Rise Higher: Air Canada Launches New Brand Spot and Proudly Flies The Flag Transporting Team Canada to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games

MONTREAL, July 21, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada today unveiled its comprehensive program in support of Team Canada’s journey to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, which includes today’s launch of “Rise Higher”, a new brand spot. The airline began flying Team Canada athletes, coaches and support staff from Toronto and Vancouver to Japan on July 1 onboard a 787 Dreamliner in a special livery. Air Canada is further celebrating the country’s athletes through innovative activations, exclusive access and engagement opportunities for fans.

“As a proud supporter of Team Canada going to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, we are transporting more than 740 Olympians and Paralympians, coaches and support staff. The Canadian Olympic and Paralympic teams represent the very best of Canada when they fly our country’s flag at the world’s foremost sports competition, and in support and celebration of our country’s athletes, we created a special ‘Fly the Flag’ livery to honour them,” said Andrew Shibata, Vice President – Brand at Air Canada.

“Our country’s athletes inspire so many of us with their drive, focus and determination to be the best at what they do. Their resilience to keep working towards their goals despite the challenges that came up with the pandemic is motivating. We are proud to pay tribute to them with the launch of a new brand spot titled ‘Rise Higher’ that will be featured during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony. We are also excited to engage Canadian fans to cheer on and connect with Team Canada in unique and innovative ways with never-before-seen initiatives that have been developed to enable fans to experience the 2020 Games as if they were there,” concluded Mr. Shibata.

“We are so proud to have Air Canada fly our team to and from Tokyo 2020 this summer. After a difficult year, we know our athletes will be ready to compete thanks to the world-class comfort and professionalism that Air Canada brings to every flight,” said Jacquie Ryan, Chief Brand & Commercial Officer of the Canadian Olympic Committee.

“Thank you to Air Canada for all of its support leading into Tokyo 2020,” said Catherine Gosselin-Després, Executive Director, Sport of the Canadian Paralympic Committee. “Boarding the flight to the host city is a significant part of the overall experience and the unofficial start of the Games for most, and we are confident our athletes, coaches, and support staff will feel comfortable en route to Tokyo thanks to Air Canada.”

In addition to its unwavering support in transporting Team Canada safely to and from the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, Air Canada is proud to:

  • Premier its new “Rise Higher” brand spot during the Olympic Games Opening Ceremony broadcast, which is being released concurrently online via Air Canada’s social media channels;
  • In collaboration with CBC/Radio-Canada, encourage Canadians to share how they #FlytheFlag/#HautLeDrapeau as they cheer on Team Canada in Tokyo. Canadians could win two round-trip tickets to anywhere Air Canada flies in North America or a spot to participate in one of six exclusive virtual experiences where they will have a unique opportunity to talk to athletes live from Tokyo;
  • Give Canadian fans the chance to interact with some athletes and be among the first to welcome them back home while they are onboard their Air Canada flight through one of five Twitter Q&A sessions hosted by Team Canada. Details on how to participate will be posted via Team Canada’s social channels;
  • Support athletes travelling from major airports across Canada with Air Canada’s own employee-driven initiative that involves the collaboration and dedicated efforts of Air Canada employees to ensure a seamless customer experience;
  • Give athletes distinctive, individual care kits, including Canadian-made travel essentials to make their flight more comfortable, a complimentary Wi-Fi streaming pass courtesy of our partner Intelsat, and Aeroplan points;
  • Provide all athletes with complimentary 35K status which includes free checked bags, through the Aeroplan Elite Podium Program;
  • Celebrate Team Canada’s journey with a special seat sale from Canada to all destinations Air Canada flies to. Seats are available for booking now, with further details at aircanada.com.

Air Canada has been a sponsor of the Canadian Olympic Team since 1988 and a sponsor of the Canadian Paralympic Team since 2007.

Travelling internationally? Find the latest government entry requirements via IATA’s Timatic website. 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.

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. 

Air Canada Ready to Reconnect Canada and U.S. Travel With Up to 220 Daily Flights Between the Two Countries

Air Canada A220-300 C-GROV
Air Canada Airbus 220-300 C-GROV
  • Most extensive Canada-U.S. transborder schedule supports both countries’ economies
  • Air Canada App enabling customers to securely scan, upload and validate COVID-19 test results expanded to all flights from U.S. to Canada

MONTREAL, July 19, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada today announced its current summer transborder schedule including 55 routes and 34 destinations in the U.S., with up to 220 daily flights between the U.S. and Canada. The new schedule coincides with the loosening of restrictions on travel between the two countries as of Aug. 9, 2021, enabling fully vaccinated Americans to enter Canada for non-essential travel and the removal of quarantine hotel requirements, relaxed testing requirements allowing Canadians taking short transborder trips for less than 72 hours to do their pre-entry tests in Canada, among other measures to ease restrictions. 

