Saturday, July 10, 2010

This just in: Whisky & Wings

About a week ago I took my fourth or fifth Porter flight this year and I’m now making it official: I love this airline.

Here's why. I get to the Toronto City Airport in a breeze from my downtown home (while saving about $100 on to and fro airport pickups), I even enjoy taking the little ferry across to the island (one of life’s simple pleasures), and once across the lake the Porter lounge is user-friendly with a clean design and Mac stations. There are even cold beverages and cappuccinos and biscotti and shortbread on hand. (Shortbread!)

Of course, this shouldn’t take anything away from the good folks at Air Canada, an airline that remains close to my heart. After all, enRoute magazine, Air Canada’s inflight mag, was my first regular freelance gig out of journalism school, and I’ve been a regular contributor ever since. Which means I’ve been writing for the magazine my entire career. That’s a long time!

Air Canada also trumps Porter Air on the inflight entertainment front – I love getting caught up on old TV series, Canadian cinema and even new Hollywood flicks, all from the comfort of my personal entertainment system. Oh, and they fly basically everywhere.

Bottom line: When comparing likewise airlines in the States, I think we’re lucky to have two superior options here in Canada.

But here’s where Porter blows Air Canada out of the water…Free booze!

When I flew to Ottawa last week, I swear, we were only in the air for about a half hour, and it wasn’t even noon, and I still got a nice chilled chardonnay – in a real glass.

And now Porter has paired with Glenfiddich to make pre-flight even more top-notch. The famed fifth generation single malt providers are offering guided tastings of the Glenfiddich 12 year old, 15 year old and 18 year old and single malts with on-hand “Malt Specialists” at the Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, from 4pm to 8pm on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays until July 23rd.

In other words, the skies just got a whole lot friendlier.