Air Transat announces its summer 2022 flight program

MONTREAL, Nov. 11, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Transat, named World’s Best Leisure Airline, is proud to announce its flight program for the summer of 2022. At the height of the season, it will operate more than 250 flights each week to 44 destinations. It will gradually increase its service to Europe, strengthen its position in the United States by offering flights to Los Angeles and San Francisco for the first time, offer a selection of its most popular South destinations, and enhance its domestic flight program.

“We are actively rebuilding our network with a modern and versatile fleet that will enable us to meet the increased demand expected in 2022,” said Annick Guérard, President and Chief Executive Officer, Transat. “We will be returning to almost all of the destinations served before the pandemic, in addition to offering Canadian travellers major new destinations.”

An expanded Europe flight program

From Montreal, the airline will offer 7 direct flights weekly to London-Gatwick and 14 to Paris. It also plans to restart operations to the French provinces, with service to Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille, Nantes, Nice and Toulouse. A total of 19 European destinations will be accessible via direct service from Montreal, including a new route to Amsterdam.

Air Transat will also strengthen its position as the leading international carrier departing from Jean Lesage Airport in Quebec City by offering exclusive non-stop flights to two European capitals: Paris and, for the first time, London.

From Toronto, in addition to 14 weekly flights to London, travellers will also be able to fly to 13 other key European destinations in Croatia, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and the U.K.

Number of weekly direct peak-season flights to Europe

Quebec City
AMSTERDAM, the Netherlands34
ATHENS, Greece33
BASEL-MULHOUSE, Switzerland1
BRUSSELS, Belgium3
DUBLIN, Ireland5
GLASGOW, United Kingdom4
LISBON, Portugal55
LONDON, United Kingdom7114
LYON, France4
MADRID, Spain3
MALAGA, Spain2
MANCHESTER, United Kingdom4
NANTES, France3
NICE, France2
PARIS, France1434
PORTO, Portugal23
ROME, Italy45
VENICE, Italy21
ZAGREB, Croatia2

United States: focus on California and Florida

From Montreal, Air Transat will introduce a new direct service to California with two flights a week to San Francisco and three to Los Angeles. It will also intensify its service to Florida by operating flights between Montreal and Miami throughout the year, in addition to flying to Fort Lauderdale and Orlando from both Montreal and Toronto.

Finally, travellers from Quebec City will now be able to enjoy direct flights to Fort Lauderdale year-round.

Number of weekly direct peak-season flights to the U.S.

Quebec City
LOS ANGELES, California3
MIAMI, Florida3
ORLANDO, Florida23
SAN FRANCISCO, California2

The South all year

Because Canadians are fond of South getaways even during the summer, Air Transat will offer a selection of its most popular destinations in Mexico and the Caribbean out of Montreal, Quebec City and Toronto.

Number of weekly direct peak-season flights to sun destinations

Quebec City
CANCÚN, Mexico415
PUERTO PLATA, Dominican Republic21
PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic515
SAMANA, Dominican Republic1

More domestic flights and connections

By closely observing the market and emerging travel trends, Air Transat is convinced that the popularity of travel within Canada will still be strong in the summer of 2022, which is why it will continue to enhance its domestic flight program.

These flights will also provide many Canadians with access to international destinations via connections in Toronto and Montreal.

Number of weekly peak-season domestic flights

City-pairNumber of
Air Transat may have to modify its flight schedule subject to the changing COVID-19 situation and resulting travel restrictions.

About Air Transat
Founded in Montreal 35 years ago, Air Transat is a leading leisure travel brand. Voted World’s Best Leisure Airline by passengers at the Skytrax World Airline Awards, it flies to international and Canadian destinations, striving to serve its customers with enthusiasm and friendliness at every stage of their trip or stay, and emphasizing safety throughout. 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., a world-renowned holiday travel provider that achieved Travelife certification in 2018 in recognition of its sustainability commitments.

Recent distinctions and awards

  • World’s Best Leisure Airline at the Skytrax World Airline Awards
  • Named to Forbes World’s Best Employers List
  • Best Tour Operator and Favourite Overall Supplier at the Agents’ Choice Awards presented by Baxter Travel Media
  • Ranked as Canada’s 21st best corporate citizen by Corporate Knights

Air Transat announces direct service between Quebec City and London

The airline also continues to enhance its overall offering out of Jean Lesage International Airport

MONTREAL, Oct. 25, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Transat, (TSX: TRZ) voted World’s Best Leisure Airline, is pleased to announce that it will offer an exclusive non-stop service between Quebec City and London. From May 11 to September 28, 2022, travellers from the province of Quebec’s Capitale-Nationale region will be able to benefit from weekly direct flights to London’s Gatwick airport, making it easier than ever to discover this must-see European destination. At the same time, British tourists will now have direct access to magnificent Quebec City.

From left to right: Joseph Adamo, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Transat; Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB); Geneviève Guilbault, Quebec Deputy Premier, Minister of Public Security and minister responsible for the Capitale-Nationale; Caroline Proulx, Minister of Tourism and minister responsible for the Lanaudière and Bas-Saint-Laurent regions; Robert Mercure, General Manager of Destination Québec cité (CNW Group/Transat A.T. Inc.)
From left to right: Joseph Adamo, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Transat; Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB); Geneviève Guilbault, Quebec Deputy Premier, Minister of Public Security and minister responsible for the Capitale-Nationale; Caroline Proulx, Minister of Tourism and minister responsible for the Lanaudière and Bas-Saint-Laurent regions; Robert Mercure, General Manager of Destination Québec cité (CNW Group/Transat A.T. Inc.)

