Vancouver weather: Are you flying to YVR over the holidays?

Vancouver weather: Are you flying to YVR over the holidays?

Be prepared or maybe regret it.

Locals planning to fly out of BC’s largest airport over the holiday season may want to have a contingency plan in place.

While many flights are expected to go on schedule – even with a significant increase in passenger traffic – others will be significantly delayed or cancelled.

The bitterly cold Arctic air mass that will invade the lower mainland over the weekend is having far-reaching effects. In fact, most of North America will experience localized impacts from its glacial range, which will devastate flight schedules to numerous destinations worldwide.

Weather in Metro Vancouver is expected to include several days of snowfall over the coming days, although the exact timing of the weather event is still uncertain at this point. If you have a flight planned, there are a few things to consider before you leave.

FlightAware spokeswoman and aerospace expert Kathleen Bangs said Vancouver is great in a previous interview that airfares may have been higher for the holiday season because they have not fallen in the off-season and many people will be visiting family for the first time since the pre-pandemic era.

Of course, that means travelers can expect to see regular holiday levels of passenger traffic at airports – and that generally means longer waits and crowds.

What to do if you’ve booked a flight at Vancouver International Airport over the holidays?

Travelers should check the weather conditions a few days before their flight. But they shouldn’t just check the weather in their departure and destination locations. Instead, they should look at the weather across North America as it affects the network, advises Bangs.

Where possible, booking a replacement flight provides an option during peak travel times when cancellations are likely. Depending on the fare class you have booked, you can cancel the replacement flight if necessary and use the credit towards future travel.

Always purchase travel insurance that includes trip interruption, trip cancellation, medical coverage for at least $5 million, and comprehensive baggage loss and delay. Read the fine print carefully.

New regulations require airlines to have additional refund requirements for customers whose flights are delayed by more than three hours.

The new rules require Canadian airlines to provide customers “with either a refund or rebooking, at the passenger’s option, when a flight cancellation or prolonged delay occurs due to a situation beyond the airline’s control,” according to the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA).

Find out everything you need to know about the new flight rules and what you need to do to keep your money.

Travel tips from YVR over the holidays

YVR’s teams are closely monitoring the evolving five-day forecast, including temperature, wind, visibility and snow.

“This allows our team to plan and prepare accordingly,” a spokesman for YVR told VIA in a statement.

While inclement weather can affect the airport’s ability to operate to its highest safety standards, it works with its airline partners to manage arrivals and departures, while teams work to clear snow and ice from aprons, taxiways, runways and aircraft deicing

  • Travelers are encouraged to check flight details online with YVR or with their airline prior to arrival. By checking in before you arrive, you can avoid queuing to get your boarding pass and it will appear on your smart device. You can also print out a copy.
  • Travelers to the United States can also “skip the line” by reserving a time slot through the new YVR Express program. You can reserve a spot up to 72 hours in advance.
  • YVR recommends travelers to arrive at least two hours before domestic flights and three hours before US and international flights. If the weather is bad, however, you should give yourself more time – and more time to get to the airport.
  • If you arrive by car, book your parking space in advance. To avoid the streets, consider taking the convenient Canada Line, which takes you directly from downtown Vancouver to the airport in 30 minutes.
  • ArriveCAN is now an optional tool for travelers who want to save time at the airport by filing their customs and immigration declarations with the CBSA in advance (up to 72 hours before they arrive in the country).
  • Order your meals in advance with YVR Order Now.
  • If you’re picking someone up, use the cell phone waiting area, a free 30-minute lot with free wifi. Do not circle the terminals.

Travelers with questions can contact YVR Guest Experience team members or Green Coat volunteers. They are stationed at information desks and throughout the terminal.

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