‘It’s going to be a hit for us for sure’: Air Canada’s cancelled flights to Saskatoon costs local businesses

The cancellation of Air Canada flights between Saskatchewan’s two largest cities and Calgary in December has meant dollars lost for businesses in Saskatoon.

Discover Saskatoon says two major business events scheduled to be held in the Bridge City have already been cancelled because of a lack of connectivity.

“Just those two pieces of business alone were about $300,000 worth of loss, economic impact into the community. There’s definitely a broader economic impact that we’re seeing beyond that,” said executive director Steph Clovechok.

She says the perception of Saskatoon being difficult to access could also put events like the Junos, which was cancelled in 2020 because of the pandemic, in jeopardy.

“We’ve got a couple of pieces of business in the pipeline that are equally significant to events like the Junos that will showcase our culture, music and our hosting capacity, and absolutely that’s always going to be a conversation,” said Clovechok.

TCU Place sales manager Joan Fior says rather than connecting flights from Calgary, people are having to fly to Vancouver, Toronto or Montreal to get to Saskatoon.

She says costing people more time and money to get to the city makes it more difficult for the convention centre, which is booking events as far into the future as five years.

“It’s a really important segment for our business,” said Fior.

“We typically do anywhere from eight to 10 large national conventions a year and one to two international. So, if we don’t have that business, yeah, it’s going to be a hit for us for sure.”

Chamber of Commerce CEO Jason Aebig says there’s a spin-off of people not making their way to Saskatoon for meetings.

“The ripple effect of that, from spending with our taxis and our

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A family of 4 spent a 17-day European vacation without their bags after Air Canada lost their luggage

View of buildings in Rome cast in sunlight and a light blue sky

The Gomez family traveled to Rome from San Diego on Air Canada.Sandro Pavlov/Shutterstock

  • Air Canada lost a family of four’s luggage on their journey from San Diego to Rome.

  • Steve Gomez said they had to spend almost $1,600 on replacement clothes and other items.

  • He said he may have to take legal action against the airline to recoup the expenses.

A California family were forced to spend almost $1,600 on new clothes after having to spend their entire European vacation without any luggage.

In June, Steve Gomez, his wife, and his two sons embarked from San Diego on a 17-day trip to Europe, which included a seven-day cruise.

They flew on Air Canada via Toronto to Rome and their flights suffered only minor delays.

While they made it to the Italian capital on June 18, their luggage did not.

Gomez contacted Aviapartner, which handles the airline’s baggage, to report their missing bags.

Gomez told Insider: “Having zero luggage for four people, we had to spend a few hundred dollars in the first two days just to have enough clothing to make it to the next day. Our travel plans were to stay in Rome for two nights, then boarding a seven-day cruise from Rome.”

According to Air Canada’s baggage tracker, their luggage got to Rome the following day.

But Gomez said: “It was impossible to reach a human. The partner phone either resulted in a busy signal or never answered and no emails were answered. The system is designed to hang up on callers when the hold time reaches 61 minutes.”

Insider reviewed bank statements and booking receipts showing that the family spent almost $20,000 on their holiday.

The family spent almost $1,600 on new clothes, toiletries, suitcases and laundry expenses.

A photo taken in Rome during the family's vacation.

The Gomez family visited Rome

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