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I think Air Canada and WestJet have a lot to be worried about. Porter is a significantly better flying experience than any of those airlines, especially if you do not hold elite status with Air Canada or WestJet.