YVR welcomes Fiji Airways’ inaugural flight from Nadi, marking the airlines’ first Canadian destination

November 25, 2022 · Musqueam Territory/Richmond, B.C.

Today, Vancouver International Airport (YVR) welcomed Fiji Airways’ inaugural flight from Nadi International Airport (NAN). The twice weekly, nonstop flight from Nadi, Fiji, marks the airline’s entrance to the Canadian market.

“We are thrilled to welcome Fiji Airways to YVR and are proud to make Vancouver the airline’s first Canadian destination in its growing network,” said Mike McNaney, Vice President & Chief External Affairs Officer at Vancouver Airport Authority. “The new nonstop service to Fiji is an important connection between our two regions, directly benefiting our community and the economy that supports it.”

Fiji Airways’ new year-round service will generate approximately $7.5 million in combined Gross Domestic Product, $12.2 million in tourism dollars and an additional 86 jobs at YVR and across B.C.’s hotel, restaurants and tourist attractions.

Fiji Airways Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Andre Viljoen is encouraging Canadians to take advantage of these twice-weekly flights to enjoy the world-renowned Fijian hospitality.

“Our Five Star airline, and multi-award-winning onboard experience, including meals, amenities and staff service offer the best value for money. With Canada well into winter and travellers eagerly looking for warm tropical paradise, the timing of our newest route could not be better. There is no other choice than Fiji. You don’t have to take my word for it, you will be convinced the moment you step onboard.”

An Airbus 330-200 aircraft will operate the route, with seat capacity for 273 passengers. The airline’s extra widebody Airbus also provides more capacity for cargo, enabling an increase in trade between Fiji and Canada as well as other Pacific Island nations looking for new trade opportunities.

For more information about Fiji Airways and its entry into the Canadian market, please visit: https://www.fijiairways.com/en-ca/

Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is a diverse global hub that connects people, cargo, data, and ideas and serves as a platform for our community to come together and thrive. We are motivated by supporting regional economic development and making a positive difference in the lives of British Columbians. We do this with a focus on serving our passengers, partners, workers, and community through digital modernization, climate leadership, reconciliation, and financial sustainability.

Plaza Premium Lounge continues Canadian expansion with two renovated airport lounges and new Root98 dining experience

The award-winning airport lounge network reopens the doors to its Toronto Pearson Terminal 1 Domestic and Vancouver US Transborder lounges, adding more ways to make travel better during the country’s busiest travel season

Pictured: YVR Vancouver Renovated US Transborder Lounge

(Toronto, November 24, 2022) Plaza Premium Lounge (PPL) is excited to announce two updates to its hospitality airport services with the opening of newly renovated lounges in Terminal 1 Domestic departures at Toronto Pearson International Airport and at Vancouver International Airport servicing US departures. The newly renovated lounges have arrived just as PPL sees a 570% increase in its airport lounge services across its Canadian network as compared to November 2021. In addition, Plaza Premium Group (PPG) has added Root98, the group’s premium airport dining destination to Vancouver’s US transborder terminal to suit every traveler’s needs during the holiday travel season.

“We are excited to unveil these newly renovated lounges at a time when travelers need it the most”,  said Pascal Bélanger, Senior Vice President of Business Development and Operations for Plaza Premium Group. “The mission of Plaza Premium has always been to offer guests an elevated and comfortable airport experience no matter their ticket status and with the reopening of our T1 Domestic and US Transborder lounges, this will help us to further democratize the airport lounge experience for those traveling to and through Canada’s largest cities”.

Pictured: YYZ Toronto Pearson Renovated T1 Domestic Lounge

YYZ Toronto Pearson Renovated T1 Domestic Lounge

Conveniently located  just past security screening, the new lounge now expands to over 4,900 square feet and can seat up to 120 guests. Comfortable sofas and leather covered swivel chairs provide the ultimate relaxing environment while plush carpeting, soft lighting and high-end design features present a warm and inviting environment. Guests will receive premium hospitality services and amenities such as WI-FI, charging stations, flight information displays, TV services, shower room, baby changing stations, printing and photocopying services* and much more. 