“We are proud to have been serving Quebec City since our very beginnings more than 30 years ago, and to be the leading international carrier departing from Jean Lesage Airport, with an array of exclusive routes that is constantly being enhanced,” said Joseph Adamo, Chief Sales and Marketing Officer, Transat. “London is the world’s number one international market, and this route’s strong tourism potential is undeniable, both for Quebec travellers and for Britons who want to visit our beautiful province. The addition of this city-pair is an integral part of our strategic plan and our ambitions for developing our offering out of the Capitale-Nationale region.”

Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB), noted: “The addition of a flight to a destination as important as London is a dream come true for us at YQB, but also for many people in the Greater Quebec City area. Although our industry has been severely weakened by the global pandemic, Air Transat has chosen to invest in our market by offering the public a second direct connection to Europe, after Paris. It is essential that passengers return if we are to prove to Air Transat that it was right to place its trust in us.”

Geneviève Guilbault, Quebec Deputy Premier, Minister of Public Security and minister responsible for the Capitale-Nationale region, stated: “The pandemic has impacted the travel industry around the world. This announcement is a breath of fresh air for our airport, for the tourism industry of our beautiful Capitale-Nationale region and for our citizens who are eager to rediscover the pleasure of travelling comfortably and safely.” She added: “I hope that this announcement is just the first of many that will help strengthen Québec City Jean Lesage’s standing as an international airport.”

For her part, Caroline Proulx, Minister of Tourism and minister responsible for the Lanaudière and Bas-Saint-Laurent regions, said: “With this excellent news, Air Transat and Quebec City Jean Lesage International Airport are sending a strong signal that the tourism recovery is well underway, and that the province of Quebec and its Capital-Nationale region remain at the top of the list of popular destinations for European tourists. The creation of a new Quebec City-London route illustrates the success of the efforts made by all the partners in the tourism industry and by your government to maintain our charming Capitale-Nationale’s ability to welcome visitors, as well as its attractiveness throughout the pandemic. The entire tourism industry and the wonderful Capitale-Nationale region will undoubtedly benefit from this new traffic.”

Robert Mercure, General Manager of the Destination Québec cité tourism development organization, stated: “This new Quebec City-London route serve as an important lever for our tourism recovery. Attractions, restaurants, businesses and hotels have been hard hit by the pandemic and the absence of international tourists over the past 18 months. The provincial capital’s flight offering must be diversified if our destination is to remain competitive and we can only welcome this addition, which broadens our market development opportunities.”

London-bound passengers will travel on the new-generation Airbus A321neoLR aircraft, which are perfectly aligned with the company’s ongoing efforts in responsible tourism, including a commitment to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. They consume 15% less fuel, and reduce both noise and NOx greenhouse gas emissions by half.

The route will operate on Wednesdays from Quebec City and Thursdays from London-Gatwick.

Enhanced service from Quebec City for summer 2022

Air Transat is continuing to expand its international service out of Quebec City by offering direct flights to six other destinations for the summer of 2022.

In addition to serving London, Air Transat also plans to restart its service between Quebec City and Paris, enabling travellers to enjoy exclusive service to two of Europe’s major metropolises. Sun-lovers are also sure to find something to their liking thanks to direct flights to Fort Lauderdale, now offered year-round, as well as connections to Cancún in Mexico and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic.

Full details of Air Transat’s 2022 summer flight schedule will be announced shortly. 

About Air Transat
Founded in Montreal 35 years ago, Air Transat is a leading leisure travel brand. Voted World’s Best Leisure Airline by passengers at the Skytrax World Airline Awards, it flies to international and Canadian destinations, striving to serve its customers with enthusiasm and friendliness at every stage of their trip or stay, and emphasizing safety throughout. 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., a world-renowned holiday travel provider that has achieved Travelife certification in 2018 in recognition of its sustainability commitments.

Recent distinctions and awards

  • World’s Best Leisure Airline at the Skytrax World Airline Awards
  • Named to Forbes World’s Best Employers List
  • Best Tour Operator and Favourite Overall Supplier at the Agents’ Choice Awards presented by Baxter Travel Media
  • Ranked as Canada’s 21st best corporate citizen by Corporate Knights

Air Canada Announces Two New Connections to Western Canada From Quebec City Starting Next Summer

  • New seasonal service to Vancouver and Calgary begins May 2022
  • Air Canada continues to increase its presence in Quebec City

MONTREAL, Oct. 21, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada is pleased to announce today two new seasonal services departing from Jean Lesage International Airport in Quebec City: Vancouver and Calgary. Flights to Vancouver will start on May 20, 2022, with up to three flights a week and service to Calgary will debut on May 21, 2022, offering up to four weekly flights. These new routes will be operated by Air Canada Rouge on an Airbus A319, featuring Premium Rouge and Economy services, product enhancements including upgraded streaming entertainment and options to purchase high-speed wi-fi.

Services to Vancouver and Calgary are in addition to two other new routes already announced back in July to Fort Lauderdale and Orlando, starting November 19 and December 17, respectively, and to the increased frequency to Punta Cana and Cancun as of December 20. Also, Air Canada’s capacity to Montreal and Toronto from Quebec City will be returning to 2019 levels by next summer, with eight and five daily flights, respectively.

“This is really exciting news for Quebec City and we are happy to offer new popular destinations to Quebecers who we know love to travel,” said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada. “New services to Vancouver and Calgary will meet the growing demand from the Quebec City market for travel to Western Canada while at the same time allowing tourists from Western Canada to discover and enjoy Quebec City, one of the most famous destinations in the country, with its important cultural and historic sites and lovely landscapes along the St-Lawrence River in Charlevoix. This increased presence and convenient and diversified schedule also demonstrates our commitment to the people of the Capitale-Nationale and our desire to better serve the Jean Lesage International Airport, a long-time partner.”