Seats are available for booking at aircanada.com, via the Air Canada App, Air Canada’s Contact Centres and travel agencies.

“The easing of travel restrictions announced today by the federal government is an important step based on science, and we are very pleased to rebuild our Canada-U.S. network. Canada and the United States share close ties and restoring air connectivity will contribute to both countries’ economic recovery. Air Canada’s proud tradition of being the largest foreign carrier in the U.S. is reflected in our schedule which has been developed to provide a wide range of choices for customers in both countries, appealing to Canadian customers interested in travelling to popular U.S. destinations, and to U.S. residents looking to visit and explore Canada’s spectacular sights and hospitality. Our schedule also enables convenient onward travel through our Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal hubs to and from our global destinations. We are planning to restore services to all 57 U.S. destinations previously served as conditions allow. We sincerely look forward to welcoming our customers onboard,” said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada.

“We are thrilled with this announcement and look forward to welcoming back travellers from the U.S.,” said Marsha Walden, President and CEO of Destination Canada. “From our lively cities immersed in nature to spectacular wilderness and coastlines to the unique mosaic of Indigenous and global cultures, every day in Canada offers a new adventure and a chance to reconnect with what’s important. Team Canada is ready to host our American friends!”  

New digital solution via Air Canada App simplifies COVID-19 related document requirements

Air Canada has developed a new digital solution via the Air Canada App, enabling customers flying from the U.S. to Canada and between Canada and select European destinations to conveniently and securely scan and upload COVID-19 test results to validate compliance with government travel requirements prior to arriving at the airport. More information is at: https://www.aircanada.com/ca/en/aco/home/book/travel-news-and-updates/2020/covid-19/document-validation.html.

Transborder services

The airline’s transborder services include wide-body aircraft featuring Air Canada Signature Class with lie-flat seating and Premium Economy Class on select routes between Toronto and Los Angeles.

In early August, Air Canada’s onboard services will resume on transborder flights greater than two hours, with new Economy Class Bistro selections being gradually introduced, including products by Canadian brands and partners such as Nomz vegan energy balls, celebrated Montreal Chef Jérôme Ferrer-inspired meals and more. 

All customers can collect and redeem Aeroplan Points through Canada’s leading loyalty program when travelling with Air Canada, and eligible customers have access to priority check-in, Maple Leaf Lounges at Canadian airports, priority boarding and other benefits.

New Refund Policy gives customer choices and options

Air Canada’s new refund policy of offering customers options of refunds, an Air Canada Travel Voucher or equivalent value in Aeroplan Points with a 65% bonus should the airline cancel or reschedule a flight by more than three hours, is applicable to all tickets purchased. 

Air Canada’s commercial schedule may be adjusted as required based on the COVID-19 trajectory and government restrictions.

Montreal – USA routesFrequencies per week
Montreal-Boston14
Montreal-Chicago21
Montreal-Denver7
Montreal-Newark14
Montreal-Fort Lauderdale7
Montreal-Houston7
Montreal-LaGuardia21
Montreal-Las Vegas3restarts Sept. 9
Montreal-Los Angeles7
Montreal-Orlando3
Montreal-San Francisco7
Montreal-Washington Dulles7
Montreal-Washington National14restarts Sept. 7
Toronto – USA routesFrequencies per week
Toronto-Atlanta14
Toronto-Austin5restarts Sept. 9
Toronto-Boston21
Toronto-Charlotte7restarts Sept. 7
Toronto-Chicago28
Toronto-Cincinnati7restarts Sept. 7
Toronto-Cleveland7restarts Aug. 1
Toronto-Columbus7
Toronto-Dallas14restarts Sept. 7
Toronto-Denver14
Toronto-Detroit7
Toronto-Fort Lauderdale8
Toronto-Fort Myers2restarts Aug. 1
Toronto-Houston21
Toronto-Las Vegas4restarts Aug. 1
Toronto-Los Angeles21
Toronto-LaGuardia35
Toronto-Minneapolis-Saint Paul7restarts Sept. 7
Toronto-Nashville4restarts Aug. 30
Toronto-Newark28
Toronto-Orlando5
Toronto-Philadelphia7
Toronto-Phoenix3restarts Aug. 2
Toronto-Pittsburgh7restarts Aug. 1
Toronto-Raleigh Durham14restarts Sept. 7
Toronto-Seattle4restarts Aug. 1
Toronto-San Francisco14
Toronto-Tampa5
Toronto-Washington Dulles21
Toronto-Washington National14restarts Sept. 7
Vancouver – USA routesFrequencies per week
Vancouver-Chicago7restarts Sept. 7
Vancouver-Denver14
Vancouver-Honolulu3restarts Aug. 2
Vancouver-Las Vegas4restarts Sept. 7
Vancouver-Los Angeles21
Vancouver-Maui3restarts Aug. 3
Vancouver-Newark7restarts Sept. 7
Vancouver-Portland14
Vancouver-Phoenix5
Vancouver-San Diego7restarts Aug. 1
Vancouver-San Francisco21
Vancouver-Seattle14
Calgary – USA routesFrequency per week
Calgary-Phoenix3restarts Aug. 1

Connecting between U.S. to/from international destinations through Canada

Flights are timed to provide connectivity through Air Canada’s North American and international destinations including to Brussels, Cairo, Doha, and to a multitude of other cities in Europe, Asia and beyond.

