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CAA and VIA Rail Canada Partner to Help Make Travelling More Rewarding

OTTAWA, ON – The Canadian Automobile Association and VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) have partnered to make train travel even more affordable, with new discounts designed exclusively for CAA Members.

“With the holiday season just around the corner, families across the country are getting ready to make a short – or long – trip to be with their loved ones,” says Jeff Walker, Chief Strategy Officer, CAA National. “CAA and VIA Rail are pleased to offer our Members a new way to do so.”

VIA Rail operates up to 420 trains weekly and serves 450 communities across the country, from coast to coast. “As Canadians prepare themselves for the potential hazards of winter travel, VIA Rail is always ready for the unexpected,” declared Martin R. Landry, Chief Commercial Officer at VIA Rail. “Travelling by train with VIA Rail, even in the worst weather conditions, is a sensible and safe choice. Thanks to our partnership with CAA, we hope that more people will choose the peace of mind and comfort that this collaboration offers.”

“As Canada’s top leisure travel organization, CAA knows that travel can cause stress for some and that’s why we pride ourselves in aligning our brand with reputable organizations that offer superior value to our Members. We are happy to partner with VIA Rail to help our Members get the most rewarding benefits when travelling by train,” says Walker.

Under the new program already in effect, CAA Members can earn a 10 per cent discount on the best available fare*. As an added bonus to highlight this new partnership, the special offer to Members will increase to 20 per cent off the best available fare*, from January 8 to 25, 2015. What’s more, CAA Members who are also VIA Préférence Members will receive a one-time bonus of 100 VIA Préférence points on their first trip.

“Over the last 15 years, CAA’s Rewards program has grown to be one of Canada’s largest loyalty programs with more than 164,000 locations for saving worldwide,” says Walker. “As one of Canada’s most trusted brands, our Members have high expectations of us, and therefore we are always looking to grow our CAA Rewards program.”

*Restrictions apply. For more information visit www.viarail.ca/en/caa, call 1-888 VIA RAIL (842-7245), or visit the nearest VIA Rail Train Station.

About CAA

CAA is a federation of nine clubs providing over 6 million Members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure and consumer protection.

About VIA Rail Canada

As Canada's national rail passenger service, VIA Rail Canada (viarail.ca) and its 2,500 employees are mandated to provide safe, efficient and economical passenger transportation service, in both official languages of our country. VIA Rail operates intercity, regional and transcontinental trains linking 450 communities across Canada, and safely transports nearly four million passengers annually. The Corporation was awarded eight Safety Awards by the Railway Association of Canada over the last nine years, and was the recipient of the 2013 Agent's Choice Award voted by Canadian travel agents and presented by Baxter Travel Media. Since 2007, the Government of Canada has invested almost a billion dollars in VIA Rail. Read more about our transformation at viarail.ca/TransformingVIA.

For further information, please contact:

Kristine D’Arbelles

Manager, Public Affairs

CAA National

613-247-0117 ext. 2006

613-796-9404

kdarbelles@national.caa.ca

Mylène Bélanger

Senior Advisor, Media Relations

VIA Rail Canada

514 871-6137 | 1 877 393-8787

mylene_belanger@viarail.ca | media@viarail.ca

 

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Christmas Plans Unaffected by Low Gas Prices, CAA survey finds

Ottawa, ON – Despite gas prices falling to five-year lows in most parts of the country, Canadians say they won’t be altering Christmas plans even though their wallets are a little thicker now. And many expect prices to rise again by spring, a new poll by the Canadian Automobile Association has found.

A majority of Canadians say they are closely watching falling gas prices, but the low gas prices are not affecting their plans or spending this holiday season, the poll found.

“Although they are enjoying the savings, the majority of drivers are reluctant to change their behaviour this Christmas,” summed up Jeff Walker, vice president of public affairs at CAA. “Many don’t expect the savings to last much longer.”

The national average for retail gas prices dropped below $1/litre this week, yet four out of five drivers (82 per cent) are not planning to drive more this holiday season to visit friends and family. And most Canadians (71 per cent) will not be using their recent savings on gas to spend more on gifts, they say.

“The drop in gas prices we have seen in the past few months is unprecedented and is something that happens once in a generation” Walker says. “But a lot of Canadians don’t seem to trust it.”

Fewer than half of Canadians (45 per cent) predict even lower gas prices in the coming months, while 43 per cent expect they will move higher. And of those predicting higher prices, over half (53 per cent) expect gas prices to begin rising by spring toward the levels they were at a few months ago.

The national average was 99¢/litre as of the morning of Dec. 18, a drop of 6¢ since last week and the lowest price in almost five years, according to CAA’s Gas Price Monitor, located at getgasprices.ca or on the CAA app. The last time the national average was 99¢/litre was on Jan. 11, 2009.

The monitor provides daily, weekly, monthly and yearly average prices for Canada, all provinces and over 110 cities. The CAA app for mobile devices shows prices at over 11,000 individual gas stations across Canada, updated at least nine times a day.

The CAA poll surveyed 1,027 Canadians between Dec. 5 and Dec. 12. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-3.1 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

CAA is a federation of nine clubs providing over 6 million Members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure and consumer protection.