“This is an important announcement for the citizens of the Quebec City area. Vancouver and Calgary are popular destinations and strategic hubs for Air Canada,” said Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB). “In recent months, the airline has not only taken the decision to quickly restore pre-pandemic routes, but also added frequencies and new destinations to the schedule starting this winter and in the summer of 2022. As part of its recovery strategy, Air Canada is investing in the growth of our market. We are confident that the people of the region will respond.”

“The Québec City’s chamber of commerce and industry is delighted to see the resumption of flights to Quebec City and the addition of new routes to such important destinations”, said Steeve Lavoie, President and CEO, Québec City’s chamber of commerce and industry. “Not only does this make it easier for our businesspeople to travel abroad, but it also allows outside business travellers to land directly in Quebec City. We hope that the business community in the region will take full advantage of these new services by Air Canada and that air service to Quebec City will only grow in the years to come!”

“The addition of these two departures from Quebec City to Western Canada is excellent news for our region”, said Robert Mercure, Director of Destination Québec Cité. “If Quebec City wishes to remain at the top of the list of the most popular destinations in Canada, as it did last summer, it is important to ensure that we offer far-reaching air service. We can only be delighted with these new non-stop services that will allow us to further develop the Canadian tourism market.”

Flight schedule – Summer 2022

AC 1871Quebec CityVancouver09:4512:20Monday,Wednesday, Friday
AC 1870VancouverQuebec City13:1021:07
AC 1873Quebec CityCalgary10:4513:30Tuesday,Thursday,Saturday, Sunday
AC 1872 CalgaryQuebec City14:3020:43

These flights are conveniently timed for connections onward to other destinations in Canada, the US and our international network from either Vancouver or Calgary.

Travelling internationally? Visit our Travel Ready Hub for the latest government entry requirements. Customers are responsible for ensuring they meet all government entry requirements, including holding the correct travel documents, visas, any required health certificates, and all other eligibility requirements for any flights they purchase. Government requirements may change with little notice.

Travel Policy: Book with confidence
Air Canada’s new refund policy is applicable to all tickets purchased. It offers customers the option of a full refund to the original form of payment, an Air Canada Travel Voucher or the equivalent value in Aeroplan Points with a 65% bonus should the airline cancel or reschedule a flight by more than three hours.

About Air Canada

Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline and, in 2019, was among the top 20 largest airlines in the world. It is Canada’s flag carrier and a founding member of Star Alliance, the world’s most comprehensive air transportation network. Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm Skytrax. In 2020, Air Canada was named Global Traveler’s Best Airline in North America for the second straight year. In January 2021, Air Canada received APEX’s Diamond Status Certification for the Air Canada CleanCare+ biosafety program for managing COVID-19, the only airline in Canada to attain the highest APEX ranking. Air Canada has also committed to a net zero emissions goal from all global operations by 2050.

Porter Airlines vs Air Canada: Flying to and from a reopened Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport

From The AU Review – link to source story

Larry Heath | September 30, 2021

Earlier this month, Toronto’s central Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport re-opened for the first time to travellers since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, as the airport’s primary commercial carriers, Porter Airlines, resumed domestic services.

The airport – which I’ve previously called one of the world’s most convenient – is unique due to its location and size. Its complete commercial closure was also a rarity on an international level – though given the length of the pandemic, Porter’s decision to shut down services completely (not just at this airport) proved a sound decision.

My flight out of Billy Bishop Airport on opening weekend though was the sole Air Canada route out of the terminal, YTZ to YUL (Montreal, Quebec).

The flight to Montreal was an easy affair – just minutes through security, with no notable differences to the experience pre-pandemic. Surprisingly no vaccination checks, and no temperature check (as I recently experienced on a trip to Vancouver) – though sanitisation stations are everywhere as are mask reminders – the latter being a feature both in the lounge and on board Air Canada’s Bombardier Q400.

The departures terminal – which no longer features complimentary snacks and drinks as it did once upon a time – had a Balzac Coffee shop and a Newsagency open for the 10am flight post security, and a bar would open later in the day. There’s ample, comfortable seating in the lounge, and plenty of room for social distancing.

With small capacity flights and limited services at present, it’s a great time to fly – the airport was very quiet. It’s also worth mentioning that Domestic and International travellers are separated both through the security process and in at the gates themselves.

Domestically, I believe this is the only service where Air Canada will provide alcoholic beverages free of charge, to match the service offered by Porter on the same route. They’ll make you a Caesar, serve beer or wine, or a number of other spirits – plus tea, coffee, soft drinks and juices. I daresay the wonderful staff go so far as to encourage the Caesar at 10am, which I was not complaining about.

They also provide Miss Vickies Potato Chips or Kit Kat Chocolates amongst a small selection of complimentary snacks. A packet of sanitizer and masks are also handed out as you board – something they’re doing across all their routes. The flight was on time, and a wonderful experience.

My return flight with Porter Airlines was actually their first returning to the Quebec City (YQB) – Billy Bishop (YTZ) route. Quebec City is about three hours out of Montreal, and a wonderful city to visit whenever you get the chance. The flight from Billy Bishop to Montreal is a little over an hour, while to Quebec City it’s closer to 90 minutes.

At Quebec City Airport, we were greeted to an almost empty airport as well, and the flight, which had only resumed service that day, was almost empty as well. Staff were fantastic though, and I felt very looked after. Seats are comfortable, but don’t recline on the De Havilland Dash 8-400, which like Air Canada’s Bombardier Q400 operates in a 2-2 layout throughout the whole cabin.

