The tail section of a Flair Airlines plane is seen in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Flair Airlines

Flair Airlines pulling out of Abbotsford as competition with Swoop takes off

Flair says no passengers will face cancellations as a result of the Abbotsford pullout

Flair Airlines Ltd. is pulling out of the airport in Abbotsford, B.C., due to a lack of passengers and intense competition from rival budget carrier Swoop.

Flair CEO Jim Scott cites an intense focus on the Abbotsford-Edmonton route by its competitor, a subsidiary of WestJet Airlines Ltd., resulting in a glut of cheap tickets.

Flair operates 12 flights between the two cities each week, but plans to stop in June. Swoop, Flair’s only competitor along the route, operates 16 flights per week in winter and 24 flights per week in summer.

Flair says no passengers will face cancellations as a result of the Abbotsford pullout, which will also end flights between the Lower Mainland city and Kelowna, B.C., Calgary, Winnipeg and Toronto.

Swoop unveiled a so-called loonie sale earlier this month, offering up to 100,000 seats for a base fare of $1 before taxes and fees. The sale disproportionately targets Edmonton-to-Abbotsford, which Swoop points out is its highest-frequency route.

Last year Flair opted to leave Hamilton for Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, just months after Swoop landed at the smaller airport.

In 2018, the Competition Bureau launched an ongoing predatory pricing investigation into Swoop and WestJet over allegations the two carriers used anti-competitive practices to crowd out Flair from at least three routes. Predatory pricing is when a company offers services below “avoidable costs” to hobble a competitor, along with an expectation to recoup losses through future price hikes, according to Competition Bureau guidelines.

Flair says it will use its two freshly freed-up planes to add new flights to Ottawa, Saint John, N.B., Charlottetown and Halifax.

READ MORE: Flair Airlines touts unlimited travel pass for $700 as competition heats up

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Flair Airlines

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

VIDEO: A message from Mission’s mayor

Pam Alexis asks residents to support local businesses, stay strong during COVID-19 pandemic

Mission developers donate $10,000, challenge others to donate as well

Gary Toor and Jason Tiegen gve the money to Mission Community Services, hope to raise $20,000

You can design a new banner for Mission’s downtown area

Mission Downtown Business Association is presenting its second annual banner design competition

One woman arrested in Abbotsford on Sunday after stabbing

25-year-old man sent to hospital with serious injuries following incident

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

COVID-19: 4 new deaths, 25 new cases but only in Vancouver Coastal, Fraser Health

A total of 1,291 people have tested positive for the novel coronavirus

COVID-19: Don’t get away for Easter weekend, Dr. Bonnie Henry warns

John Horgan, Adrian Dix call 130 faith leaders as holidays approach

COVID-19: Trudeau says 30K ventilators on the way; 3.6M Canadians claim benefits

Canada has seen more than 17,000 cases and at least 345 deaths due to COVID-19

RCMP call on kids to name latest foal recruits

The baby horses names are to start with the letter ‘S’

As Canadians return home amid pandemic, border crossings dip to just 5% of usual traffic

Non-commercial land crossing dipped by 95%, air travel dropped by 96 per cent, according to the CBSA

Logan Boulet Effect: Green Shirt Day calls on Canadians to become organ donors

While social distancing, the day also honours the 16 lives lost in the 2018 Humboldt Broncos Crash

COMMENTARY: Knowing where COVID-19 cases are does not protect you

Dr. Bonnie Henry explains why B.C. withholds community names

B.C. wide burning restrictions come into effect April 16

‘Larger open burns pose an unnecessary risk and could detract from wildfire detection’

Most Read