Off To Canada (Again)

Holidays in Canada

Flights and stuff

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Do you remember me saying that we’ll fly Air Canada again? You do? Oh. Well we’re flying with British Airways instead. Who said only women can change their minds? The real reason is to do with the fact that we’ll I’ll be driving as soon as we get there and so we thought it might be quite nice to travel in premium economy. That way we get a bit more room to stretch out and maybe get a bit of sleep. It also means that we’ll have nobody sharing the row near the window with us and so we won’t have to keep getting up and down all the time. Air Canada sadly don’t do premium economy, just economy and business class (way out of our price bracket) so we looked to British Airways instead. We get an increase in baggage allowance (2 x 23kg bags each instead of 1 each) and bigger seats with more leg room. Of course I realised that you can’t really go there with an increase in baggage allowance and come back with a smaller allowance so we’re going premium economy both ways. My only gripe is that once you pay a premium to get these ‘extras’ you are then asked to pay more to reserve your seat if you want a particular row. I seem to remember being able to do this free of charge with Air Canada when flying economy so it’s a bit rubbish having to pay £32 per seat per flight to do the same don’t you think? We complain about Ryanair hiding costs and ridiculing them when they say ‘you don’t have to pay if you don’t want, We’re not forcing you’ and then see BA doing the same thing. Anyway, the flights are sorted. We’re really going.

I then had a splurge on booking hotels, starting with the first place we’re staying, which is the Brentwood Bay Resort and Spa.

The view from our balcony

We stayed there previously when we did our West Coast trip in 2008 and Amanda in particular loved it. It’s in a great location right on the waterfront and has excellent food (and very good beer I seem to remember). I know that Amanda will be enjoying the spa as she loved it the last time we stayed. On that earlier trip it was our last but one stop but on this it will be our first stop. A chance to get over any jet lag and get ready for the big drive ahead. Of course we have to get there first and that should be interesting in itself.

Apart from a little bit of driving in Menorca quite a few years back, I’ve never driven on the wrong side of the road. Not even unintentionally. I’m not nervous yet, it’s quite a long way off, but I think I will be by the time I have to do it. Before you say anything, I know it’s probably easier than I think and I’m worrying over nothing but there you go. Fear of the unknown. After landing in Vancouver we have to collect the car and drive straight to the ferry terminal, get on the ferry and drive to the hotel once we get to the island. It’s not far actually, only about an hour and a quarter total driving with the ferry ride in between so it’ll be fine…won’t it?

Right by the side of the hotel is another (tiny) ferry which bills itself as Vancouver Island’s most beautiful shortcut. I haven’t decided whether we’ll take it yet but it cuts about 20 mins off the driving time to Ucluelet and it does look very pretty indeed.

Vancouver Island’s most beautiful shortcut.

The quicker way, no doubt

After that delightful rest we have a big drive to the west coast to look forward to. I checked on Google Maps and it reckons about 5 hours 16 mins but as we’re travelling on roads we’ve not seen before and going through places I KNOW I’ll want to stop and take photos of, I think it’s a full day. I admit, I’m looking forward to this. I’ll tell you more about it next time.

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