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Canadian ultra-low-cost carrier Swoop announces big US expansion

Feb. 15, 2022
3 min read
Canadian ultra-low-cost carrier Swoop announces big US expansion
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The hottest place for Canadian ultra-low-cost carriers is apparently south of the border — in the United States.

Swoop on Tuesday announced a major expansion of its U.S. network, going up against rival Flair Airlines in many of the same markets.

Swoop, which is owned by WestJet, will go head-to-head with Flair at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and Chicago's O'Hare Airport (ORD), operating service from both airports to Toronto's Lester B. Pearson International Airport (YYZ).

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Swoop's service to Chicago will operate five days a week and begin on May 30. Its service to New York will also operate five days a week and begin on June 20.

Swoop is also adding Hollywood Burbank Airport (BUR), San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and Nashville International Airport (BNA) to its U.S. map. Burbank flights will operate to Edmonton (YEG) three days a week starting June 23, with San Francisco flights operating to Edmonton four days a week starting June 6. Nashville flights will operate five days a week to Toronto starting May 26 and twice weekly to Edmonton starting June 19.

Flair currently serves Burbank from Edmonton and Vancouver (YVR), and will launch service to San Francisco and Nashville in April, according to Cirium schedules data. San Francisco will be served from Edmonton, with Vancouver flights launching in May, while Nashville will be served from Toronto and Edmonton.

(Graphic courtesy of Swoop)

Swoop is also adding a new route from Las Vegas (LAS), with service to Toronto (YYZ) launching on May 20, operating four times a week. Swoop currently serves Hamilton (YHM) from Las Vegas. That airport is located about 40 miles southwest of Pearson Airport.

Introductory fares for Swoop's new U.S. routes are $78 USD each way.

More: Canada’s Flair Airlines adds 2 major US destinations

In addition to Las Vegas, Swoop currently serves San Diego (SAN), Palm Springs (PSP), St. Pete-Clearwater (PIE), Orlando Sanford (SFB) and Phoenix-Mesa (AZA) from airports across Canada. It launched its first U.S. flights in October 2018. Swoop operates a fleet of 10 Boeing 737-800 aircraft, and just announced it will be adding six Boeing 737 MAX 8s to its fleet this summer.

In addition to Swoop and Flair, the Canadian ULCC market will soon see two new entrants, as pent-up demand during the COVID-19 pandemic creates a leisure travel market in Canada that is ripe for growth. Upstart Lynx Air and Canada Jetlines both plan to commence service this year.

Featured image by James MacDonald/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
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3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
3XEarn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
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  • Intro Offer
    For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

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  • Annual Fee

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  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
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Why We Chose It

The Citi Premier’s 3 points per dollar spent across a wide range of popular categories is one of the more lucrative offerings in the world of points and miles. The Citi Premier comes with a $95 annual fee and is currently offering a solid sign up bonus of 80,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. It also has some valuable transfer partners to make the most of your rewards. Add in access to Citi Entertainment plus a $100 hotel credit for any single-stay hotel booking that exceeds $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through the Citi travel website, there are few reasons why the Citi Premier should not be in every traveler’s wallet.

Pros

  • Earns 3x points on restaurants, supermarkets, gas stations, air travel and hotels.
  • $100 annual hotel savings benefit (on single hotel stay bookings of $500 or more, excluding taxes and fees, booked through thankyou.com)
  • Points transfer to 16 airline programs, from JetBlue to Virgin Atlantic.
  • World Elite Mastercard benefits, extended warranty, damage and theft protection.

Cons

  • $95 annual fee
  • Lacks travel protections that other travel rewards cards come with
  • For a limited time, earn 80,000 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Restaurants and Supermarkets
  • Earn 3 Points per $1 spent at Gas Stations, Air Travel and Hotels
  • Earn 1 Point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Annual Hotel Savings Benefit
  • 80,000 Points are redeemable for $800 in gift cards when redeemed at thankyou.com
  • No expiration and no limit to the amount of points you can earn with this card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases