Volume 95, Issue 27

Friday, October 19, 2001
 
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NEWS

The Belton tolls for Board of Govenors

Anthrax scare at LHSC

Brar, Brebnar suffer electoral defeat

Election results

Sept. 11 creates Christmas travel chaos

A/C guys pissed off and ready to picket

The world at war

News briefs

Sept. 11 creates Christmas travel chaos

By Jessica Leeder
Gazette Staff


Students trying to fly home for Christmas this year are not going to be singing a merry tune.

After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the U.S., the travel industry has experienced rapid downsizing and layoffs in many Canadian and international airlines.

The trickle-down effects of these changes are worldwide reductions in the flight schedules of most airlines and an extreme lack of low-priced, student-friendly fares, said Emily Barner, the Ontario Travel CUTS regional marketing manager.

"This year, the airlines are doing everything possible to cut back on spending. Lots of routes and budget seats have been cut back," Barner said.

Traditionally, December through to the first week in January is the peak travel time, Barner said.

Students looking for domestic flights are going to feel the burn when they have to dig deeper into their pockets to pay for flights home, she added.

Louise Wilson, a travel consultant for Travel CUTS in the University Community Centre said, at this point, getting a flight to Vancouver is almost impossible because fewer flights than normal are being offered and demand is high.

Some students who cannot get flights out west have been opting to take the train, which can take about three days, she added.

Short haul domestic flights have been reduced, according to Angela Saclamacis, manager of corporate communications for Canada 3000.

After the events of Sept. 11, many people have chosen to travel by car instead of flying, she explained.

"At present, we will operate a flight if it is profitable, but if it's not profitable, the plane won't fly," she said.

"Domestically, it all depends on what route you want – some have more capacity than others."

Barner said students needing to travel to less popular areas of the country, such as Newfoundland, are going to have the most trouble if they are inflexible.

Lyndsay Grundy, a fourth-year social science student, plans on flying to Yellowknife, Northwest Territories for her Christmas holidays.

She always has to fly standby because student rates are not offered to Yellowknife, but this year she anticipates having to pay more and have less choice than usual, she said.

"I fly standby because it's cheaper, but between the Dec. 15 and 25 it is brutal to get home."


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gazette.news@uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 2001