Canaryfly does not get much press but is one of the regional airlines competing with Binter Canarias and Air Europa for flights between the Canary Islands.
Canaryfly and Binter Canarias sell tickets between the islands at a dual-price system – the subsidized price for island residents and the regular price. Regular fares are about twice the local price. Usually, you end up paying about $50 per one-way between the islands (distances are usually under 100 miles for any flight).
We dutifully arrived two hours before departure at Las Palmas Airport (we also had to return a rental car) and check-in was just about to open. There seemed to be no other flights operated by Canaryfly around that time. A very knowledgeable agent printed out our boarding passes in seconds and asked for any check-in luggage. A free bag is included with any fare and given the small cabin and overhead bins, it is a good idea to check in Rollaboards (as they won’t fit).
Las Palmas Airport is operated by the Spanish Aena which runs some great airports. Despite the small size of the island, the busy airport has a Priority Pass lounge called Sala Galdos. While at first glance, the lounge doesn’t look very inviting, I quickly fell in love with it.
There is a large outdoor terrace with beautiful views of the runway and the ocean; you won’t miss a single plane taking off from or landing there.
There’s half a dozen of wines on offer, which all seemed excellent from my limited sampling and there were a number of snacks (incl. little packs of olive oil) for the hungry traveler.
The airport WiFi came in at 4 Mbit and was stable the whole time.
Boarding was scheduled 20 minutes before departure for the small ATR 72. We walked by at the last moment and boarding had just commenced; one bus was enough to take us all out to the small plane that was being boarded from the aft door only.
We encountered a bit of a wait at take-off but made it in time for some beautiful sunset views of Gran Canaria and Tenerife just 50 miles later.
We never went up more than 20,000 feet and seemingly flew as slowly as possible.
The flight attendants managed to serve water to the almost full plane within just 10 minutes between take-off and descent.
In sum, this seemed a really routine flight. I’m not sure if Canaryfly will operate independently much longer with the towering competition but everyone seems to be interested in having at least some competition on these domestic intra-Canary Islands routes.
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About the author: Torsten is a serial entrepreneur who started almost a dozen ventures on four continents. Torsten's love for travel has brought him to 130+ countries and travel with most of the world's airlines. You can reach Torsten at [email protected]
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