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World Health Organization Ends Zika Public-Health Emergency Status

Zika first appeared in Brazil in May 2015.

Following a meeting of its Emergency Committee on Zika, the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO) yesterday announced that the disease and its associated consequences no longer present a public health emergency of international concern.

Removing the international emergency designation puts Zika in the class of other dangerous mosquito-borne disease, like malaria or yellow fever. The WHO committee, which is charged with overseeing the monitoring and coordinated efforts to combat Zika, stressed the need for continued research into the disease. Zika has been linked to congenital and other neurological disorders, and many aspects are not clearly understood.

WHO first declared a state of emergency on Feb. 1, and the virus has since spread to almost every country in the Western Hemisphere except Canada. For the travel industry, fears of Zika caused a fall in bookings to Florida, the Caribbean, Puerto Rico, Central and South America, and other vacation destinations, especially among travelers in their 30s.

But recently suppliers have been reporting upticks, as travelers beyond the child-bearing years seem to be less concerned about the disease. Just this weekend, for example, Scott Wiseman of Travel Impressions said his Caribbean business is rebounding.

Travel to the U.S. from Toronto Pearson During the Holidays
If you are traveling to the U.S. from Toronto Pearson Airport on a flight departing before 10 am, note that, because of the peak holiday travel season, wait times are longer than usual at U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Canadian Air Transport Security Association (CATSA) pre-board screening.

For this reason, travellers should arrive at the airport three (3) hours before their flight's scheduled departure time. Pre-board security screening for departures to the U.S. at Toronto-Pearson opens to passengers at 3:00 AM.

Wait times do not affect members of a known traveler program, such as Nexus or Global Entry.
Update: Entry Rules for Mexican Citizens
Effective December 1, 2016, Mexican citizens no longer require a visa to enter Canada by air. Instead, if your customers are Mexican citizens, they must obtain Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) before their flight.

Mexican citizens who currently have a valid visa, may continue travel to Canada with their visa until it expires, even after December 1, 2016. Mexican citizens with a valid visa do not require an eTA.

Please advise eligible customers to complete their application for an eTA. They will need a valid passport, a credit card and an email address. An eTA costs $7 CAD and is valid for up to five years or until your passport expires (whichever comes first).
Transiting Without a Visa Via China

If you are traveling to China with confirmed onward connections to another country, they may be eligible to transit China without a visa. For travellers to be eligible to transit via China they are required to meet the conditions below:

  • 24-hour visa-free transit
    • 24-hour visa-free transit applies to citizens of most countries and is available in most Chinese ports. For details on if you are eligible, please visit 24-hour direct transit
    • Travellers must hold onward tickets and confirmed seats to a third country on international airlines, ships or trains transiting through China may transit without a visa via China providing their stay is less than 24 hours
    • For Travellers to leave the specified transit zone, they may obtain a temporary stay permit at the immigration counter
  • 72-hour visa-free transit
    • Passport holders of 51 countries, including Canada and the US, can be granted a visa-free stay of up to 72 hours while in transit via Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK), Shanghai Pudong Airport (PVG) and 16 other Chinese airports
    • For details, please visit: 72-hour visa-free transit
  • 144-hour visa-free transit
    • Passengers of 51 countries, including Canada and the USA, are eligible to stay for up to 144 hours when transiting via Shanghai (PVG), Jiangsu and Zhejiang. They may move around these three cities for up to six transit without visa days
For details, please visit: 144-hour visa-free transit policy
Coming Soon! Montreal - Shanghai
Air Canada is introducing daily non-stop service between Montreal and Shanghai, starting February 16, 2017:
  • Air Canada is the only Canadian carrier to offer service between Montreal and the Asia-Pacific region
  • Ultra-modern Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft offering a choice of three classes of service
    - International Business Class
    - Premium Economy
    - Economy Class
  • Two free checked bags up to 23 kg (50 lb) each
  • Connect via Shanghai to South East Asia and enjoy up to 144 hours transit without a visa in Shanghai (restrictions apply*)
  • Priority Airport Services, our exclusive Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge and Concierge Service (available to eligible customers)
  • Schedules are timed to optimize connectivity across Air Canada's network
  • Collect and redeem Air Canada Altitude and Aeroplan Miles
*Travellers with international connections may be eligible for transit without visa in Shanghai if holding passports of Canada, USA and 49 other countries.
More new routes to Europe coming in 2017
Starting June 1, Air Canada will introduce daily Boeing 787 Dreamliner service between Vancouver and Frankfurt featuring International Business Class, Premium Economy and Economy Class service:
Flight # Route Departure Arrives Frequency
AC840 Vancouver - Frankfurt 12:25 07:05 +1 day Daily
AC841 Frankfurt - Vancouver 10:00 10:55 Daily
Starting June 8, Air Canada Rouge will launch service to our second London destination from Vancouver. Flights will be operated with B767-300 aircraft featuring Premium Rouge and Economy Class service:
Flight # Route Departure Arrives Frequency
AC1934 Vancouver - London Gatwick 16:45 10:25 +1 day Tue., Thu., Sat.
AC1935 London Gatwick - Vancouver 12:00 14:10 Tue., Thu., Sat.
Flex Stands for Flexibility
Will you want to do any one of the following on your next trip?
  • Make a change to your flight
  • Select your seat in advance
  • Earn more Aeroplan Miles
  • Check a bag for free*
  • Access the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge**
If you said yes to any one of the above, it may be more economical for you to select a FLEX fare. Flex fares provide the best value for the majority of business travellers.
With a Flex fare, you can reserve your complimentary standard seat at any time prior to departure, earn 100% Aeroplan Miles and benefit from lower change fees in case your plans change.