Shortly after take off, wine, beer and soft drinks were served, with chips, almonds or cookies. I enjoyed a lovely red wine. Unlike with Air Canada, no masks or sanitizer were handed out on the Porter flight, though I’m sure they would have given you some if you’d asked. And to top it all off: the flight arrived well ahead of schedule.

Something worth mentioning with Porter, is that if you want to have a carry on (something that doesn’t fit under the seat in front of you), make sure you pay for that when you buy the ticket – it gets more expensive in the leadup to the flight. Air Canada include this with your ticket, but Porter do not.

No vaccination checks were made on either flight, or at either airport, which was confusing given the recent federal mandates. It left me wondering if it’s a staggered arrangement with airlines and terminals, or if some just haven’t gotten their act together in time? Given how important these mandates are on restoring consumer confidence in a country that has an almost 85% vaccination rate, here’s hoping they figure that out.

Final Verdict

Comparing these two airlines is a tough one, as the service was nearly identical. Air Canada slightly outshined Porter thanks to the complimentary spirits, but don’t expect that on any other Air Canada flight. Where as beer and wine are a given on all Porter routes. The inclusion of carry on baggage in your ticket also gives Air Canada a point over Porter – but the prices remain comparable all the same.

The service from both airlines was professional, friendly and the experience was a comfortable one from start to finish. It helped that the airports were both exceptionally quiet as well – meaning it was a breeze at all points of the experience. Not something to expect at all times, of course.

I would highly recommend flying on either airline in or out of Billy Bishop – if you can avoid the madness of Toronto’s primary airport (Pearson, YYZ), you absolutely should.

International flights to and from the USA resume for Porter have also resumed this month, and once again Billy Bishop will serve as the preferred entry point (over the crowded Pearson) for visitors crossing the North American border (which recently re-opened to non-essential travel. So definitely check out Porter Airline’s website for all their routes.

The only confusion really was over Vaccinations. For all this talk of Quebec & Canadian vaccination requisites, I didn’t get checked at Toronto City nor Quebec City Airport, nor by Porter or Air Canada. I do wonder how this process will develop over time – after all, the current plan is to require all domestic travellers are vaccinated. But after this trip, it’s hard to know exactly how this is currently being implemented.

All Airbus: Air Canada Rouge Goes Full Narrowbody

From Simply Flying – link to source story – Thanks CW

by James Pearson | September 20, 2021

Air Canada Rouge, the lower-cost subsidiary and leisure airline of the Canadian flag carrier, took to the skies again in September. With the B767-300ER gone, its 39-strong fleet is now exclusively Airbus. They’re used on 60 routes until the end of the year as it rebuilds its network.

The A321 is crucial to Air Canada Rouge, with this example delivered directly to the carrier in 2015. Photo: Liam Allport via Flickr.

Air Canada Rouge has resumed flying

Air Canada Rouge relaunched with an initial three routes from Toronto: Las Vegas, Orlando, and Regina, in the distant province of Saskatchewan. These were joined by Toronto to Cancun and Tampa a few days later, with all five routes using 200-seat A321ceos.

These were its first flights since February, with the seven-month grounding due to Canada’s non-essential travel ban and the suspension of all flights to the Caribbean and Mexico – two of its essential markets – at the request of the Canadian government. Rouge’s resumption coincided with Canada reopening its borders on September 7th to fully vaccinated foreigners.

Air Canada Rouge A321
Most international routes are by the A321 with stronger economics than the A319/A320. Remember, it is a lower-cost airline, i.e. about the cost of production rather than fares. Photo: Air Canada.

Now exclusively Airbus

Rouge’s fleet is now entirely narrowbody, shows, with 20 A319s, 14 A321s, and just five A320s. This follows the retirement of its B767-300ERs, of which it had 25 at one point.

Its 767s were, of course, mainly used long-haul, including across Europe and South America, and the type’s routes had an average of 2,378 miles, OAG indicates. At 5,063 miles, Toronto-Athens was its longest-ever 767 route, but Toronto to Las Vegas had the most flights.

Air Canada Rouge A319
Air Canada Rouge has 20 A319s, with an average age of 23.5 years. Photo: Air Canada.

Currently, five aircraft are active

According to and confirmed by Flightradar24, only five of its 39-strong fleet – some 13% – is currently active, all A321s. Its A321 fleet has an average age of just 6.1 years, far younger than its A319s (23.5 years; to be retired) and A320s (14.2 years). The younger A321s were delivered directly to Air Canada Rouge.

No widebodies go hand-in-hand with Rouge previously saying that it’ll concentrate on routes within narrowbody range. Air Canada will instead operate suitably good-performing long-haul routes – many have already switched – in a rejigging of networks and focusing on relative strengths.

One of many examples is Toronto to Edinburgh, which was by Rouge’s 767s and from 2022 will instead be by its parent’s Boeing 737 MAX 8s from June 1st. It’ll compete directly with WestJet. Another: Toronto to Bogota, in Rouge’s hands from 2016, is now by Air Canada’s B787s and A330-300s.

Air Canada Rouge
Air Canada Rouge had up to 25 B767-300ERs. Photo: Tomás Del Coro via Flickr.

What’s the plan to the end of the year?

Between September 20th and December 31st, Rouge has scheduled 60 routes. Thirty-nine of these are to/from Toronto, with most of the rest from Montreal. With over 2,700 outbound flights planned, the domestic market has almost four in ten departures, comprising eight routes from Toronto.

Air Canada Rouge's network Sept 1st to Dec 31st
This is Air Canada Rouge’s network between September 20th and December 31st. Image: OAG Mapper.

Toronto to Québec City has the most flights

Some 13 international countries will welcome Rouge’s flights, with the US the most-served, followed by Cuba, Mexico, Dominican Republic, and the Cayman Islands. Toronto to Miami has the most international flights, as shown below, although the 456-mile domestic link from Toronto to Québec City (YQB) is the most-served, with 28 weekly departures from November.