“It’s always a pleasure to work with like-minded partners, and Plaza Premium’s focus on the passenger is on full display in its newly renovated lounge at Toronto Pearson,” said Ian Clarke, Chief Financial Officer and Acting Head of Commercial and Business Partnerships at the Greater Toronto Airports Authority. “Just in time for the traditionally busy holiday travel season, Plaza Premium’s new lounge is a welcomed addition to Toronto Pearson that will contribute strongly to our end goal of continually elevating the passenger experience.”

New to the Plaza Premium Lounge network in Canada, the T1 Domestic Lounge will be the first to offer guests the opportunity to upgrade their entry fee to gain access to a newly added exclusive VIP area. This new service located in the lounge will provide guests with their very own private oasis by reserving a dedicated seating area that includes elevated privacy thanks to elegant partitions and dividers, special snacks, premium beverages selection, shower access and dedicated bar. The new VIP service can be added on to a guest’s entry fee for as little as CAD $19.99.

Guests can now indulge in a wide variety of cuisines, from Asian to American, through dishes crafted to perfection. Plaza Premium Lounge offers all guests the experience to enjoy freshly made meals while catering to all dietary choices upon request such as: vegetarian, gluten-free, a dedicated kids menu and more. All guests visiting the lounge can expect to receive complimentary coffee, tea and soft drinks and have the opportunity to browse through a selection of house beer and wine. While visiting the full-service bar, travelers can also indulge with a Premium Pour menu that includes delicious signature cocktails.*

Pictured: YVR Vancouver Renovated US Transborder Lounge

YVR Vancouver Renovated US Transborder Lounge

The newly renovated lounge in the US Transborder Terminal has been expanded to accommodate 132 guests, double the amount based on its previous layout thanks to an added 2,000 square feet

Upon entering, the new lounge offers a restorative environment with the help of a contemporary and refined design featuring clean-lined wood paneling,  soft neutral tones, and forest green accents to reflect the natural environment of Vancouver.  Unique screen partitions, a feature ceiling over the bar and unique light fixtures add a touch of brass, elevating the space to exude refined luxury. A thoughtful floor plan design of the main lounge has a variety of zones, including a dining area, as well as a lounge area and bar, creating a natural focal point for the space. Clusters of lounge seating are spaciously located, offering guests a non-intrusive atmosphere and a sense of privacy. New amenities include a nursing room along with added shower rooms, a full service bar featuring premium drink offerings* and an updated dining menu. 

In keeping with Vancouver’s green initiatives, sustainability has been carefully woven throughout every aspect of the design approach. Locally sourced reclaimed and FSC certified wood products are used throughout the space, as well as upholstery and solid surface countertop materials containing recycled materials. 

Pictured: YVR Vancouver Root98 Marketplace

YVR Vancouver Root98 Restaurant 

Root 98 is Plaza Premium Group’s premium airport dining experience. A herbs and seeds inspired dining concept, it is designed to suit and accommodate every traveler’s dining tastes and needs by offering an international culinary selection. Taking reference from the word’s “origin” and “beginning,” “route” is a play on the airport journey travelers will embark on, while “98” pays homage to the year Plaza Premium Group was founded. The concept places emphasis on the theater of artistically plated dishes through live preparation experiences and a combination of delightful flavors. Bringing light to the importance of well-being, health and nutrition education is weaved into the design to promote better eating habits and lifestyle changes.

Benefiting from a corner location, the design is open and inviting, enticing the traveler to sit down or make a purchase to go. Behind the front counters, packaged goods for purchase are displayed in a décor punctuated by green potted plants. A bronze canopy frames each of the spaces, and colorful graphics illustrate the concept inspiration.

