Sunwing Airlines

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Sunwing Airlines
Sunwings logo 2015.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded2005 (2005)
Commenced operationsNovember 17, 2005
AOC # Canada: 15022, [1] United States: U6WF143F [2]
Operating bases
Fleet size13 [3]
Parent company Sunwing Travel Group
Headquarters Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Key peopleMark Williams, president
Employees1,500 (2015)

Sunwing Airlines Inc. is a Canadian low-cost airline headquartered in the Etobicoke district of Toronto, Ontario.


Sunwing Airlines offers scheduled and charter services from Canada and the United States to destinations within the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and South America. During the summer months, the company offers domestic services across Canada as well as services to European cities. [4] [5] It is a subsidiary of Sunwing Travel Group and its main Canadian bases are Toronto Pearson International Airport and Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport. The company also operates seasonal flight services from over 30 local Canadian gateways including Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport, Calgary International Airport, Vancouver International Airport, and Edmonton International Airport. [6]


By 2004, Sunwing Vacations had become the second largest tour operator in the Ontario area. That year, a former Skyservice employee named Mark Williams approached the CEO of Sunwing Travel Group, Colin Hunter, and asked if he wanted to start an airline. [7] A few weeks later official plans to launch the airline were in place. In November 2005, a Boeing 737-800 departing from Toronto was the airline's inaugural flight. [8] In December 2005, Sunwing flew its first direct flight from Sudbury, Ontario to Varadero, Cuba, making it one the first international flights directly from the Sudbury Airport. [9] In November 2006, the company flew its first flight out of Montreal. [10]

By 2008, Sunwing Airlines had grown to operate in 29 cities. [11]

Boeing 737-800 of Sunwing Airlines at Bristol Airport, England (2016) Boeing 737-800 (C-FEAK) of Sunwing Airlines at Bristol Airport, England 15Aug2016 arp.jpg
Boeing 737-800 of Sunwing Airlines at Bristol Airport, England (2016)

In 2015, it was announced that Sunwing had finalised a $350 million deal to acquire two Boeing 737-800 and four Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft from Air Lease Corporation. The aircraft are due to be delivered over a four-year period from early 2016. [12] Seneca College and the University of Waterloo launched a partnership with Sunwing in 2016 to form a cadet program which includes flight training and mentoring through Sunwing. [13] Sunwing joined the Transportation Security Administration's (TSA) expedited screening program, TSA PreCheck, in January 2017. At that time, the TSA PreCheck program was available at 180 United States airports and works with 30 airlines. [14]

Sunwing took delivery of their first Boeing 737 MAX 8 on May 25, 2018. [15]


Sunwing Airlines Boeing 737-800 (2008) C-FTJH (3541586846).jpg
Sunwing Airlines Boeing 737-800 (2008)

Sunwing Airlines flies to a wide range of vacation destinations across the Caribbean, Mexico, Cuba, Central and South America. The most popular destinations include Varadero, Punta Cana, Cancun and Montego Bay. Its parent company, the Sunwing Travel Group, is Cuba's largest travel provider internationally, sending over 700,000 vacationers to the destination each year. [16] [17]

In Canada, the airline operates several domestic routes, including Toronto to Vancouver which operated daily as of Summer 2015, as well as maintaining year-round service to its most popular destinations. Other connections include Deer Lake, Gander and St John's from Toronto. [18] As of Summer 2015, the airline operated service to Caribbean destinations from Atlanta, Baltimore, Charlotte, Cincinnati, Columbus, Houston, Lansing, Milwaukee, Nashville, New Orleans, Newark, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and Rockford. [19]

In summer, Sunwing Airlines sends many of their 737-800 aircraft over to Europe to operate for the TUI Group during their extremely busy season. The aircraft operate flights all around Europe for the company.

Sunwing has an agreement with ULCC Swoop that allows passengers out of Hamilton, London, Edmonton, Abbotsford, and Winnipeg to book Sunwing vacation packages with Swoop flights.


The Sunwing Airlines fleet consists of the following aircraft as of December 18,2019: [3]

AircraftIn serviceOrdersPassengersNotes
Boeing 737-800 13189
Boeing 737 MAX 8 42189Currently grounded

Incidents and accidents

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  1. Transport Canada (26 August, 2019), Civil Aviation Services (CAS) AOC.
  2. "Federal Aviation Administration - Airline Certificate Information - Detail View". Retrieved June 27, 2019.
  3. 1 2 "Canadian Civil Aircraft Register: Quick Search Result for Sunwing Airlines". Transport Canada . Retrieved August 26, 2019.
  4. "Sunwing Airlines". CAPA Centre for Aviation. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  5. Dixon, Guy (January 25, 2016). "How to Prevent the Sinking Dollar From Grounding Your Vacation". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  6. "Sunwing Airlines Reaches Tentative 3-Year Labour Deal With Its 150 Pilots". The Toronto Star. February 8, 2013. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  7. Savedra, Jen (July 17, 2006). "Sunwing "Does it Differently"". TravelHotNews. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  8. "Sunwing Airline Soars From Toronto Pearson" (PDF). Toronto Pearson Today. February 2006. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  9. Sunwing Travel - Greater Sudbury Canada to Varadero every Wednesday, Havana Journal/Northern Life , December 28, 2005
  10. Chiasson, Uguette; Beauregard, Chantal (November 6, 2006). "Sunwing's Inaugural Flight Out of Montreal to Punta Cana". TravelHotNews. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  11. "New Carrier, Renovation for Windsor Airport". The Windsor Star. May 28, 2008. Retrieved November 2, 2016.
  12. "MAX for Sunwing". Airliner World: 13. February 2015.
  13. "Sunwing's cadet program taking flight again". Pax News. February 24, 2017. Retrieved August 3, 2017.
  14. "Sunwing awarded entry into TSA PreCheck screening program". Travel Week. January 27, 2017. Retrieved August 3, 2017.
  15. "Sunwing Travel Group".
  16. "U.S. Visitors to Cuba Will Accelerate With 12 Categories For Licenses". TravelWeek News. December 18, 2014. Retrieved November 1, 2016.
  17. Csanady, Ashley (December 17, 2017). "It's About to Get a Lot More Crowded and Costly on Cuba's Beaches". Retrieved November 1, 2016.
  18. "Sunwing Ups Domestic Schedule, Offers Daily Toronto-Vancouver Flight". TravelWeek. January 22, 2015. Retrieved November 1, 2016.
  19. Smith, Kendea (June 2, 2015). "Sunwing Airlines connects Houston Texas to Freeport Grand Bahama". The Bahamas Weekly. Retrieved November 1, 2016.
  20. "Passenger's alleged bomb threat forces Sunwing flight back to Pearson". July 25, 2014.

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