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Vacations from Halifax

I was wondering what online sites folks are using when vacationing out of Halifax and if people have stumbled upon any successful strategies to maximize choice while of course minimizing expense when traveling from this end of the country.

I am not sure there is any way to get around the vastly inferior selection of vacation options when traveling out of Halifax as opposed to the big smoke (aka Toronto) and of course the premium we pay to travel. While admittedly I am not a travel professional I cannot grasp why there is a $200$ plus difference when booking a trip to a particular resort in Cuba for example from Halifax rather than Toronto, especiall since the tour companies are sending full aircraft from both locations.

Currently I monitor tripcentral, flightcenter, and selloffvacations. I would be appreciative if anyone has additional suggestions.




I usually search on selloffs or Bel Air Travel to find out what is available and then go to my local Travel Agent and she can book the trip at the same price. I prefer to use a TA to get that extra level of security, plus I know that Marylou will go that extra mile for me!

One thing I have noticed is that (for example) Air Transat does not offer anything out of Halifax until February on their own website, however, selloffs did have a direct Air Transat flight out of Halifax for January. It is once a week on Saturday and only to Varadero. I just booked for January 10 through my TA.

If you look more closely at selloffs, etc. there are some reasonable prices via other airports. I found one to Holquin via Ottawa but Air Canada only has an ~ 80 minute window for transferring both ways. WHich could be very dicey in January. Otherwise, there is usually a 6 - 7 hour wait in Montreal or Toronto for the Halifax connection, usually from 00:30 to 07:30.

Hope this helps. Valleyguy


Thanks for the feedback.

Your response is confirming what I feared that people are giving in and traveling through other cities such as Toronto, Montreal, & Ottawa. I have as much problem with this as I do with the lack of choice out of Halifax. For example my inability to book a trip to THE CVJ out of Halifax this year while the airplanes are still leaving Halifax, mostly full, for Veradero.

I guess the bottom line is that I still feel that if one does not live in the GTA one pays a premium, one I cannot rationally understand, for our winter sun fix.

Just my 2 cents.


We always use Yourtraveltickets.com - find they are a little cheaper than sell off and we’ve been pleased. We’ve never been able to find a TA that will match the low price offerd at YTT. We booked our trip in May of '08 for travel in April '09 and the price never, ever went down - in fact it increased by over $400 and is now sold out - as are all the Transat flights for March from Halifax to Santa Clara.

It’s all supply and demand - the sheer number of people traveling out of Ontario and Quebec dictate the lower prices. If you look closely you will find that Air Transat (example) is most time chartering out their packages from Halifax to CanJet or Westjet - smaller planes, less people.

Hi Jenn,
We have travelling twice a year since 95 and that the local travel agents will not match online pricing. Also our experiencethat the line they TA feed people about security is bull. Your tour company rep will resolve any problems you have. We have always booked with Sell Off Vacations and never had any problems, however last month we booked with Itravel2000 and found their follow up was better, either will match any price you find. We always book through their call centres not on line.

There are very few flights out of Halifax compared to Toronto, so I am looking at flights out of Toronto and Montreal (cheaper than Toronto) as I have Air Miles to go to either city. I just have to pay the taxes, approx. $150. There are lots of flights and resorts in the 3-3.5 star range unlike Halifax. I use Itravel2000, Escapes, Yourtraveltickets and Selloffvacations to compare.

Be very careful in booking a flight Halifax – Toronto on points … the charters from Toronto to Varadero often change their departure time, so you may need to depart Hfx on the last flight in the evening if you are scheduled for a morning flight from Toronto. Same for the flight home … you may need to overnight in Toronto if your flight is late arriving. If you are doing the Hxf-To-Hfx portion on points, there is no flexibility to change at the last minute. :frowning:
Sometimes, a travel agent can get you something from Halifax that isn’t offered on-line. For example, my TA did get me a booking at Cameleon Villa Jibacoa, even though it wasn’t offered on-line. When I arrived in Varadero, I met another flight from Montreal, and traveled to CVJ in their shuttle. :slight_smile:
Some people choose to spend extra time and money to go through Toronto instead of paying a fee to a travel agent. Sometimes I am in a situation that I need to do the same, for a variety of reasons. But if it vacation travel, I would rather pay the TA fee and get what I want.

This is almost what happened to us last year.
We booked with Airmiles to Montreal from HFX. And we were to fly out to Manzanillo de Cuba the next day and grab a fairly quick stop over on the way home. But they messed up the Cuba times and we had to rebook our air miles flights and stay an extra day on the end. We had travel insurance and it was all covered, thank goodness.
I’m also presently looking at Club Villa Cojimar in Cayo Guillermo for end of Jan out of Montreal. It can be had for as low as $705 taxes in. Way cheaper than HFX. I don’t remember paying so much tax with airmiles last year, seems to have doubled.
I think a person may be better trying to get a last minute deal out of HFX and end up paying the same amount with less hassles.
The issue with airmiles is that Westjet doesn’t fly direct to Montreal from HFX, only to TO then Montreal, so 5 hours or more just to get to Montreal, no thank you.

As far as booking goes, I’ve always found my best price, through yourtraveltickets, selloffvacations, belairtravel or beatmyquote then call flight centre and they match it.

Good luck seems this year flying out of the maritimes is gonna be not only more $$$ but less choices… ???

jethro- you can use your air miles on Air Canada and fly direct to Montreal from Halifax

Not on the date I want… :’(

Jenn, this year I was trying to book a trip for 8 people. On the search online you can only book 6 people, so I stopped at a local TA office as I know her computer would have more info. She actually found me the trip I wanted out of my hometown Moncton, instead of the departures I was looking at (Halifax, St.John,N.B. as they were cheaper online) and at $75.00 less per person plus $100.00 off of the tax per person. Turns out only 4 of us booked, the others backed out. She is now keeping an eye out for me for CVJ for April out of the Maratimes, at a good price. What she had at the time of booking our March trip was more than I wanted to pay, but if she finds me a really good price I can afford to go to Cuba again!

I am also watching for good prices from Halifax. I discovered by accident that somes trips are actually cheaper out of Moncton - some by $300-400. Might be worth checking as the drive is reasonable. Also, the airmiles website has comparable prices to selloffvacations and you don’t have to use airmiles (although you get a discount if you do).


Here in Moncton we always see that it is cheaper to fly out of Halifax. ;D I guess the grass is always greener in the other province,lol ;D