Travelling internationally?

Find the latest government entry requirements via IATA’s Timatic website.  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.

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. 

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.

Quotes

“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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Switch Health and the Greater Toronto Airports Authority launch new departures COVID-19 testing service

Built on the findings from federally funded research, the new departures testing service is the latest protective layer in Toronto Pearson’s award-winning Healthy Airport program.

TORONTO, July 14, 2021 /CNW/ – Switch Health and the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) today announced that they are bringing COVID-19 testing services to Toronto Pearson. The tests, conducted by Switch Health, are an important protective layer in Pearson’s award-winning Healthy Airport program and are available to both departing passengers and members of the community who are not travelling but need access to testing services. Arrivals testing continues to be required and conducted by Switch Health in partnership with the government of Canada for international arriving passengers.

In collaboration with the GTAA Healthy Airport program, Switch Health will sell COVID-19 testing services to all consumers at a new on-airport clinic located in Value Park Garage (VPG), open from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. Consumers and passengers can book tests in advance via Switch Health’s booking portal: switchhealth.ca/healthyairport  

Switch Health’s testing will be supported by some of the most technologically advanced tools available, including AI-enabled health monitoring solutions. This will be driven by Switch Health’s secure, proprietary patient portal, ASMO, which has successfully been used in the administration of over one million COVID-19 tests in Canada.

Gold standard RT-PCR COVID-19 tests will be available either through expedited 3-6 hour or standard 12-24 hour turnaround times and rapid antigen tests will be available with results in under 30 minutes. Pre-departure tests are currently required for entry into the United States and United Kingdom, as well as most other countries around the world.

The service first became available on July 12, 2021. Tests will be available through Switch Health in a traditional clinic setting on Level 3 of the VPG, as well as by drive-through on Level 1 of the VPG.

The testing service builds upon a research study conducted at Toronto Pearson earlier this year that was supported in part by funding from the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP). This research explored the efficacy of testing in a high-throughput, commercial environment, proving that it could be successfully operationalized at Canada’s largest airport.

“Canada must be extra vigilant to continue to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and its variants, and we are doing so with a permanent onsite testing facility at Toronto Pearson Airport to deliver rapid results,” said Dilian Stoyanov, Chief Executive Officer at Switch Health. “Whether Canadians are travelling abroad, coming home, working at the airport, or are visitors, we want everyone to be confident that they are safe and protected with advanced in-house testing that will set the standard for international transport hubs.”  

“As we work towards global pandemic recovery, it is critically important that airports provide services that enable safe, responsible travel,” said Dwayne MacIntosh, Director, Corporate Safety & Security Governance, GTAA. “We undertook a significant piece of research, funded by the Government of Canada, to show that this kind of testing could be successfully operationalized in a high-throughput airport.” 

The Healthy Airport program is globally recognized, with Toronto Pearson being the first Canadian airport accredited under the Airports Council International (ACI) Airport Health Accreditation program. The program protects passengers and airport workers by using innovative new technology, advanced cleaning measures, and best-in-class standards to create a multilayered defense that limits the spread of COVID-19.

Switch Health has been at the forefront of Canada’s fight against COVID-19, providing at-home and mobile COVID-19 testing services at airports and ports of entry across Canada.

Both Switch Health and the GTAA plan to continually adapt to meet and exceed the demands of a rapidly evolving pandemic environment, exploring new innovations to meet the needs of our passengers, employees, and the community.

About Switch Health

Switch Health Holdings Inc. (Switch Health) is an industry leader that is transforming how healthcare is delivered in Canada through cutting-edge decentralized next-generation diagnostics and patient-focused digital solutions. Switch Health developed an end-to-end, innovative, and accessible testing solution in Canada’s fight against COVID-19, with its at-home and mobile collection kit to test Canadians safely, rapidly, and reliably for COVID-19. Switch Health’s services are driven by its secure, proprietary patient portal, ASMO. Switch Health offers its gold standard of rapid and PCR testing in over 200 languages from the comfort peoples’ homes or workplaces, with the guidance of trusted healthcare professionals and the delivery of results through some of Canada’s top laboratories. 

