Low-cost carriers Swoop, Flair duke it out in Edmonton

Wednesday, August 29, 2018 – Posted by Travelweek Group

EDMONTON — Low-cost carrier Flair Airlines says it’s working with Edmonton to establish its position as the city’s ‘hometown airline’, just as Swoop announces new service ex Edmonton, its western base.

About 75% of Flair’s flights go through Edmonton International Airport (EIA), says Flair’s Airlines Executive Chairman David Tait.

Tait says Flair’s summer load factors have “surpassed projections”, with loads in excess of 90%.

“It’s been a delightfully busy summer for us,” he adds. “Since mid June – when we more than doubled our capacity and expanded our network to 10 cities from Victoria to Halifax – our fleet of seven aircraft has carried more than a quarter million passengers and we’re currently enjoying load factors in excess of 90%.”

In the coming months Flair will continue to relocate staff to its new HQ building at EIA, as well as hire for new positions.

“Going forward, our robust fleet expansion plan should see up to 20 newer, more fuel efficient and longer-range aircraft by the end of 2020. The first additions will start arriving in early 2019 as our current aircraft are rapidly phased out.”

Airports served by Flair report an increase in new and first-time travellers, he added.

From 10 coast-to-coast gateways, Flair currently operates some 200 weekly domestic flights.

Meanwhile LCC competitor Swoop has added a new domestic route to its winter schedule: direct service four times weekly between Edmonton and Winnipeg.

Service begins October 11, 2018 and runs through to April 27, 2019 on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays.

“This is a welcome addition to our western base of Edmonton,” says Swoop President Steven Greenway. “We are witnessing a positive response to our ultra-low-cost model in both Edmonton and Winnipeg. Connecting these two cities is a natural progression of our network strategy as we continue to stimulate more travel, more often for our savvy travellers.”

Flights are now available for booking through to April 27, 2019.