  1. Toronto-Québec City
  2. Toronto-Moncton
  3. Toronto-Thunder Bay
  4. Toronto-Miami
  5. Toronto-Las Vegas
  6. Toronto-Tampa
  7. Toronto-Fort Myers
  8. Toronto-Fredericton
  9. Montreal-Orlando
  10. Montreal-Miami

Porter Airlines returns to the air

TORONTO, Sept. 8, 2021 /CNW/ – Porter Airlines officially returns to the skies today, almost 18 months after suspending flights due to COVID-19 public health and travel restrictions.

Porter Airlines officially returns to the skies today, almost 18 months after suspending flights due to COVID-19 public health and travel restrictions. (CNW Group/Porter Airlines)
Porter Airlines officially returns to the skies today, almost 18 months after suspending flights due to COVID-19 public health and travel restrictions. (CNW Group/Porter Airlines)

Flights to Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa and Thunder Bay are the first to restart. Other Canadian destinations starting within the next 10 days are Halifax, Quebec City, St. John’s, NL, and Moncton. U.S. destinations in Boston, Chicago, New York and Washington return on Sept. 17. Flights to other year-round destinations are set to resume as of Oct. 6, with all routes currently available for booking. The initial flight schedule can be found at

“Our passengers and team members have been waiting for this day to arrive,” said Michael Deluce, president and CEO, Porter Airlines. “We currently have over 900 team members who have put in countless hours to get everything ready for our return to service, with more being recalled or hired every week. Everyone at Porter is looking forward to welcoming passengers back and delivering our distinct style of service again.”

Toronto Mayor John Tory joins the celebrations at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.

Porter has strengthened its existing standards with a focus on high levels of sanitization in order to protect the health of its passengers and team members. More information about the Healthy Flights program can be found on Porter’s website.

In addition to Healthy Flights, Porter has also introduced a COVID-19 Vaccination Policy for its team members. To support a safe and healthy workplace and travel experience, team members must present a negative COVID-19 test administered within 72 hours of the start of their shift or be fully vaccinated. The Canadian federal government announced in August its intention to mandate vaccination for federally-regulated workers; once specific details are known, Porter’s policy may evolve.

Bookings made before Sept. 30, will be eligible to change or cancel with no fees. Passengers also have the option to book a flight with the Full Refund Option for $40 plus taxes. The Refund Option entitles customers to receive a refund, including base fare, taxes and fees, for their booking upon advance cancellation of their flight for any reason.

About Porter Airlines

Porter Airlines provides a warm and effortless approach to hospitality, restoring glamour and refinement to air travel. Porter is an Official 4 Star Airline® in the World Airline Star Rating®.

The airline currently offers flights to Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec City, Fredericton, Saint John, Moncton, Halifax, St. John’s, Thunder Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury, Timmins, Windsor, New York (Newark), Chicago (Midway), Boston and Washington (Dulles), and has seasonal flights to Mt. Tremblant, Que., Muskoka, Ont., Myrtle Beach, S.C., and Stephenville, N.L.

Visit or follow @porterairlines on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Details of growth plans to provide North America-wide service are available at 

Sunwing returns to Québec City with weekly flights to popular sun destinations starting in November

Tour operator returns to the provincial capital and gateway for its 15th anniversary


Sunwing has announced it will be offering convenient weekly flights to ten different sun destinations this winter from Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport, right in time for the holidays. The news follows on the heels of a recent survey commissioned by Sunwing which revealed that 51% of Quebec respondents plan on returning to travel within the next 12 months, with 65% interested in an all inclusive vacation and 39% expressing their intent to travel this upcoming holiday season. As part of Sunwing’s commitment to the Quebec market, flights for the 2021-2022 season from Québec City will commence on November 1, 2021 and will run weekly until April 25, 2022, with additional routes available from Montreal and Saguenay-Bagotville.

This season marks Sunwing’s 15-year anniversary with Québec City, after its first flight from the gateway took off on December 18, 2006 for La Romana in the Dominican Republic. The tour operator has a longstanding presence in the province, with two planes based for the season out of Québec City and nearly 100 airline crew. Sunwing also recently invested further in the local community by moving its Quebec headquarters into a new building in Laval that provides a home base for hundreds of employees across various divisions.

“The Québec market has been an integral part of our operations since Sunwing’s inaugural flights from the region in 2006, and our convenient flights are well loved by consumers and travel agencies alike,” commented Sam Char, Vice President for Sunwing Quebec. “By offering three Québécois gateways this season – Montreal, Quebec City and Saguenay-Bagotville – travellers will have even more options to choose from under our wing. We pride ourselves on offering frictionless travel experiences and look forward to helping make vacation dreams come true for another 15 years and beyond.”

The flight schedule from Québec City will be as follows:

  • Between Québec City and Cayo Coco, Cuba, Sundays from November 7, 2021 until April 10, 2022; and Wednesdays from December 8, 2021 until April 20, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Holguin, Cuba, Sundays from December 5, 2021 until April 10, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Cayo Santa Maria, Cuba, Saturdays from November 6, 2021 until April 9, 2022; and Wednesdays from December 8, 2021 until April 20, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Varadero, Cuba, Mondays and Fridays from November 1, 2021 until April 25, 2022; and Wednesdays and Saturdays from December 8, 2021 until April 13, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Cancun, Mexico, Fridays and Sundays from November 5, 2021 until April 24, 2022; and Mondays from November 22, 2021 until April 11, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Mazatlán, Mexico, Tuesdays from December 14, 2021 until April 12, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, Fridays from December 17, 2021 until April 15, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, Thursdays and Saturdays from November 4, 2021 until April 21, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic, Tuesdays from December 2, 2021 until April 12, 2022
  • Between Québec City and Miami, Florida, Saturdays from January 8, 2022 until April 16, 2022

“We are delighted that Sunwing is returning to Québec City this winter with flights to sun destinations that are well loved by Quebecois customers, including Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Cuba and Miami,” said Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB). “We appreciate Sunwing’s confidence in our market and look forward to continuing this long-standing relationship. We are excited to welcome Sunwing passengers back to YQB as the departure gateway for their next vacation.”