About the Greater Toronto Airports Authority

The Greater Toronto Airports Authority is the operator of Toronto – Lester B. Pearson International Airport, Canada’s largest airport and a vital connector of people, businesses, and goods. Toronto Pearson has been named “Best Large Airport in North America serving more than 40 million passengers” for four years in a row by Airports Council International (ACI), the global trade representative of the world’s airports. In recognition of its Healthy Airport program, ACI also awarded Toronto Pearson the “Best hygiene measures in North America” award, and Toronto Pearson was the first Canadian airport to receive ACI’s global health accreditation for its response to COVID-19.

Porter Airlines expanding service across North America by acquiring up to 80 Embraer E195-E2s

TORONTO, July 12, 2021 /CNW/ – Porter Airlines is extending its award-winning service to destinations throughout North America with the introduction of up to 80 state-of-the-art, fuel-efficient Embraer E195-E2 aircraft into its fleet. The planes have transcontinental range and will enter into service with Porter starting in the second half of 2022.

Porter is Embraer’s North American launch customer for the E2. The total aircraft order is valued at up to USD $5.82 billion at current list prices, with 30 firm commitments and 50 purchase right options. The aircraft are being acquired by Porter Aircraft Leasing Corp., a sister company of Porter Airlines. This investment enhances competition, elevates passenger service levels and creates as many as 6,000 new jobs based on 80 aircraft deliveries.

Porter Airlines is extending its award-winning service to destinations throughout North America with the introduction of up to 80 state-of-the-art, fuel-efficient Embraer E195-E2 aircraft into its fleet. (CNW Group/Porter Airlines)
Porter Airlines is extending its award-winning service to destinations throughout North America with the introduction of up to 80 state-of-the-art, fuel-efficient Embraer E195-E2 aircraft into its fleet. (CNW Group/Porter Airlines)
The E195-E2’s range allows for the creation of a continental route network. Potential markets reach coast to coast in Canada and the United States, including U.S. sun destinations, plus Mexico and the Caribbean. (CNW Group/Porter Airlines)
The E195-E2’s range allows for the creation of a continental route network. Potential markets reach coast to coast in Canada and the United States, including U.S. sun destinations, plus Mexico and the Caribbean. (CNW Group/Porter Airlines)

The ability to convert purchase rights to smaller E190-E2s is included in the agreement. This provides opportunities to introduce non-stop service in markets where connecting flights are often the only option today. It also enables higher-frequency service for routes with greater demand.

Porter intends to operate the E2s to popular destinations from Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax and Toronto Pearson International Airport. The introduction of specific routes will be determined in advance of aircraft deliveries.

“We are bringing Porter’s distinct style of service to dozens of new North American cities,” said Michael Deluce, president and CEO, Porter Airlines. “We believe that now is the right time to make this investment as the pandemic resets the aviation landscape. Adding a diverse selection of popular business and leisure destinations to our network means that we are better positioned to serve the needs of many more passengers.”

While establishing service at Pearson Airport for the first time, flights from Porter’s existing hub at downtown Toronto’s Billy Bishop Airport remain core to its business and will continue with high-frequency regional service on turboprop aircraft. Service is confirmed to restart at Billy Bishop on Sept. 8, following a temporary shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic and associated travel restrictions. The airport is essential to the airline’s immediate plans for re-establishing flights and developing future routes. The E2s will not operate at this airport.

“Our commitment to Billy Bishop Airport is not changing,” said Robert Deluce, founder and executive chairman, Porter Airlines. “Our corporate headquarters at Billy Bishop is being maintained and we will continue serving the same network of regional markets from downtown Toronto. We are moving beyond this existing footprint to welcome more travellers across North America, with an emphasis on providing the sophisticated service that only Porter delivers.”

Porter set a new standard for regional flying when it took off in 2006. Its Flying Refined brand promise emphasizes bringing dignity and ease to travel, with an elevated, high-value experience. Complimentary beer and wine served in glassware, and premium snacks for all passengers are recognizable hallmarks of every flight. The airline is planning to enhance its award-winning customer experience and transform travel again in the wider North American market.

The E195-E2’s range allows for the creation of a continental route network. Potential markets reach coast to coast in Canada and the United States, including U.S. sun destinations, plus Mexico and the Caribbean. A destination map is available at www.flyporter.com, with initial routes to be announced in 2022.

The E195-E2 accommodates between 120 and 146 passengers. The interior complements Porter’s traditional service offering, with a passenger-focused design emphasizing space and comfort. Features include aisle or window seating for every passenger, with no middle seats, plus large windows and overhead bins, and cabin mood lighting. Porter is currently finalizing its preferred configuration and additional passenger experience details, such as in-flight entertainment and onboard service.

“With this order for up to 80 of our largest aircraft, the E2 is making a stunning North American debut,” said Arjan Meijer, president and CEO, Embraer Commercial Aviation. As the quietest and most fuel-efficient aircraft in the segment, the E195-E2 also delivers excellent economic performance that shines through.”