*First checked bag is free with a Flex fare when travelling within Canada, to SUN and international destinations.
**Access to Maple Leaf Lounge is available for a fee of $50 CAD
Spotlight on Flight Passes

Air Canada's Flight Pass products offer prepaid packages of one-way flight credits that can be used by individuals or multiple travellers for travel within selected geographic zones. Whether you originate in Canada or the USA, you can fly with flexibility because we offer a range of Flight Passes to suit a variety of corporate travel requirements:

  • Excellent value and travel cost predictability with guaranteed price per flight
  • Optimal travel flexibility and availability
  • Online booking convenience 24/7 and up to one hour prior to departure, includes changes and cancellations
  • Complimentary advance online seat selection
  • Can be used by individuals or up to 50 travellers
  • Upgrade at your convenience
Asia Flight Passes - Expanded flexibilty & Fares

Air Canada's popular Flight Pass products between Eastern or Western Canada and Asia have been enhanced to offer you many more choices:

  • Flight passes for one or two travellers are now available in our full range of fare options including International Business Class and Premium Economy
  • The Flight Pass for Business, has been further tailored to respond to the travel requirements of small and medium sized enterprises or large corporations offering anywhere from eight to 100 credits in our full range of fare types in your preferred class of service
  • Our Flight Passes to Asia now include our upcoming new Asian destinations: Taipei and Nagoya
Rapidair, the Flexibility and Schedule You Need
Air Canada's Rapidair service offers more daily flights between Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa than any other carrier.

No more waiting around at the airport when your business meeting ends early. Rapidair's flexibility allows you to standby for an earlier flight or change your booking outright:
  • Free same-day standby for an earlier flight - applies to all fare types
  • Same-day confirmed changes for an earlier flight at check-in:
    - Complimentary for Business Class (flexible) and Latitude customers
    - $75 with Business Class (lowest), Flex, and Aeroplan reward tickets
    - $100 with Tango fares
Rapidair also offers 30 flights every business day between Montreal and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, right in the heart of Toronto, and you will enjoy:
  • Complimentary premium bar service and snacks on board
  • Complimentary lounge access and free Wi-Fi at Toronto's City airport
  • Frequent shuttle bus service between Toronto City Airport and downtown (Fairmont Royal York Hotel)
Altitude Status Extension for Parental Leave
We recognize that life changes, and with it, so do travel patterns. Air Canada now offers the Altitude Status Extension for Parental Leave, a North American first. This unique privilege for new parents is one of the many special ways we accommodate parents and families.

Altitude members taking a parental leave can request a parental extension in order to continue enjoying the privileges of their Altitude status when resuming more frequent travel.

To learn more please visit: altitude.aircanada.com/status/overview
Montreal-New International Maple Leaf Lounge
Air Canada has a new International Maple Leaf Lounge at Montreal Trudeau Airport. The lounge follows our new international lounge design standards, offering a live chef station as well as a bar with bartender services and much more.
Press Release with photos.
AC Launched Toronto - Palm Springs December 14
Air Canada launched its new, winter seasonal route, Toronto - Palm Springs.

Flights will be operated with Air Canada rouge A319, on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.

This new Toronto route complements our winter service Vancouver - Palm Springs (Nov 13 - April 30) offered up to 3 x a week on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays
Reminder: Calgary Airport Now Participates in China Transit Program
Effective October 31, 2016, Calgary International Airport became the third airport in Canada to participate in the Canadian government's China Transit Program (CTP).

Because Air Canada is an approved air carrier participating in the CTP, travellers who are citizens of the People's Republic of China can now travel to or from the U.S. without obtaining a Canadian temporary resident visa - provided they meet certain conditions - when transiting through one of these three Canadian airports:
  • Toronto Pearson International Airport (Terminal 1)
  • Vancouver International Airport
  • Calgary International Airport
Air Canada flies from the following points of embarkation which are eligible for the China Transit Program (CTP):
  • Beijing
  • Hong Kong
  • Seoul Incheon
  • Shanghai
  • Tokyo Narita
  • Tokyo Haneda

Visit the Government of Canada website for a complete list of eligible points of embarkation.
Air Canada is also an approved air carrier participating in the Canadian government's Transit without Visa (TWOV) program.