The new Root98 location features two components. The Marketplace invites travelers to sit down, relax and take in a warm meal before embarking on their journey while the Grab & Go offers a variety of healthy and tasty packaged meals to take on the go and enjoy either in flight or upon arrival.

Hours of operation:

YYZ Toronto Pearson Renovated T1 Domestic Lounge  05:30 am – 20:30 pm daily

YVR Vancouver Renovated US Departures Lounge 05:00 am -20:00  pm daily

YVR Vancouver Root98 Restaurant 05:00 am -20:00  pm daily

The new Toronto T1 Domestic Lounge, Vancouver US Transborder Lounge and Vancouver Root98 restaurant is now open to global travelers and passes are available to purchase via Plaza Premium Lounge website

To access high resolution images, please click here.

*Services for an additional fee

The Plaza Premium Network in Canada

The new YYZ lounge joins the existing network of Plaza Premium Lounges in Ontario, being the 6th full-service lounge in Toronto. With additional lounges located conveniently across Canada in Vancouver (YVR), Edmonton (YEG), Montreal (YUL) and Winnipeg (YWG); Plaza Premium Lounge is continuing to serve its mission of making travel better with accessible airport lounges available to all types of travelers, regardless of flight class. With optimal offers, partnerships and deals to access the lounge, travelers will always have a way to escape into bliss before takeoff. 

About Plaza Premium Lounge

Plaza Premium Lounge is the world’s first and largest award-winning independent airport lounge network. It offers all travelers, regardless of airlines or class of travel, a lounge experience in a class of its own.  The brand’s footprint spans over 70 major international airports and includes Greater China (Hong Kong, Macao, mainland, Taiwan), Southeast Asia (Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore), Australia, Americas (Brazil, Canada), Europe (Finland, Italy, U.K.), India and the Middle East (Oman, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates).

The brand has been awarded the “World’s Best Independent Airport Lounge” for five consecutive years from 2016 to 2021 at the Skytrax World Airline Awards, the global benchmark of aviation excellence. In 2020, Plaza Premium Lounge in Rome was voted “Europe’s Leading Airport Lounge” and Plaza Premium Lounge Dubai “Middle East’s Leading Airport Lounge by World Travel Awards 2020 & 2021 for two consecutive years. In 2020, the brand was successfully awarded ISO 9001:2015 for its Hong Kong Headquarters, proving the quality management in providing airport lounge services.

To learn more: www.plazapremiumlounge.com 

Air Transat announces its summer 2023 program

  • 275 flights weekly to more than 40 destinations
  • Increased flight frequency through fleet optimization

MONTREAL, Nov. 21, 2022 /CNW/ – Air Transat announces its summer 2023 program today, which will feature 275 flights a week to more than 40 destinations at the height of the season. The airline will strengthen its position in Europe, increase the number of connections to the South and the United States as well as enhance its domestic service. The airline will also service over 265 additional destinations through partnerships with other carriers, mainly with its expanding network of codeshare agreements and its exclusive platform connectair by Air Transat.

“This flight program is perfectly in line with our mission, which is to encourage discovery and foster openness, whatever the destination or the reason for traveling,” said Michèle Barre, Vice-President, Network, Revenue Management and Pricing, Air Transat. “From an operational standpoint, the more efficient use of our aircraft allows us to increase the frequency of flights and regain a capacity similar to what we had prior to the pandemic.”

Europe… over and over

At the height of the season, the airline will offer 88 direct flights weekly to 19 European destinations from Montreal. Out of Toronto, 73 direct flights a week are scheduled to 15 cities in Europe. Finally, from Quebec City, three weekly direct flights are scheduled to Paris and one to London.

