12 Low-cost airline battle heating up
Fledgling Canada Jetlines taking on WestJet Business
The ultra low-cost airline battle is heating up as fledgling airline Canada Jetlines prepares to take on WestJet’s efforts to regain its mantle as the country’s lowcost leader.
The upstart airline’s chief executive told an investor conference Tuesday that WestJet’s discount brand Swoop won’t be able to match its low costs, which will allow prices to average at less than $100.
“This country needs low fares. No doubt about it,” Stan Ganek told the Scotiabank transportation and aerospace conference.
But he said WestJet’s creation of a Swoop division just won’t cut it. “We all know that’s going to be a temporary measure and then rwighhetnbthacekcoumppaegtaitiino.nSios wwihpoe’ds out, guess what, the airfares go kidding whom?”
Gadek said Canada Jetlines will emvienriymthizinegcbousttspbilyotosuatnsodufrlciginhgt attendants. Tickets will only be available on the internet, which dramatically cuts distribution costs. That will enable the airline to fill its planes and make a profit on each departure.
By contrast, he said Swoop will be fighting internal resistance from people who are used to doing things a certain way, along with higher costs.
He said Canada Jetlines is prepared for a fight with WestJet and is prepared to take it to task for uncompetitive actions, as WestJet did when it took on Air rCeamnaadina ivne1ry99a6g.gressive in defending
WestJet countered that it will its market share.
CEO Gregg Saretsky told the hcoisntoferriceanllcyestuhpaptoCrtaendamdaorheathsna’nt the equivalent of 2.5 airlines.
He said the plans for three new startups including Flair Airlines and Canada Jetlines, along with Swoop and Air Canada Rouge, will make for a crowded market.
“With one ULCC already flying (Flair) and two seeking capitalization to start, that’s about two-and-a-half times more than the country can support.”
Saretsky added that WestJet won’t make Air Canada’s mistakes in launching Rouge in 2013 by ensuring passengers don’t get saenpyanraatsetywseubrpsirties,ecs.heck-in will
Flights will be booked on a be at a separate Swoop airport counter and the uniforms will beAairdiCffaenraednat ccohlioeuf fri.nancial
officer Michael Rousseau also told the conference that the country’s largest airline is watching the battle closely and is prepared to expand Rouge to compete, if required.
Canada Jetlines plans to start operations from Hamilton, Ont., and will add Abbotsford, B.C., in 2019 and hopes to fly out of Montreal down the road.
WestJet says it will aggressively defend its mantle as the country’s low-cost leader as fledgling airline Canada Jetlines prepares to take off.