Saturday, May 18, 2024

International bound: Flair Airlines not servicing Victoria while owing CRA $67 million

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Some people trying to plan a summer getaway may have noticed that when it comes to domestic flights, things are a bit more expensive.

Since Swoop shut down their operations and their fleet were absorbed by their parent company WestJet, the only real option for cheap travel—especially when flying in or out of Victoria—has been Flair Airlines.

However, the company has recently been making headlines across the nation when it was revealed that Flair Airlines owes the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) over $67 million in unpaid taxes. 

This information came to light soon after the company announced that they were looking at expanding their 20-plane fleet to 26 in order to serve more Canadians. 

Despite this information being circulated by several Canadian media sources, the company insists it isn’t going anywhere, they have just changed how they are serving their customers. 

“As any airline, we have a winter and summer schedule,” said a Flair Airlines spokesperson.  

“To meet the demand of Canadians wanting to visit sun destinations during the winter, our fleet and network shifts to run to more international destinations during the winter season and we continued to serve our domestic routes simultaneously.”

The company says that at the beginning of March, they switch back to a summer schedule; however, when one tries to book a flight out of the Victoria International Airport (YYJ), this does not seem to be the case. 

Currently, for those looking to fly Flair Airlines out of YYJ, there are no Flair flights servicing YYJ until May at the earliest to most major Canadian cities. 


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Flair Airlines insists that the reduction in service between Canadian cities doesn’t have anything to do with their CRA payments and that it is because they are flying further, to international, sunny destinations rather than more frequently between Canadian cities. 

“We are flying further than we did last year so naturally we have fewer departures to meet the demand of further destinations,” said Flair Airlines. 

Although it was reported that they had 20 aircraft in service just recently, they have admitted that they are now operating with 18 aircraft now. Flair did not specify why they are now two planes down in their fleet. 

Flair Airlines also specified that they have not had to reduce their staff whatsoever. 

“We have delivered on our promise to bring affordable and accessible air travel to Canadians and we only plan to continue to deliver that throughout 2024,” Flair Airlines said in closing. 

Beginning in May, Victorians can book flights through Flair on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. 

mm
Curtis Blandy
curtis@victoriabuzz.com

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