Number of weekly direct flights to Europe*

Quebec City
AMSTERDAM, Netherlands34
ATHENS, Greece44
BÂLE-MULHOUSE, Switzerland2
BRUSSELS, Belgium3
DUBLIN, Ireland6
FARO, Portugal1
GLASGOW, United Kingdom7
LISBON, Portugal55
LONDON, United Kingdom7114
LYON, France5
MADRID, Spain4
MALAGA, Spain2
MANCHESTER, United Kingdom6
NANTES, France4
NICE, France3
PARIS, France1437
PORTO, Portugal34
ROME, Italy77
VENICE, Italy21
ZAGREB, Croatia3
*At the height of the season

United States: Florida and California increasingly accessible

From Montreal, Air Transat will offer a total of 16 direct flights each week to the United States, including four to Fort Lauderdale, three to Orlando, and three each to Miami, Los Angeles and San Francisco. In addition, out of Toronto, seven direct flights will depart every week, including four to Fort Lauderdale and three to Orlando. From Quebec City, the company will again offer one direct weekly flight to Fort Lauderdale.

Number of weekly flights to the United States*

Quebec City
LOS ANGELES, California3
MIAMI, Florida3
ORLANDO, Florida33
SAN FRANCISCO, California3
* At the height of the season

South: greater frequency

In keeping with the desires of Canadian seekers of sand, sun and sea, Air Transat will once again offer a selection of its most popular destinations in Mexico and the Caribbean departing from Montreal, Quebec City and Toronto.

Number of weekly flights to the South*

Quebec City
CANCUN, Mexico717
MONTEGO BAY, Jamaica11
PUERTO PLATA, Dominican Republic22
PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic717
SAMANA, Dominican Republic21
* At the height of the season

Domestic flights still popular

Encouraged by consumer response to travel within Canada, Air Transat will continue to offer numerous domestic flights out of Montreal and Toronto next summer.

Number of weekly domestic flights*

City-pairNumberof flights
* At the height of the season

About Air Transat

Founded in Montreal 35 years ago, Air Transat is a leading leisure travel brand. Voted North America’s Best Leisure Airline by passengers at the Skytrax World Airline Awards, it flies to international, transborder and Canadian destinations. It is renewing its fleet with the greenest aircraft in their category as part of a commitment to a healthier environment, knowing that this is essential to its operations and the magnificent destinations it offers. Air Transat is a business unit of Transat A.T. Inc. (TSX: TRZ). To find out more, visit airtransat.com.

WestJet codeshare on flights to Tokyo, Japan now available through enhanced cooperation with Japan Airlines

Guests now able to purchase travel from select destinations across WestJet’s domestic network to Tokyo via Vancouver

CALGARY, AB, Nov. 14, 2022 /CNW/ – WestJet today announced an enhancement to its codeshare agreement with Japan Airlines, enabling the airline’s “WS” code on Japan Airlines (JAL) operated flights between Vancouver International Airport (YVR) and Narita International Airport (NRT) in Tokyo, Japan.

With the addition of Tokyo as a destination available for sale to guests on WestJet.com and through the airline’s call centre and travel trade partners, WestJet guests can now seamlessly book travel to Tokyo via Vancouver from across the airline’s domestic network.

“As transpacific air travel increases between Canada and Japan, this is an ideal time to launch this new step in our cooperation with Japan Airlines,” said John Weatherill, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. “Both our countries have substantial inbound and outbound tourism markets and this enhancement will bring more convenient options to travellers on both sides of the Pacific.” 

This new development expands the long-standing codeshare agreement between WestJet and Japan airlines which has been in place since 2011.

Ross Leggett, Deputy Senior Vice President of Route Marketing, International Relations and Alliances of Japan Airlines said, “Japan Airlines is excited to strengthen our codeshare partnership with WestJet, by offering passengers more opportunities to travel between Japan and Canada. WestJet has been an outstanding partner, and we are committed to offering travellers seamless connectivity.”

The codeshare will offer optimized connecting times between WestJet and Japan Airlines flights, through check in and baggage checked to final destination at the first point of departure, and the ability to earn and redeem WestJet Dollars for members of WestJet Rewards.

