Advice for spring break travellers
Wednesday morning, following the March 10 Ethiopian Airlines disaster, which killed 157 people including 18 Canadians, Transport Minister Marc Garneau announced Canada will ground all Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft.
This precautionary directive affects all three Canadian airlines, WestJet, Air Canada and Sunwing.
Although the Boeing 737 Max aircraft is a fraction of the airlines respective fleets the sudden grounding of more than 40 planes makes the rebooking process a massive undertaking.
The task happens in the midst of March break, one of the busiest travel weeks of the year.
Diane Manson, Travel & Cruise Consultant and owner of Kimberley’s Mountain City Travel noted, “Some travellers may experience a change in flight time or flight number. The routing to your destination may change. The airlines are prioritizing clients travelling within the next 72 hours. It is an evolving situation.”
Travel consultants are an integral part of assisting travellers with schedule changes, reorganizing and re-accommodating flights and hotel and train reservations affected by schedule changes.
“A wrinkle in anticipated travel plans can be trying. We’re darn lucky in the Kootenays; every client we’ve assisted has been patient, understanding and simply wonderful to work with,” Manson said.
She added a few words of travel advice: “Whether you’re checking in the Canadian Rockies International Airport or a large international gateway, airline personnel have their hands full, and then some. Ease the pressure for yourself and fellow travellers, check-in online and arrive at the airport well in advance of the airlines recommended check-in time. And lastly, remember a smile goes a long way too.”