TORONTO — Sunwing is extending the validity of its future travel credits (FTCs) to Sept. 30, 2026.
The move comes days after Sunwing, along with Canada’s other major carriers, announced the cancellation of its winter sun flights.
“There is no denying that the COVID-19 pandemic has taken an unprecedented toll on Canadians from coast to coast, and the entire world, and its timeline continues to remain uncertain,” says Sunwing in a statement issued today.
“As a result, Sunwing is pleased to announce it is extending the validity of future travel credits until September 30, 2026.”
All Sunwing customers who were impacted by cancelled travel due to the pandemic and who made non-refundable bookings will now be able to use their credits for travel up to September 30, 2026.
The company says the extension is intended to provide Sunwing customers with greater flexibility so they can plan their future vacation to the tropics with peace of mind.
The vast majority of Sunwing’s future travel credits were set to expire by June 20, 2022, however “travel restrictions and the global pandemic have gone on far longer than anyone could have ever expected,” says the company.
Sunwing says the voucher extension accounts for the uncertain timeline and travel restrictions currently in place. “Moreover, it will ensure Canadians, including those in smaller regional markets, can fully enjoy their future getaway at a time that is convenient for them.”
The travel credit extension is specific to those customers who made non-refundable bookings. Any Sunwing customers with cancelled travel as a result of the pandemic, and who made bookings that were refundable or partially refundable, have received refunds in the form of original payment.
The expiration date on customers’ existing future travel credits will automatically be updated, so there is no action required on the part of travel agents or customers. Travel credits can be redeemed when booking an upcoming flight or vacation package.
Speaking with Travelweek, Melanie Filipp, Sunwing’s Director of Corporate Communications and Media Relations, said yesterday that the airline is standing by agents and values their business.
“We know this is a challenging time and we empathize with our travel agent partners who are juggling financial strain, all while working tirelessly to guide customers through the ongoing travel restrictions and help them manage their upcoming or cancelled vacation bookings,” she says. “We are confident that, by working together, we will come out even stronger on the other side of this. In the meantime, we’re always here to lend a helping hand to our travel agents and address questions or concerns they may have.”
Announced on Jan. 29, in a move that took effect Jan. 31, Sunwing, along with Air Canada, WestJet and Transat, cancelled all flights to the Caribbean and Mexico through April 30 at the request of the federal government as part of ongoing efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and all its new variants.
Specifically for those cancelled flights Jan. 31, 2021 – April 30, 2021, all four airlines are offering the option of refunds.
Sunwing has secured access to $375 million of liquidity with a new loan announced by the Canada Enterprise Emergency Funding Corp. (CEEFC) and made under the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF).