Air Canada to Offer Service to Sarasota

Air Canada will come to Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport this winter, part of the airline's overall increase in service to "sun" destinations.

Daily service from Toronto is scheduled to start Dec. 19 and last through April 9.

Air Canada already serves Southwest Florida International Airport in Fort Myers. The airline will add a second daily flight from Toronto to the Fort Myers airport.

The airline said Monday that it is adding 10,000 seats per week to "sun destinations": Florida, California, Las Vegas, Mexico and the Caribbean.

Airport development director Michael Walley said he thinks the airline is benefiting from a strong Canadian dollar, which increases Canadians' buying power for Florida vacations.

The Air Canada service starts Nov. 4 with Saturday and Sunday flights. The weekend-only schedule will resume April 10 through April 14.

As a new carrier, Air Canada qualifies for a six-month waiver on landing fees, which will come to roughly $130 per flight, Walley said.

Air Canada will use a 93-seat Embraer 190. The airline boasts a setup that includes nine business-class seats and on-demand video in the seatbacks for everyone.

Passengers in both directions will clear customs in Toronto.

Sarasota-Bradenton has had Canadian service from CanJet. That airline is planning to increase its service from Toronto from four to five times a week, Walley said.

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