Air Canada restructures North American routes

Air Canada Press Release | February 14, 2019

Estimated reading time 3 minutes, 31 seconds.

As part of an ongoing transformation within Air Canada to enhance services for customers, the company has announced multiple changes to its Eastern Canadian regional routes, to its Western Canada regional markets, and to its transborder routes.

Jazz Aviation hired close to 25 pilots through its Jazz Aviation Pathways Program in 2016, representing about eight per cent of last year's total hires. Brian Losito Photo
The addition of the Q400s to Western Canada routes will increase daily capacity by up to 80 per cent. Brian Losito Photo

On Feb. 14, Air Canada announced strategic changes to Eastern Canada routes, including upgrading Air Canada Express regional aircraft to larger Air Canada Rouge aircraft with in-flight amenities on its flights from Toronto to Fredericton, Moncton and Thunder Bay, and from Montreal to St. John’s.

“Air Canada is upgrading key Eastern Canada routes currently operated with all-economy regional aircraft by deploying larger Air Canada Rouge jets which offer a choice of two cabins, Wi-Fi and in-flight entertainment streamed to personal devices,” said Mark Galardo, vice-president of Network Planning at Air Canada. “We are pleased to add more travel options to and from Newfoundland and Labrador by increasing capacity on our flights to St. John’s via our Montreal hub which offers excellent connections to and from our extensive North American and global network. With our varied and flexible fleet, we are also adding capacity to our popular Calgary-Halifax seasonal flight with larger mainline Airbus A320 aircraft, with connections in Calgary conveniently linking Eastern and Western Canada.”

Air Canada has also announced it will boost capacity on regional routes across Western Canada this spring as it deploys Bombardier’s Q400 Next Gen aircraft. The addition of the Q400s will increase daily capacity by up to 80 per cent for some regional flights.

“Air Canada is strategically enhancing the flying experience and increasing capacity this summer on key regional routes in Western Canada.  The ultra-quiet, comfortable, fuel efficient and faster Q400 aircraft will be well-received by our customers and is larger than the regional aircraft it is replacing.  We are pleased to deploy it to more communities in Western Canada as we further strengthen our regional network to optimize all significant connections between our extensive regional and global markets,” said Galardo. “With our varied and flexible fleet, we are also adding frequencies to our Vancouver to Anchorage and adding capacity to our Calgary to Winnipeg route with larger Airbus aircraft in response to demand.”

Air Canada will be increasing its capacity for transborder flights, on top of Eastern and Western Canada flights. “These changes are part of an ongoing transformation of Air Canada Express and customers will benefit from even more convenient schedules and enhanced onboard experiences as we further strengthen our North American network, optimizing connecting opportunities between our extensive transborder, North American and global markets,” stated Galardo.

Air Canada will increase capacity and frequency of flights such as Toronto to Nashville, Toronto to Austin and Montreal to Baltimore, as well as adding new daily flights from Montreal to Raleigh as of June 3.

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