WestJet Group completes its acquisition of Sunwing

WestJet and Sunwings aircraft on the taxiway.
Lord of the Wings© from Toronto, Canada, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Canada’s WestJet Group has now formally completed its acquisition of Sunwing Vacations and Sunwing Airlines.

The acquisition was originally announced in March 2022, and effectively combines the two Canadian aviation and leisure travel assets

WestJet say that the merger will bring greater choice, competitive airfares and increased direct access to sun destinations to Canadian travellers.

In addition, the strategic move also positions Sunwing to continue its growth across Canada and permits the newly merged company to protect jobs.

Strategic trajectory

Initially, the airlines will continue independent operations, maintaining a dual focus of providing an exceptional guest experience and ensuring safe operations.

As the two entities begin the transition from competitors to collaborators, the combination of these businesses will be planned in a way that positions Sunwing as an instrumental pillar of the WestJet Group, and prioritizes the experience of a growing number of guests.  

“As we have set out on our new strategic trajectory for the WestJet Group, investing further in leisure and sun flying across Canada is a critical driver for growth,” said Alexis von Hoensbroech, Chief Executive Officer of the WestJet Group.


 “It brings me great pleasure to welcome Sunwing to the group, adding 18 Boeing 737s, 2,000 employees and Canada’s largest vacation tour operator and significantly expanding our footprint in Eastern Canada.”

“Together, we will strategically enhance our sun and leisure offerings to bring even more affordable and accessible travel opportunities to Canadians.” 

Establishment of WestJet Vacations Business

Stephen Hunter, formerly the CEO of Sunwing Vacations, has been appointed CEO of the WestJet Group’s Vacations Business, responsible for all tour operating and vacation package businesses of both the Sunwing Vacations and WestJet Vacations brands.

“The combination of our complementary businesses marks an important milestone that will enable us to fast-track our growth plans and provide Canadians with more affordable vacations to more destinations than ever before,” said Stephen Hunter, CEO of the WestJet Group’s Vacations Business.

“I am thrilled to join forces with WestJet and, in doing so, create even more opportunities for our people and deliver greater value for Canadian travellers.”

As previously announced, the WestJet Group’s newly combined tour operator businesses, comprised of WestJet Vacations and Sunwing Vacations, will be headquartered in Toronto, Ontario and will continue to operate a Montreal office.

In the coming years, the Vacations Business expects to facilitate new flying and new employment opportunities by retaining Sunwing’s aircraft in Canada year-round, among other sources of anticipated growth.

“We are excited to welcome Sunwing’s employees to the WestJet Group of Companies; throughout the planning of this transaction, we have been continually impressed by their expertise and experience in the vacations industry.”

“We look forward to working alongside them to deliver memorable services to an expanding number of Canadians,” concluded von Hoensbroech.

About Sunwing

Sunwing is the largest integrated travel company in North America, and operates more flights to the south than any other leisure carrier.

It provides a direct service from airports across Canada to popular sun and travel destinations across the U.S.A., Caribbean, Mexico and Central America.

By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 4 Min Read
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