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Retail Gas Prices Hit 4-Year Low

OTTAWA, ON – Canadian average retail gas prices have hit a four-year low and the trend to lower prices is likely to continue into the holiday season, according to the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA).

“For many Canadians this week, the gas pump will be putting the smallest dent in their wallets in the last four years,” says Jeff Walker, CAA vice president of public affairs. “The sharp drop in prices of crude oil over the past couple of months is finally being reflected in Canadian retail prices.”

Some city average retail prices have dropped as much as 5¢ per litre in the last week. Vancouver and Calgary dropped 5¢ per litre since last week, while Ottawa dropped 4¢ in the last week.

And CAA says lower prices should continue in the coming weeks. “The price of crude oil is still falling, which will add further momentum to already declining gas prices,” says Walker.

The average national retail price in Canada was $1.11 per litre as of Dec 1, according to the CAA Gas Price Monitor, the lowest price since December 2010.

The monitor, available at getgasprices.ca, provides daily, weekly, monthly and yearly average prices for Canada, all provinces and over 110 cities. The CAA app for mobile devices shows prices at over 11,000 individual gas stations across Canada, updated at least nine times a day.

The benchmark West Texas Intermediary price for crude oil closed Monday at $69 US per barrel, a decline of $6 since last week.

CAA is a federation of nine clubs providing over 6 million Members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure and consumer protection.

For further information, please contact:

Kristine D’Arbelles

Manager, Public Affairs

CAA National

613-247-0117 ext. 2006

613-796-9404

kdarbelles@national.caa.ca

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CAA presents AmaWaterways with 2014 Partner of the Year Award

OTTAWA, ON – The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) is pleased to announce that AmaWaterways is the 2014 winner of the CAA Partner of the Year award.

The award was presented at a special Award dinner to celebrate CAA’s Preferred Travel Partnerships. The dinner was held during the CAA Vision conference in Orlando, Florida at the end of September. CAA Travel delegates from Clubs across Canada, as well as 45 Preferred Partners, participated in the annual event.

AmaWaterways was recognized for its commitment to providing CAA Members and CAA Travel Agents with exemplary travel services and products.

“CAA is partnered with some of the most respected companies in the travel business so the competition for this prestigious award is tough,” said Brenda Kyllo, Vice President of Travel at CAA National. “AmaWaterways continues to achieve high customer satisfaction ratings from our Members. Their commitment to providing value and deliver world-class service has earned them this year’s most prestigious CAA Travel Award.”

The award selection process includes surveys and evaluations from the Association’s Club Travel Agency executives and front line teams. Executives are asked to rate all CAA Preferred Partners in five categories: marketing, service, product, technology and sales, and training. Partners are also evaluated on their support of the CAA/AAA Travel Strategy, which is to provide added value and benefits to the CAA membership.

CAA is a federation of nine Clubs providing over six million Members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure and consumer protection.

[caption id="attachment_4301" align="aligncenter" width="300"]brenda kyllo kristin karst From left to right: Kristin Karst (AmaWaterways) and Brenda Kyllo (Vice-President of Travel, CAA National Office).[/caption]

For further information, please contact:

Kristine D’Arbelles

Manager, Public Affairs

CAA National

Office: 613-247-0117 ext. 2006

Mobile: 613-796-9404

kdarbelles@national.caa.ca 

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Gas Prices More Popular Topic Than Hockey – CAA Survey

OTTAWA, ON – When it comes to conversation topics, the ups and downs of gas prices are more interesting to Canadians than the wins and losses of their favourite hockey team, according to a survey conducted by the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA).

“Gas prices are a more popular topic for Canadians than hockey,” says Jeff Walker, vice-president of public affairs, CAA National. “This just goes to show how much focus Canadians put on the price of gas.”

Most recently, gas price talks have been fuelled by dropping prices. Some city average retail prices have dropped as much as 3¢ to 4¢ per litre in the last week. Calgary dropped 4¢ per litre, Montreal dropped 3¢ per litre, and Toronto dropped 4¢ per litre since last week.

The national average retail price in Canada was $1.15 per litre as of Nov 18, dropping to almost a four-year low, according to CAA’s Gas Price Monitor, available at getgasprices.ca.

The monitor provides daily, weekly, monthly and yearly average prices for Canada, all provinces and over 110 cities. The CAA app for mobile devices shows prices at over 11,000 individual gas stations across Canada, updated at least nine times a day.

CAA asked Canadians to rank how much they talk about popular topics. The top eight in order were: family/kids, weather, work, personal issues, gas prices, local news, travel and hockey/other sports.

The CAA poll surveyed 1,252 Canadians. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/-2.8 per cent, 19 times out of 20.

CAA is a federation of nine clubs providing over 6 million Members with exceptional emergency roadside service, complete automotive and travel services, member savings and comprehensive insurance services. CAA also advocates on issues of concern to its members, including road safety, the environment, mobility, infrastructure and consumer protection.

For further information, please contact:

Kristine D’Arbelles
Manager, Public Affairs
CAA National
613-247-0117 ext. 2006
613-796-9404

kdarbelles@national.caa.ca

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