Survey finds 70% of Canadians believe competition among Canadian airlines is important

A vast majority of Canadians believe a competitive airline industry is critical to the country’s economic recovery, according to a new national survey.

The Nanos Research survey, commissioned by Flair Airlines, also found that Canadians believe providing lower-cost flights is an important contributor to the national interest and making Canada a stronger country. More than that, the survey revealed a strong majority of Canadians support access to flights for under-serviced communities and increasing competition across Canada in the airline industry.

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The results are part of a hybrid online and telephone omnibus survey of 1,001 Canadians aged 18 years and older, conducted by Nanos Research between May 17-19, 2020. The margin of error for this survey is 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

“Flair is very proud to offer Canadians a discount option for air travel,” said Jim Scott, CEO of Flair Airlines. “We are pleased that Canadians see discount airlines as important contributors to the economic recovery and that they will want more options, not fewer, when they feel comfortable to travel again.”

Meanwhile, the Nanos survey showed that as the economy begins its restart and life gets back to a new normal, there is still very much a sense of trepidation as a majority of Canadians say they will be nervous about flying until there is a vaccine.

“Our customers and our staff are the reason we exist,” said Scott. “We are working hard to invest in and maintain safe operations for when confidence returns, and Canadians are ready to fly. Once we can secure the support required from the federal government, we are looking forward to flying together soon.”

Key findings include:

Three times as many Canadians say they need more rather than fewer airline options.

Asked whether Canada has the right number of airline carriers when COVID-19 travel restrictions are relaxed, 36 per cent of Canadians said they need more options compared to 11 per cent who said they need less.

Canadians most frequently say that having a competitive airline industry to help the economic recovery is an important or somewhat important contributor to the national interest

More than four in five Canadians say that having a competitive airline industry to help the economic recovery is an important (47 per cent) or somewhat important (39 per cent) contributor to Canada’s national interest.

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A majority of Canadians think that discount airlines play an important role in the Canadian air travel industry.

More than eight in 10 Canadians agree (47 per cent) or somewhat agree (35 per cent) that discount airlines play an important role in the Canadian air travel industry.

Three quarters of Canadians agree or somewhat agree that they will be nervous about flying until a vaccine is developed for COVID-19.

Nearly three in four Canadians agree (44 per cent) or somewhat agree (30 per cent) they would be nervous about flying until there is a vaccine to protect them from COVID-19. Intensity of worry is stronger among older Canadians (84 per cent agree or somewhat agree compared to 65 per cent of Canadians aged 18 to 34).

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