On my recent trip to Toronto, I flew there on WestJet and back on Air Canada. I didn’t specify that arrangement, it’s just the way our travel agent ended up booking the trip. From now on though, I think I’ll specify WestJet. I think I have preferred WestJet to Air Canada for quite some time now, but it wasn’t until this last trip that I actually reflected on why. I think it’s because WestJet does a better job of the details than Air Canada, you know, the little things.
Don’t get me wrong, there’s lots of other reasons that WestJet is better. You know, lower price, a TV in front of every seat, no business class (as far as I know), and well, they are almost always on time. Even on this last trip our WestJet flight arrived on time while the Air Canada flight was late – a good half hour late. Despite these things however, I think the details are more important:
- WestJet flights have normal headphone jacks! There’s a reason I have expensive, noise-cancelling headphones, and I can use them on WestJet. Air Canada, for some reason, does not have standard headphone jacks meaning you have to use their crappy ones.
- Ever laugh on an Air Canada flight? It’s rare, I know. With WestJet, the crew always seems happy and usually make a few jokes at the beginning and end of the flight. Goes a long way to keeping everyone happy.
- Comfortable leather chairs on WestJet, uncomfortable cloth on Air Canada.
- I love how the controls (light, air, etc) are easily reachable on a WestJet flight, while they are impossibly far away on Air Canada – instead of being right overhead, they are above the seat in front of me almost!
- I like getting a Coke on the flight. What I don’t like, is having to wait til the very end of the flight to get rid of my can and/or cup! On WestJet, the crew comes by a reasonable time after handing out the drinks to pickup the garbage. They never came on the Air Canada flight, I had to shove my can into the hand of the lady picking up their awkward headphones.
- Part of the problem on Air Canada with the garbage is that they don’t have enough crew members! I counted three, and one seemed to be serving business class exclusively. WestJet on the other hand has four, all serving the entire plane.
Now perhaps some of the things I have mentioned are more related to the type of plane and less to the airline. Regardless, that means WestJet still picked better planes, and thus do a better job of minding the details.
What do you think? Do you prefer WestJet or Air Canada?