The E2 is the most environmentally-friendly single-aisle aircraft family, measured by sound and CO2 emissions. The E195-E2 is certified to the strictest international standard for aircraft noise, at 65% quieter than previous generation types. Carbon emissions are nearly 10% lower per trip, with up to 25% less CO2 emissions per seat. Combined with Porter’s existing De Havilland Dash 8-400s, the airline will have one of the world’s most environmentally sustainable commercial aircraft fleets.

Canada-based aerospace companies contribute greater than 37% of the E2’s main systems. The engines are produced by Pratt & Whitney Canada in Quebec, with revolutionary geared-turbofan technology being the most significant component of the aircraft’s incredible fuel efficiency and minimal sound profile. Additionally, Ontario-based Thales produces select avionics and Quebec-based Alta Precision the main landing gear. Porter’s purchase supports skilled jobs and ongoing innovation within this important economic sector.

“The support of our board of directors and shareholders was crucial in deciding to invest in Porter’s future,” said Don Carty, chairman of the board, Porter Airlines. “We have investors, partners, customers and team members who have been with us from day one, while others joined at different points along the way. It’s time for us to collectively build on the exceptional global reputation that we’ve built for Porter and continue our journey.”

Funds for the aircraft purchase are being raised privately from shareholders, as well as through aircraft sale-leaseback agreements.

An overview of Porter’s growth plan, including E195-E2 features, is available on its website.

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 www.flyporter.com

Flair Airlines Continues Impressive Growth With Flights to the U.S, Bringing Ultra-Low Fares to Sun Destinations

Canada’s only true ULCC announces U.S service to 6 new sun destinations, bringing Canadians the lowest fares to their favorite places

EDMONTON, Alberta, July 08, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Flair Airlines, Canada’s only true ultra low-cost carrier (ULCC), continues to change the face of the Canadian aviation market with unprecedented growth as it announces non-stop, low fare flights between 8 Canadian cities and 6 U.S destinations: Fort Lauderdale, Orlando-Sanford, Phoenix-Mesa, Hollywood-Burbank, Palm Springs and Las Vegas.

“We want Canadians to hear us loud and clear, you don’t have to rack up debt or save for months to enjoy travel this winter,” says Stephen Jones, President and CEO, Flair Airlines. “For years, Canadians have been over-paying for air travel to domestic and U.S destinations. Flair is here to ensure that Canadians are no longer taken advantage of and receive low prices for even better service. The fares to our new destinations ensure Canadians can easily enjoy travel this winter and spend some much-deserved time away exploring sunny new places.”

Halifax, Montreal, Kitchener-Waterloo, Toronto, Vancouver, Calgary, Ottawa and Abbotsford will receive service to a variety of the U.S cities starting this October. The ultra-low fares will start between $79 to $109 CAD one-way. All routes and schedule details can be viewed at https://www.flyflair.com.

The new service to the six U.S cities are among several new destinations Flair is adding to its network as the airline rapidly grows to serve 26 destinations in Canada and the U.S. With an ambitious goal to grow to 50 aircraft in 5 years, Flair is rapidly expanding as it disrupts the market and brings affordable air travel to Canadians.

Comments from our airport partners

Vancouver International Airport (YVR)

“We are pleased to see Flair adding new routes out of YVR to exciting vacation destinations such as Burbank (California), Palm Springs (PSP), Mesa (Arizona) and Las Vegas (Nevada). As we see restrictions ease and passenger traffic increase these new routes will allow for more travel options once we are able to explore freely again. We commend Canada’s airlines for continuing to serve Canadians through the last year and a half and we are excited to see Flair expand their offer to provide unique travel experiences. YVR is ready to welcome all passengers back to the airport and will ensure the passenger journey through the airport is an effortless and safe one,” said Russell Atkinson, Director, Air Service Development – Strategy

Calgary Airport Authority (YYC)

“Congratulations to Flair on their new routes. We’re excited for our guests to get back up in the air again flying to the warm destinations of Phoenix, Burbank and Las Vegas,” said Rob Palmer, Vice-President, Commercial, Strategy, and Chief Financial Officer, The Calgary Airport Authority. “We’re ready to welcome guests back safely and we look forward to the added sunny winter options for Calgarians.”

Montréal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL)

“We are pleased to see that Flair has decided to increase its presence in Canada by enhancing its air service from YUL Montréal-Trudeau International Airport. Starting this fall, passengers will be able to benefit from a wide-range of options to popular sun destinations. This is good news for travellers – who we look forward to welcoming back to YUL – and it is another step in the recover of our industry and aviation activities,” said Stéphane Lapierre Vice President, Airport Operations and Air Services Development, ADM Aéroports de Montreal.

