We are returning to Canada again in October this year (2010) after going in September last year (2009). Once again hubby and I are ducking over there alone and leaving the kids with their Grandad. The big family trip (3 months in duration) is now set in stone to happen in 2012 once our two older boys have finshed high school so as to not mess with their schooling.
We flew United last time...yes yes we know...people warned us....but now we know for ourselves and we will not be repeating our mistake. I was extremely unwell on the flights and received no assistance at all on the united flight between Sydney and San Francisco and on the way home was just as bad. The Qantas flights were great and the staff were lovely and very helpful and did everything they could do to try and make things better for me. The one leg of the united flight that was good was the little hop from San Francicso to Spokane and the return hop as well. Both times we got a really nice hostess who tried to help and make me feel better.
We have since found out that two airlines fly a more direct route to Canada. Air Canada and Air New Zealand both fly from Perth to Sydney and then onto Vancouver. So only two flights for me, which sounds like the best way to go for us after our last experience. Can anyone give me any feedback on these airlines in general and has anyone flown the route we will be taking? If so, how did they find it? How were the seats and legroom for example? Staff..were they nice or indifferent like the United staff? Entertainment on the plane? I have heard that the Air Canada planes have the individual screens in the back of the headrest in front of you...is that correct? I found that the best feature on the Qantas flights as I could concentrate on that and it helped me with my nausea.
I also need to ask if anyone ever needed to get mobility assistance in Sydney and/or Vancouver airports. I have a degenerative bone disease and find walking the distances between the gates trying to collect luggage etc excruciating and really struggled last time. It has been suggested that we ask for a wheelchair from one flight to the other within the airports. Is this just making our life harder or will this sort of thing happen and we still be able to make our connecting flights and collect luggage etc?
Sorry this has ended up so long. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
I flew Air Canada every now and then . they are OK, they can be helpful 90% of the times and not so helpful the other 10%.
I have flown from Perth to Toronto, taking Emirates and it was awesome because I only had to stop over in Dubai to which I usually don't mind. However if your final distantion is Vancouver then Air Canada will be better choice
Regarding the assistance between the gates , whether it's emirates or air canada you won't have problem if you make arrangement at the time of the booking.
I personally prefer Emirates for ultra long haul flights only because their in flight entertainment system.
Hope this will help
Thanks for that yydxb. I am off to check out how close we can get to Vancouver flying Emirates.
Just checked with Emirates and the closest we can get to Vancouver is Calgary and it would cost us $6100, whereas Air Canada is $4600 I think it was. The Emirates flight consists of 3 flights and the Air Canada is only two so we will stick with them unless something better pops up. Mind you the Emirates planes look awesome inside compared to all the others. We are planning a trip to the UK in the next 5 years and we are going with Emirates for that one so I am really looking forward to that now.
Have a look at Air Canada's cheapest flight into Canada (any city), then look at connecting with Westjet to your required destination. It might work out cheaper if you have the time and patience to do it.
I've flown both A.C. and Wj quite a few times. Both are good. When things go wrong, A.C. were much better than Wj, but then one is a full price airline and the other is (supposedly) budget.
Hi Flyingbob, Thanks for the suggestion.
We are planning on spending a few days in Vancouver and then hopping on a Greyhound to Trail, British Columbia where my family live. 12 hours of viewing pleasure on the bus, hopefully. We are hoping the landscape will take our minds off the bus ride, as we have told it can be uncomfortable. Considering it is only costing us about $80Canadian each we are willing to put up with seating discomfort.
We are looking for the best airline we can get with the shortest route from Perth, Australia to Vancouver, and of course we want the best price possible as well. After being silly enough to fly United last year we wont ever be making that mistake again and we were planning on returning to Canada with Qantas, but then we found the more direct route with Air Canada and Air NZ. I get extremely air sick and also have an arthritic condition which we found caused me a lot of problems trying to get around the airports on our trip last year so we want the shortest trip (least number of stops) but also mobility assistance within the airports as well.