SUNBIZ | Tourism

Bula Canada, Fiji’s 20th Direct Flights Destination

“Canadians love to travel, especially in search for warmer weather during their winter months. Fiji is the ideal location with our tropical climate, the warmth of our people, and hospitality and service that is par excellence.”
10 Aug 2022 10:46
Bula Canada, Fiji’s 20th Direct Flights Destination
From left: James Pridgeon, Fiji Airways Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Andre Viljoen, Tourism Fiji CEO, Brent Hill, Attorney-General and Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum (fourth from right), Natalie Marletta (second from right), Airports Fiji Limited board chairman, Hasmukh Patel (first from right) with other executives at the Fiji Airways Premier Lounge before their flight to Vancouver, Canada on August 9, 2022. Photo: Nicolette Chambers

Fiji Airways promotional direct flight to Vancouver, Canada left the Nadi International Airport at 7pm yesterday. Canada is Fiji Airways 20th destination for direct flights.

The promotional flight carried a high level delegation led by the Attorney-General and Minister for Economy, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, Fiji Airways Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Andre Viljoen, Tourism Fiji CEO, Brent Hill, Airports Fiji Limited board chairman, Hasmukh Patel, executives from the Civil Aviation Authority of Fiji and senior Government officials.

Mr Viljoen said the promotional flight would grab the attention of Canadians and generate interest in the national carrier’s direct non-stop flights which commences on November 25.

“We are already seeing a positive response from the Canada market with bookings confirmed from November onwards,” he said.

 

“However it is a large market and we must make every effort possible to give our airline exposure and to capture international travellers from Canada who may not be aware that they can hop on our modern A330 aircraft and literally wake up in paradise.

“Canadians love to travel, especially in search for warmer weather during their winter months. Fiji is the ideal location with our tropical climate, the warmth of our people, and hospitality and service that is par excellence.”

“Our promotional flight will ensure that these travellers are aware of Fiji Airways direct flights when choosing their next holiday destination and of course a warm reminder of the Fijian diaspora that home is one direct flight away.”

He said the VIP delegation and industry partners would engage with stakeholders and solidify Fiji’s position not only as an attractive tourist destination but also a viable trade partner for Canadian businesses.

 

The A-G said that there was a lot of work that went on behind the scenes and homework done. He said Vancouver was a catchment area for former Fijians.

“With the $3million allocation that we have got in the budget we are hoping that it would also be able to give Fiji Airways the ability to market a lot better, in particular in the East Coast of Canada, Midwest Canada and of course there could be some northern USA traffic that can come to Vancouver as well,” said the A-G.

He added Fiji Airways had come out really well from the pandemic. Tourism Fiji CEO, Brent Hill said it was positive to see an uplift of tourists out of Vancouver and other parts of Canada.

“We are likely to be really busy through to the New Year and what we are really focused on is into our peak season from April onwards to 2023,” said Mr Hill.

 

He said the high bookings was fantastic news for the tourism industry. Former Fiji resident now residing in Calgary, Jerome Work said having affordable flights to Fiji allowed for families to easily reconnect with each other without the hassle of transiting to different countries.

“It reduces the length of the travel, allowing us to spend more time with loved ones,” said Mr Work.

“The money saved with a direct flight can be used towards more frequent visits, gifts or even pocket money when back home.”

 

Feedback: nicolette.chambers@fijisun.com



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