Region of Waterloo International Airport (YKF)

“The increase in destinations will be an asset for the community,” commented Regional Chair Karen Redman. “We are pleased with Flair Airlines’ commitment to providing affordable travel and connectivity across Canada, as well as the opportunities this provides for an economic recovery in terms of business and tourism in the Region of Waterloo.”

Ottawa International Airport Authority (YOW)

“Flair’s YOW service expansion is a testament to their early success at our airport. As Canada’s Capital Region continues to rebuild from the devastating effects of COVID-19, not only are the residents of Ottawa-Gatineau ready to travel, we know that our destination is safe and attractive for visitors as well,” said Mark Laroche, President & CEO, Ottawa International Airport Authority.

Abbotsford International Airport (YXX)

“A new Flair Airlines route from Abbotsford International Airport to McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas will help serve our growing community and our region,” said Mayor of Abbotsford Henry Braun. “We know that as COVID-19 restrictions lift, the Abbotsford International Airport and its service providers will continue to be an economic driver for our community and the region, offering convenient and low cost flight options.”

Halifax International Airport Authority (YHZ)

“We are pleased with Flair’s plan to expand its upcoming winter season services with a new route between Halifax Stanfield and Orlando Sanford, Florida,” said Joyce Carter, President & CEO, Halifax International Airport Authority. “As more of our community members are making travel plans, we’re excited by this new connection to the Sunshine State and look forward to offering direct U.S. and International air services again when the federal government restrictions on international flights to Canada are lifted.”

McCarran International Airport – Las Vegas (LAS)

“These new routes from Flair Airlines will significantly increase the opportunity for Canadians to experience Las Vegas,” said Chris Jones, McCarran International Airport Chief Marketing Officer. “Historically, Las Vegas has been a top destination for travelers from across Canada and we look forward to welcoming even more visitors to this world-class destination.”

Orlando Sanford International Airport (SFB)

“We are excited that the recent completion of our new terminal modernization and expansion has accelerated our air service recruitment initiatives. We thank Flair Airlines for choosing SFB,” said Tom Green, Sanford Airport Authority Board Chairman.

“SFB Airport a safe, efficient, and cost effective alternative to MCO. Flair Air recognized these benefits and we appreciate their decision. We believe Canada will be a strong market through SFB Airport. These flights to several cities will make it attractive to Canadian visitors and the local residents wanting to experience all the great things Canada has to offer,” said Tom Nolan, A.A.E, President & CEO.

Palm Springs International Airport (PSP)

“Canadians have long appreciated our year-round sunshine, world-class special events and relaxed desert lifestyle,” said Mayor Christy Holstege. “We thank Flair Airlines for adding Palm Springs International Airport to their network and we look forward to a long relationship.”

About Flair Airlines

Flair Airlines is Canada’s only independent Ultra Low-Cost Carrier (ULCC) and is on a mission to liberate the lives of Canadians by providing affordable air travel that connects them to the people and experiences they love. With an expanding fleet of Boeing 737 aircraft, Flair is growing to serve 26 cities across Canada and the U.S. For more information, please visit http://www.flyflair.com

Flair Airlines US Destinations
October 31, 2021 – March 26, 2022

Fort Lauderdale (FLL)

  • Toronto (YYZ)
  • Kitchener-Waterloo (YKF)
  • Ottawa (YOW)
  • Montreal (YUL)

Orlando-Sanford (SFB)

  • Toronto (YYZ)
  • Kitchener-Waterloo (YKF)
  • Ottawa (YOW)
  • Montreal (YUL)
  • Halifax (YHZ)

Las Vegas (LAS)

  • Toronto (YYZ)
  • Ottawa (YOW)
  • Vancouver (YVR)
  • Abbotsford (YXX)
  • Calgary (YYC)

Phoenix-Mesa (AZA)

  • Toronto (YYZ)
  • Vancouver (YVR)
  • Calgary (YYC)

Hollywood Burbank (BUR)

  • Toronto (YYZ)
  • Vancouver (YVR)
  • Calgary (YYC)

Palm Springs (PSP)

  • Vancouver (YVR)

WestJet launches new routes to multiple Vancouver Island airports

From CHEK News – link to source story – thanks to CW

July 1, 2021 NICHOLAS PESCOD/CHEK NEWS

NICHOLAS PESCOD/CHEK NEWS

WestJet recently launched four new non-stop flights from three Vancouver Island airports and restored previously cancelled service on six other Island routes.

As travel restrictions continue to loosen across the province, the nation’s second-largest airline has launched four new routes to airports across Vancouver Island.

WestJet recently launched four new non-stop flights from three Vancouver Island airports and restored previously cancelled service on six other Island routes.

The new direct routes are Comox–Toronto, Victoria–Ottawa, Victoria–Saskatoon, and Victoria–Winnipeg.

WestJet has also restored service on its Comox–Edmonton, Comox–Vancouver, Nanaimo–Vancouver, Victoria–Toronto, and Victoria–Kelowna routes, which they had cancelled due to the pandemic.

