Air Canada Vacations’ Launch Attracts Full House In YVR

A boisterous crowd of nearly 400 travel advisors filled a ballroom at the Delta Hotel by Marriott Burnaby for the launch of the 2023/2024 Winter Sun Collection by Air Canada Vacations for the Vancouver region on Sept. 12. It was the third of five winter escape product launches staged by ACV in cities across Canada, with two more upcoming this week, reports Press Today’s western editor Ted Davis, who attended the show.

A total of about 2,500 agents across Canada were expected to come to the ACV shows, which kicked off in Halifax and also made a stop in Montreal, plus Edmonton for the first time.

Before presentations on the new ACV winter sun programs, agents met with holiday product suppliers whose displays filled the back half of the ballroom as part of a busy trade show. They also got the opportunity to sample some flavours of Mexico and visit the Caribbean food stations at the World of Hyatt Inclusive Collection booth.

The advisors then took their seats for the ACV launch, which kicked off with a high-energy dance show by a professional troupe. Leading the presentations was Nino Montagnese, VP of Air Canada Vacations, who applauded the enthusiasm of the attending advisors.

That was echoed by other presenters who took the stage, including C.J. Smith, the director of sales in Canada for Sandals Resorts, title sponsor for the launch.

He expressed gratitude that Air Canada had increased its flight frequencies to St. Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) to four flights per week from Toronto Pearson, starting in November. He also paid tribute to Winston Chang, a long-serving BDM for BC, Saskatchewan and Yukon, who was not able to attend the launch.

An ACV leadership team of 10 executives was on hand to lead the Dream Bigger and See the World Product Launch. Travel advisors can expect more of the same at the upcoming launches in Montreal on Sept. 19 and Toronto on Sept. 21.

Also on stage to make key announcements was Ana Paula De Souza, the director of sales at ACV. She highlighted some new flight routes from Montreal and Toronto to Europe, including a new year-round route between Montreal and Madrid and expanded services to Italy that include three flights per day to Rome.

She also advised agents that it would be wise to start booking summer 2024 holidays for their clients now, given the high number of bookings that were posted by ACV this past summer.

Hard copies of the Sun Travel Agent Tool Kit were distributed to agents at the show, providing some helpful guidance to the Dream of Sun interactive digital brochure. Enhanced self-serve tools are available to travel agents via the Manage Your Booking page on

The digital initiatives are built around the evolving needs of travel agent partners, says ACV. is available in person at ACV touchscreen kiosks.

Air Canada Vacations’ Sun Collection offers over 1,000 resorts across 45 destinations, plus hundreds of cruise itineraries.

In wrapping up the presentation, ACV reported that agent mega fams were being organized for both before and after the peak winter escape season to Caribbean hot spots.

And to end the show, over 20 prizes were awarded randomly to agents with a draw of business cards. Prizes included resort stays by both Sandals Resorts and Bahia Principe Hotels and Resorts, plus AC flight tickets in some cases.