In addition to flights from Quebec City, residents of the province can explore 20 different destinations from Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport including the vacation hotspots of Los Cabos and St. Maarten, and four different destinations from Saguenay-Bagotville Airport. No matter where they take off from, customers can travel with peace of mind knowing that the highest Canadian standards are in place throughout their entire vacation experience as part of the Safe with Sunwing commitment.

About Sunwing

The largest integrated travel company in North America, Sunwing has more flights to the south than any other leisure carrier with convenient direct service from airports across Canada to popular sun destinations across the U.S.A., Caribbean, Mexico and Central America. This scale enables Sunwing to offer customers exclusive deals at top-rated resorts in the most popular vacation destinations as well as cruise packages and seasonal domestic flight service. Sunwing customers benefit from the assistance of the company’s own knowledgeable destination representatives, who greet them upon arrival and support them throughout their vacation journey. The company supports the communities where it operates through the Sunwing Foundation, a charitable initiative focused on the support and development of youth and humanitarian aid.

Government of Canada makes major investments to ensure the recovery of Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport

Transport Canada

QUEBEC CITY, Aug. 6, 2021 /CNW/ – The Government of Canada is committed to supporting Canadian airports to ensure their recovery and growth following the COVID-19 global pandemic and to create good middle class jobs.

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, and the President of the Treasury Board, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos announced that the Government of Canada is contributing nearly $17 million to support Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport.

Out of that amount, $12.5 million, under the National Trade Corridors Fund, will go towards increasing the air cargo transporting capacity at Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport. The funds will specifically be used to develop an air cargo centre. The 5,600 square metre building will also include a dedicated space for regional air carriers that need space to serve remote areas.

In addition to this funding, the Government of Canada is also providing the Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport with over $4.2 million from Transport Canada’s Airport Relief Fund to help it maintain its operations, including essential air services for residents and workers in Quebec City and nearby communities.


“By investing in the Jean Lesage International Airport, we’re helping Québec City grow and ensure its recovery. We’re also creating good jobs for the middle class and new economic opportunities for the people of Quebec. This is all part of our objective to build back better after the pandemic.”  

The Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport

“Along with the recent news that the Jean Lesage International Airport will start welcoming international vaccinated travellers as of August 9, today’s announcement will have a positive impact on Quebec’s regional economy, in helping the air sector recover from the economic impacts of the pandemic. This multi-million-dollar investment will provide much needed financial support as we ease out of border restrictions. In addition, this new air cargo center will diversify our airport’s revenues as we open up transportation corridors serving Canadians.”

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
President of the Treasury Board and Member of Parliament for Québec

“I am beyond excited about this contribution. This generous investment from the Government of Canada will not only help Quebec’s air cargo sector, but will create new employment opportunities for the people of Quebec and help grow our economy after this devastating epidemic. Employment opportunities like these are essential to generate a better and more sustainable economy.”

Joël Lightbound
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness and Member of Parliament for Louis-Hébert

“The vitality and attractiveness of a region depend in large part on the strength of its airport, and we share with the Government of Canada the desire to see the greater Québec City region perform well in the context of economic recovery. The funding announced today allows us to take a giant step towards the realization of the cargo platform project. This is excellent news for our airport, of course, but also for our carriers and for companies in the industrial sectors of the Québec City region, the East and the North, which are particularly sensitive to delivery times.”  

Stéphane Poirier
President and CEO, Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport

Quick Facts

  • As announced in 2017, the National Trade Corridors Fund is providing $2.3 billion over 11 years for projects that strengthen the efficiency and resilience of the transportation system.
  • Budget 2021 provided an additional $1.9 billion for the National Trade Corridors Fund for strategic transportation investments across Canada. The additional funding will spur investments into much-needed enhancements to Canada’s roads, rail, and shipping routes, while also building long-term resilience for the Canadian economy, and supporting internal trade.
  • In Quebec, the National Trade Corridors Fund has provided $252 million for 12 projects since 2017. With partner contributions, this has brought $564 million of total investments into ports, airports, and railway projects.
  • The Airport Relief Fund, launched in May 2021, will provide $64.8 million in funding in 2021-2022 for airports whose 2019 revenues were less than $250 million.
  • The amount of funding to each eligible Airport Relief Fund recipient was calculated using a tiered formula-based approach, based on 2019 revenues.
  • Funding provided from the Airport Relief Fund must be used to cover activities that are directly related to the airport’s operations to ensure that the airport remains open to travellers and surrounding communities.

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Air Transat inaugurates its first direct flight between Vancouver and Quebec City

VANCOUVER, BC, Aug. 2, 2021 /CNW/ – Air Transat celebrates the launch of its brand-new direct service between Vancouver and Quebec City, becoming the first and only airline to operate this route. Flights will be offered once a week, on Mondays from Vancouver and on Sundays from Quebec City, until October 25.