The airline also brought back long-desired direct flights between Nanaimo and Edmonton, following a five-year hiatus.

All of the routes are now in operation, with Victoria–Toronto flights resuming June 30.

“We have been talking to a lot of people and we are listening to what investments Vancouver Island wants and needs and all of these routes have been planned in advance,” Morgan Bell, media spokesperson for WestJet, told CHEK News. “It’s exciting that they are now going to fully take flight.”

With British Columbia reopening and the demand for domestic travel slowly increasing, Bell says it’s only natural for the company to not only restore cancelled routes but launch new ones.

“Canadians are going to travel domestically this summer and inbound tourism to Vancouver Island is important,” Bell explained. “While I know everybody loves to stay on Vancouver Island, there are also people from Vancouver Island that want to get back out and connect with friends and family across the country and other places.”

Comox gets direct flights to Toronto, Edmonton flights return to Nanaimo

Perhaps the most eye-catching of the new routes is the non-stop service between Comox and Toronto, which operates on a weekly basis — at least for now.

“The hope is that as more and more people begin flying again and these flights get full, we’ll add more service,” said Bell.

The new route launched June 26 — just as Air Canada restarted non-stop service between Canada’s most populated city and nearby Nanaimo — and brings the total number of airports on Vancouver Island with direct Toronto flights to three.

“It’s going to be great to see a major city like Toronto connect directly into Comox,” said Bell.

Another notable route is Nanaimo to Edmonton, which began operations on June 25 and runs twice a week. Although it was listed as a new route in the company’s press release, WestJet briefly operated non-stop flights between the two cities in early 2016 but cancelled them after only three months due to the economic downturn in Alberta.

Bell says WestJet is thrilled to restart service after more than five years, explaining that there has been no shortage of demand for service between the two regions.

“There’s so much interest in northern Alberta that’s coming through the Edmonton airport from Nanaimo, and also guests from Vancouver Island going into Edmonton,” she said. “There are pretty strong connections between the two cities, so it’s great to see that route come back.”

While the restoration of old routes and the addition of new routes, may seem like a lot, Bell says WestJet is still operating well below pre-pandemic levels.

“We’re still at 60 per cent reduction in terms of capacity from what would have been 2019. In July 2019, we were operating about 600 flights a day, and this July, we’re only looking at about 300,” she said. “We still have a really long way to go.”

Airport, flying experience will be different amid the pandemic

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With an increasing number of people becoming comfortable with the idea of getting on a plane after more than a year on the ground, Bell says those who are planning on taking to the skies should be prepared for some changes.

“It’s definitely very different. I took my first flight today in six months, and it felt very different,” she said.

That’s because airports have implemented new rules and safety measures throughout the pandemic such as mandatory mask-wearing, dedicated entrance and exit flow, and increased cleaning throughout terminals. Victoria International Airport, for example, is limiting access to its terminal building to just passengers with tickets, though there are some exceptions.

“While we’re restoring all this and people are excited to get on the move again, we also understand that it’s going to be a new experience for them,” said Bell. “I mean, people haven’t been in an airport for potentially 18 months.”

“I think it’s going to be a good experience, but it’s also going to be something that people need to prepare for and be ready for.”

As a result, Bell suggests people read all the rules and travel requirements well before their flight and arrive at the airport even earlier than the recommended 90 minutes prior to departure.

“We’re still in the pandemic, there are new rules, and there are different screening points and security points to get through,” she said. “So, I would just always say give yourself extra time and just be willing and flexible to adapt to any changes that come your way.”

Air Canada Continues to Rebuild its Global Network with Service Resuming to Key Destinations Around The World

  • Resumption of year-round service between Calgary and Frankfurt
  • Unique non-stop service between Montreal and Cairo, Egypt
  • Book with confidence with Air Canada’s new travel policy

MONTREAL, July 6, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada today unveiled additional details of its planned international schedule for this summer, which includes the resumption of 17 routes and 11 destinations across the world from its hubs. The airline is resuming its service between Calgary and Frankfurt, as of August 1, up to four times weekly, and is also offering for the first time a unique non-stop service from Montreal to Cairo, Egypt, three times weekly.

“As travel restrictions ease across the globe, we are committed to rebuild our international network and continue as a global carrier to connect Canada to the world, while also developing additional markets and targeting new opportunities. Canadians are eager to travel again, and we are ready to reunite customers with their families and friends. With vaccination rates globally increasing and our industry-leading CleanCare+ bio-safety protocols, Air Canada has your health and safety as its top priority,” said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada.

“We are pleased to restart our non-stop service between Calgary and Frankfurt, a key European market for our customers in Western Canada. This route will operate all year long, connecting Calgary to the world via the global hub of our trans Atlantic joint venture partner, Lufthansa, in Frankfurt. We are also considering additional routes as restrictions continue to loosen,” Mr. Galardo added.

