UPDATE: NewLeaf is issuing refunds and postponing service due to licensing complications. You can read the full story right here.
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The airline of your dreams is about to takeoff.
All-Canadian company NewLeaf is promoting ultra-cheap, non-stop flights beginning Feb. 12, and they’ll serve seven different airports in major cities across the country. For now, flights will only run out of five provinces: Nova Scotia, Ontario, B.C., Saskatchewan and Manitoba. As for the price tag? As low as $89 one-way, which actually includes all airline fees and taxes.
Now you’re probably wondering: What’s the catch? Well, for one, the airline doesn’t serve many of Canada’s major airports. It will only operate out of the following cities for the time being:
- Halifax, N.S. (Halifax International Airport)
- Hamilton, Ont. (John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport)
- Winnipeg, Man. (Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport)
- Regina, Sask. (Regina International Airport)
- Saskatoon, Sask. (Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport)
- Abbotsford, B.C. (Abbotsford International Airport)
- Kelowna, B.C. (Kelowna International Airport)
The other catch, which is typical of most low-cost airlines, is that the $89 charge will get you a seat on the plane – that’s it. If you want any other luxury, it’s going to cost you. It is good to note, however, that the more things you book online, the cheaper those services will be. NewLeaf raises prices for almost anything done in the airport itself, so plan ahead.
A personal bag that can easily fit under your seat, for example, is free to bring on, but a carry-on bag (anything besides your personal item or anything that will go in the overhead compartment) will come with a price tag. Carry-on bags will cost you $35 to bring on the plane if you just show up at the airport with it ($25 if you book online). Your first checked bag will cost the same. If you need to check more than one piece of luggage, the fees will rise ($35 online, $45, at the airport for a second, and $75-$100 for a third).
Now, when we said they’ll charge you for anything, we really meant it. If you have to get your boarding pass printed at the airport, that will cost you $10, so either print it at home or load your boarding pass onto your phone before you arrive. Any snacks or food you wish to eat on the plane will also come with a charge. Want to pick your seat? That’ll be around $20.
But when you consider these are all flights within Canada, how much comfort and food will you really need? NewLeaf definitely has some serious potential to help you save cash when flying domestically.
The cheapest flights it offers, meanwhile, will cover flying between airports in Kelowna, Regina, Saskatoon and Abbotsford. The more expensive $149 ticket is for flights from Hamilton to Kelowna.
So what are you waiting for? You can finally see all Canada has to offer without it breaking your bank.
And that ain’t nothing to apologize for.