Learn more about transiting through Canada without a visa.
Reminder: Airports Participating in the Canada Transit Without Visa (TWOV) and China Transit Program (CTP)

Air Canada is an approved air carrier participating in the Canadian government's Transit without Visa (TWOV) program and China Transit Program (CTP).
This participation allows Air Canada's customers who are citizens of certain Asian countries and who are transiting through either Calgary International Airport (YYC), Vancouver Airport (YVR) or Terminal 1 at Toronto-Pearson Airport (YYZ) to travel to/from the U.S. without obtaining a Canadian temporary resident visa provided they meet certain conditions.
Please note that customers travelling on AC17 and AC18 between Montreal and Shanghai must hold the correct documentation to transit Canada. Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL) is not a participating airport in the TWOV and CTP program. Therefore, citizens of the countries identified below must have a Canadian temporary resident visa when travelling on AC17 or AC18:

  • Indonesia, the Philippines, Taiwan (Chinese Taipei) and Thailand
  • China

Failure to adhere to the above will result in denied boarding when departing from the your point of origin.
Thank you for your cooperation.

Learn more about transiting through Canada without a visa.
United Polaris Launching December 1
On December 1, we opened our first United Polaris lounge to the public with the grand opening of our Chicago O'Hare (ORD) location. Considered the only lounge of its kind offered by a U.S. airline to business class customers, the lounge is getting stellar reviews in its opening days. United Polaris lounges feature custom-designed chairs for working or relaxing, private daybeds, spa-like showers, bespoke art installations by artist Wolfgang Buttress, and chef-inspired hot meals served in a boutique restaurant setting so customers can refresh and dine before boarding their planes. Premium sparkling wines, craft cocktails and refreshing snacks are also offered.
We start service to Havana, Cuba
United now operates Saturday, nonstop flights from Houston (IAH) and daily nonstop flights from New York / Newark International Airport (EWR) toHavana, Cuba (HAV). United is the only carrier offering service between Texas and Havana. Both services operate with Boeing 737 aircraft. Since the DOT announced its Havana routes in July, United has been working closely with the Cuban government and local airport service providers to prepare for the start of its operation into Jose Marti International Airport, United's 14th new international route launched this year and our 52nd destination in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Chic, Contemporary United Club opens at LAX
At more than 20,000 square feet, the Los Angeles (LAX) United Club is one of United's largest and most stylish. The location features a gourmet kitchen and bar offering expanded food and beverage options, seating areas conducive to working and lounging and spectacular views of the airport, the Hollywood Hills and the Los Angles skyline. The design also takes advantage of the city's gorgeous year-round weather, with a spacious and scenic outdoor terrace where customers can relax with a cocktail or a meal alfresco.
United Basic Economy for purchase in January
Responding to strong consumer demand for more affordable air travel choices, we are introducing Basic Economy, a new fare option for price-sensitive customers. Customers will enjoy the same United Economy cabin experience and services, including dining options, Wi-Fi and inflight entertainment, however Basic Economy fares have some important, additional restrictions compared to our standard economy fares. With a Basic Economy ticket, carry-on bags are limited to one personal item, automated seating assignments will be given at check-in and other restrictions will apply. Basic Economy will be available for sale in January.
WestJet circles for another go at NewLeaf with new Arizona flights
CALGARY - WestJet announcing new service to Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport from Calgary and Edmonton starting Jan. 19, 2017,

just two days after competitor NewLeaf introduced its 2017 winter sun program with seasonal service on the same route.

"We are proud of our expanding network of more than 100 cities in over 20 countries, and our reputation as an established, trusted brand with more than two decades of service to Canadians," said Bob Cummings, WestJet Executive Vice-President, Commercial. "We have provided hundreds of thousands of our guests with nonstop service between Canada and Phoenix since 2004, and now look forward to bringing low fares and our signature brand of caring, friendly service to our second destination in Arizona."

Just like NewLeaf, WestJet will offer three times weekly service from Calgary to Mesa (Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays) and once weekly service from Edmonton to Mesa, on Saturdays.

NewLeaf is already battling it out with WestJet in Hamilton, now that the Calgary-based carrier has brought back several Hamilton routes including Vancouver, Edmonton and Halifax as well as a new route between Hamilton and Winnipeg, where NewLeaf is based.


Should you have any questions or concerns, do not hesitate to contact:
Lucy La Vigna lucyl@worldviewtravel.ca at 416-649-9074 or Diana Ghegin dianag@worldviewtravel.ca at: 416-649-9073
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