About the WestJet Group of Companies

In 26 years of serving Canadians, WestJet has cut airfares in half and increased the flying population in Canada to more than 50 per cent. WestJet launched in 1996 with three aircraft, 250 employees and five destinations, growing over the years to more than 180 aircraft, 14,000 employees and more than 110 destinations in 24 countries.

For more information about everything WestJet, please visit www.westjet.com.

About Japan Airlines

Japan Airlines (JAL) was founded in 1951 and became Japan’s first international airline. A member of the oneworld® alliance, JAL connects more than 349 airports in 54 countries and regions together with its codeshare partners, with a modern fleet of more than 230 aircraft. JAL Mileage Bank (JMB), the airline’s loyalty program, is one of the largest mileage programs in Asia. Awarded as one of the most punctual major international airlines and a certified 5-Star Airline by Skytrax, JAL is committed to providing customers with the highest levels of flight safety and quality in every aspect of its service and aims to become one of the most preferred airlines in the world.

YVR charts course for future growth and connection in annual address to Vancouver business community

President & CEO highlights YVR’s approach to meet heightened community, traveller and economic expectations amid changing travel and aviation realities

MUSQUEAM TERRITORY and RICHMOND, BC, Oct. 27, 2022 /CNW/ – Vancouver International Airport (YVR) continues to expand and innovate with ambitious plans to align with the future growth and needs of the community and economy as presented today by President & CEO Tamara Vrooman at the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade in her first in-person address since taking on the leadership role at the airport authority.

Vrooman announced projections of increased passengers and provided significant updates on key growth priorities centered around land use, cargo, climate, and innovation, including exciting opportunities YVR is exploring beyond core airport operations.

“We are on track to welcome more than 17 million passengers this year, following an increase of 168 per cent from January to August and the single biggest increase of travellers in our 90-year history,” said Vrooman. “As we reflect on lessons learned from the pandemic and look to the future, the importance of connection has clearly illustrated the responsibility we have to lead and grow with purpose to help build a community that is resilient, thriving and sustainable.”

In keeping with YVR’s forward-looking strategy, Vrooman spoke about a number of unique ways the airport is thinking about growth and connection.

The airport redesigned its land use plan, unlocking significant opportunities for new development through 2072, and continues to focus on its cargo business by exploring and investing in digital infrastructure to improve goods movement.

YVR is leveraging its digital twin, which provides real-time information on airport operations, including modelling on optimizing operational efficiency. The tool can also be used to monitor and map more efficient aircraft movements to reduce emissions, supporting YVR’s and the industry’s climate goals.

Vrooman also highlighted YVR’s climate leadership through its recent Level 4+ Airport Carbon Accreditation and its new Cascadia Corridor partnership. The partnership will see YVR collaborate with the Port of Seattle and Port of Portland on efforts that will accelerate the decarbonization of the industry. This includes advancing the development and use of sustainable aviation fuel and electrification of airport operations.

YVR’s long-term partnership with Musqueam Indian Band remains a key anchor and guiding principle for all future airport operations and business growth opportunities. YVR continues to prioritize Indigenous partnership and allyship across its operations, as outlined in the 30-year Friendship and Sustainability Agreement.

“At YVR, how we move forward will impact our region and country, so we are very mindful of the priorities that we are setting and how we work across industry, with our many partners, and with government to build a globally connected community,” added Vrooman. “We are proud of the entire YVR team for adapting amid challenging headwinds faced by the aviation and travel industries over the past two years, and we’re excited for what’s next as we look to the future of growth and connection in service of our community and the economy that supports it.”


Vancouver International Airport (YVR) is a diverse global hub that connects people, cargo, data, and ideas and serves as a platform for our community to come together and thrive. We are motivated by supporting regional economic development and making a positive difference in the lives of British Columbians. We do this with a focus on serving our passengers, partners, workers, and community through digital modernization, climate leadership, reconciliation, and financial sustainability.