From left to right: Charles Thivierge – Captain; Linda Lancup – Flight Attendant; Marie-Josée Paiement – Flight Attendant; Mario Blais – Captain; Sonia Renaud – Flight Director; Ghislain Charette – Flight Attendant (CNW Group/Transat A.T. Inc.)
From left to right: Charles Thivierge – Captain; Linda Lancup – Flight Attendant; Marie-Josée Paiement – Flight Attendant; Mario Blais – Captain; Sonia Renaud – Flight Director; Ghislain Charette – Flight Attendant (CNW Group/Transat A.T. Inc.)

“It was only natural for us to add this route to our summer schedule,” says Joseph Adamo, Transat’s Chief Sales and Marketing Officer. “As we predicted, travellers are showing a strong interest in domestic destinations, so we are pleased to offer them this new route linking two of Canada’s most important tourist hubs.”

This morning, to mark the inauguration of this new route, the 163 passengers of the very first TS969 flight from Vancouver were welcomed in a festive manner at the Vancouver International Airport (YVR). This comes a day after 185 passengers boarded the inaugural TS968 flight from Quebec City’s Jean Lesage International Airport (YQB).

“We are thrilled to welcome Air Transat back to Canada’s skies with its new service connecting YVR to beautiful Quebec City,” says Tamara Vrooman, President and CEO of Vancouver International Airport. “The addition of this seasonal flight provides travellers with more options when flying domestically from YVR and is a strong signal of confidence from Air Transat as it rejoins Canada’s airlines in the effort to reopen travel and tourism across the country, safely and in a measured approach. At YVR, we are ready to welcome back all passengers to the airport and are committed to delivering a safe and seamless experience to our passengers who, thanks to Air Transat, now have another great destination to visit direct from Vancouver.”

“Now that we can start travelling again, Air Transat is inviting people from Quebec City to discover Western Canada starting this summer,” says Stéphane Poirier, President and CEO of Quebec City’s Jean Lesage International Airport. “The addition of flights to Vancouver meets a demand expressed by the population for many years and is aligned with our objective to improve air service from Quebec City. We welcome Air Transat’s confidence in our market. We hope that passengers will choose YQB as their departure point for their next trip.”

The route will be operated by next-generation Airbus A321neoLR aircraft, which feature spacious cabins and state-of-the-art in-seat entertainment systems and have the lowest fuel consumption and greenhouse gas (CO2 and NOx) emissions in their class.

This summer, from Vancouver, Air Transat will also offer direct flights to Montreal and Toronto. 

About Air Transat
Air Transat is a leading leisure travel brand established nearly 35 years ago that offers domestic and connecting flights within Canada as well as international flights to destinations of choice in the Americas and Europe. Air Transat and its personnel strive to serve travellers with enthusiasm and friendliness, emphasizing safety at all stages of their travel experience. The carrier’s multiple initiatives aimed at reducing its carbon emissions include operation of a fleet of new-generation Airbus aircraft and development of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). Air Transat has been voted World’s Best Leisure Airline by passengers at the Skytrax World Airline Awards.

Air Transat is a business unit of Transat A.T. Inc., an integrated international tourism company headquartered in Montreal that was awarded Travelife certification in 2018 in recognition of its sustainability commitments. Visit or follow us on Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and Facebook.

Recent distinctions and awards

  • World’s Best Leisure Airline at the Skytrax World Airline Awards
  • Ranked 2nd Travel and Leisure Company and 57th overall on Forbes World’s Best Employers List
  • Best Tour Operator and Favourite Overall Supplier at the Agents’ Choice Awards presented by Baxter Travel Media

Government of Canada announces easing of border measures for fully vaccinated travellers

From: Public Health Agency of Canada

News release

International flights carrying passengers will be permitted to land at five additional Canadian airports

July 19, 2021 | Ottawa | Public Health Agency of Canada

The Government of Canada is prioritizing the health and safety of everyone in Canada by taking a risk-based and measured approach to re-opening our borders. Thanks to the hard work of Canadians, rising vaccination rates and declining COVID-19 cases, the Government of Canada is able to move forward with adjusted border measures.

On September 7, 2021, provided that the domestic epidemiologic situation remains favourable, the Government intends to open Canada’s borders to any fully vaccinated travellers who have completed the full course of vaccination with a Government of Canada-accepted vaccine at least 14 days prior to entering Canada and who meet specific entry requirements.

As a first step, starting August 9, 2021, Canada plans to begin allowing entry to American citizens and permanent residents, who are currently residing in the United States, and have been fully vaccinated at least 14 days prior to entering Canada for non-essential travel. This preliminary step allows for the Government of Canada to fully operationalize the adjusted border measures ahead of September 7, 2021, and recognizes the many close ties between Canadians and Americans.

Subject to limited exceptions, all travellers must use ArriveCAN (app or web portal) to submit their travel information. If they are eligible to enter Canada and meet specific criteria, fully vaccinated travellers will not have to quarantine upon arrival in Canada.

To further support these new measures, Transport Canada is expanding the scope of the existing Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) that currently directs scheduled international commercial passenger flights into four Canadian Airports: Montréal-Trudeau International Airport, Toronto Pearson International Airport, Calgary International Airport, and Vancouver International Airport.

Effective August 9, 2021, international flights carrying passengers will be permitted to land at the following five additional Canadian airports:

  • Halifax Stanfield International Airport;
  • Québec City Jean Lesage International Airport;
  • Ottawa Macdonald–Cartier International Airport;
  • Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport; and
  • Edmonton International Airport.

These airports, in cooperation with the Public Health Agency of Canada, the Canada Border Services Agency and Transport Canada, are working to implement the measures necessary to safely welcome international passengers as soon as possible after August 9, as conditions dictate.

All travellers, regardless of vaccination status, will still require a pre-entry COVID-19 molecular test result. However effective August 9, 2021, the Government of Canada is adjusting its post-arrival testing strategy for fully vaccinated travellers. Using a new border testing surveillance program at airports and land border crossings, fully vaccinated travellers will not need a post-arrival test unless they have been randomly selected to complete a Day 1 COVID-19 molecular test. There are no changes to the mandatory testing requirements for unvaccinated travellers.

This strategy allows the Government of Canada to continue monitoring variants of concern in Canada and vaccine effectiveness. Using these layers of protection, the Government of Canada can monitor the COVID-19 situation in Canada, respond quickly to threats, and guide decisions on restricting international travel.

Finally, with the advent of increased vaccination rates in Canada, declining COVID-19 cases and reduced pressure on health care capacity, the three-night government authorized hotel stay requirement will be eliminated for all travellers arriving by air as of 12:01 A.M. EDT on August 9. Fully vaccinated travellers who meet the requirements will be exempt from quarantine; however, all travellers must still provide a quarantine plan and be prepared to quarantine, in case it is determined at the border that they do not meet the necessary requirements.

While Canada continues to trend in the right direction, the epidemiological situation and vaccination coverage is not the same around the world. The Government of Canada continues to advise Canadians to avoid non-essential travel outside of Canada – international travel increases your risk of exposure to COVID-19 and its variants, as well as of spreading it to others. Border measures also remain subject to change as the epidemiological situation evolves. As Canada looks to welcome fully vaccinated travellers from the U.S., the federal government will continue to monitor the situation and provide updated travel advice to Canadians.


“Canadians’ safety and security always come first. With rising vaccination rates and fewer cases in Canada, we can begin to safely ease border measures. A gradual approach to reopening will allow our health authorities to monitor the COVID-19 situation here and abroad. Canadians have worked hard and sacrificed for each other, and because of that work, we can take these next steps safely.”

The Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Health

“The health and safety of Canadians remains our top priority. Using a risk-based and measured approach to easing border measures will allow for non-essential international travellers who meet vaccination and other requirements to enter Canada. Working collaboratively with provinces, territories, Indigenous partners, and others to encourage Canadians to get vaccinated and follow public health advice is enabling us to begin welcoming more travellers back to Canada. Our government will continue to work with Canadian and international partners to ensure the border reopening is done in a safe and responsible way.”

The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc
President of the Queen’s Privy Council for Canada and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs

“The Government of Canada recognizes that people have been anxiously awaiting a re-opening of the border to the world. We have been fully engaged with our American counterparts given the deep economic and family ties between our two countries. Today’s announcement is another big step in our approach to easing border measures which is guided by facts, scientific evidence and the advice of our public health experts.”

The Honourable Bill Blair
Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

“Thanks to the extraordinary commitment of Canadians to getting vaccinated and following public health advice, we are seeing improvement in the public health situation in Canada. As a result, today we announced new steps in our re-opening approach, including that international flights carrying passengers will be allowed to land at five more Canadian airports.”

The Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport Canada

“Thanks to the incredible progress that Canadians have made in our fight against the pandemic, we are now able to take the next step in Canada’s gradual reopening of the border. We look forward to welcoming fully vaccinated Americans shortly, followed by travellers from the rest of the world in early September. Not only will this make a big difference for Canada’s travel and tourism industry and all those whose jobs depend on it, it will also make it easier for those with a Confirmation of Permanent Residence letter to come to Canada and play a role in our recovery from the pandemic.”

The Honourable Marco Mendicino
Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada

“The easing of Canada’s border measures is welcome news for tourism businesses across the country, the thousands of Canadians employed by the sector and the communities who rely on it. It has been a challenging year as we balance the need to protect both the health of Canadians and our economy but tourism businesses have demonstrated incredible resilience. Our government has been proud to be by their side since the beginning of this crisis and we will continue to be there as they prepare to begin to welcome vaccinated travellers from around the world to our beautiful shores.”

The Honourable Melanie Joly
Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages

Quick Facts

  • To be eligible to enter Canada for discretionary travel on the basis of vaccination status, travellers must use the ArriveCAN app or web portal. Travellers must ensure that mandatory requirements are met prior to departing for Canada. In addition, some provinces and territories may have their own entry restrictions in place. Check and follow both the federal and any provincial or territorial restrictions and requirements before travelling.
  • In addition to receiving a full series of a vaccine authorized by the Government of Canada, fully vaccinated travellers must also: provide COVID-19-related information electronically through ArriveCAN (app or web portal) including proof of vaccination prior to arrival in Canada; meet the pre-entry testing requirements; be asymptomatic upon arrival; and have a paper or digital copy of their vaccination documentation in English or French (or certified translation) ready to show a government official on request as evidence.
  • A person who submits false information on vaccination status could be liable to a fine of up to $750,000 or six months imprisonment or both, under the Quarantine Act, or prosecution under the Criminal Code for forgery. Violating any quarantine or isolation instructions provided to travellers by a screening officer or quarantine officer when entering Canada is also an offence under the Quarantine Act and could lead to a $5,000 fine for each day of non-compliance or for each offence committed, or more serious penalties, including six months in prison and/or $750,000 in fines. Non-compliant air travellers may also be subject to fines of up to $5,000 for each offence committed under the Aeronautics Act.
  • Based on public health advice, Transport Canada has extended the Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) that restricts all direct commercial and private passenger flights to Canada from India for an additional 30 days (i.e. until August 21, 2021, at 23:59 EDT). All direct commercial and private passenger flights to Canada from India are subject to the NOTAM. Cargo-only operations, medical transfers or military flights are not included. Transport Canada has also extended the requirement related to third-country pre-departure COVID-19 tests for travellers to Canada from India via an indirect route. This means that passengers who depart India to Canada via an indirect route will continue to be required to obtain a COVID-19 pre-departure test from a third country other than India before continuing their journey to Canada.

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