International flight schedule for Summer 2021

RouteFrequencyStart Date
Calgary-FrankfurtUp to 4x weeklyAugust 1, 2021
Toronto-Vienna3x weeklyJuly 21, 2021
Toronto-Dublin3x weeklyAugust 1, 2021
Toronto-ParisUp to 5x weeklyAugust 2, 2021
Toronto-Zurich4x weeklyAugust 3, 2021
Montreal-Geneva3x weeklyJuly 22, 2021
Montreal-Tel Aviv2x weeklyAugust 1, 2021
Montreal-LondonUp to 4x weeklyAugust 3, 2021

On top of these upcoming service resumptions, Air Canada has already resumed flights to Greece, United Arab Emirates (UAE), Italy, Spain, United Kingdom and Morocco and will increase frequencies in some of these destinations as of August.

Resumed routes

RouteFrequency
Toronto-AthensUp to 5x weekly in August
Toronto-Dubai3x weekly
Toronto-RomeUp to 4x weekly         
Toronto-LisbonUp to 3x weekly
Montreal-AthensUp to 5x weekly in August
Montreal-CasablancaUp to 5x weekly in August
Montreal-RomeUp to 3x weekly
Montreal-Lisbon2x weekly
Vancouver-LondonUp to daily in August

Air Canada also recently launched its first and unique non-stop service to Cairo from its Montreal hub, three times weekly, serving the large Egyptian community established in Montreal and throughout North America. This new route provides a direct gateway to Africa and offers convenient connectivity throughout Canada and the U.S. from across Air Canada’s network.

The airline continues to operate to several other destinations including: Brussels, Bogotá, Doha, Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai and Tokyo. Click here for the full schedule.

Note that Air Canada’s commercial schedule may be adjusted as required based on the COVID-19 trajectory and government restrictions. Passengers 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. For the most current information, please visit our Information Hub.

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.

Customers can also collect and redeem Aeroplan points through Canada’s leading loyalty program when travelling with Air Canada, and eligible customers have access to priority check-in, Maple Leaf Lounges, priority boarding and other benefits, where available.

About Air Canada

Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline, and in 2020 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. 

Air Canada Cargo – New Flights to Fort Lauderdale, Europe and Added Capacity For July!

This month, Air Canada Cargo has service to several new destinations as well additional flights on multiple routes for all your shipping needs.

NEW IN JULY

We are pleased to announce added capacity to Europe and the US with new direct, widebody service to Fort Lauderdale and the return of service to Rome, Lisbon, Vienna and Geneva.

Fort Lauderdale – Four flights per week to and from Montreal and Toronto, starting July 16.

Rome – Two flights per week to and from Toronto, with a weekly flight to and from Montreal, starting July 2 and 3.

Lisbon – Two flights per week to and from Toronto, with a weekly flight to and from Montreal, starting July 2 and 3.

Vienna– Starting July 21 with three flights per week to and from Toronto.

Geneva – Starting July 22 with three flights per week to and from Montreal.

ADDED CAPACITY AND HIGHLIGHTS

In addition to new flights, Air Canada Cargo has additional direct, widebody flights on several routes starting soon.

Los Angeles – Added capacity between LAX and Toronto with daily widebody flights.

Mexico– Added capacity as of July 1, offering six flights per week between Toronto and Mexico City.

Athens– Now offering three flights per week to and from Toronto and two flights per week to and from Montreal.

Zurich– Added capacity with four flights per week from Toronto, three return flights to Toronto and one to Montreal.

Tel Aviv-Yafo – Added capacity as of July 20, offering five flights per week to and from Toronto.

Hong Kong – Added capacity as of July 22, offering three flights per week to and from Toronto.

Montego Bay – Ongoing weekly service to and from Toronto.

Quito– Ongoing service from Montreal and Toronto through Lima.

Tokyo (Narita) – Daily flights to and from Toronto with three weekly flights to and from Vancouver.

Dublin– Ongoing weekly service to and from Toronto.

In Case You Missed It:

New Service To Cairo Starts June 17
First Routes Include South America, Mexico and Europe

Visit our website for an updated overview of our schedule or for more information on any of the flights listed above.

Air Canada Cargo marks milestone with 10,000th cargo-only flight since onset of the pandemic

5 July 2021

When worldwide travel was dramatically impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic in March of 2020, it had severe consequences on the movement of goods around the world by air as passenger flights, which carried up to 59% of air cargo globally, disappeared almost overnight.

The Air Canada and Air Canada Cargo teams understood that transporting critical medical and other vital supplies was imperative to combating the COVID-19 crisis, in Canada and globally. As passenger flights were suspended, Air Canada Cargo immediately began operating cargo-only flights in the belly of unscheduled passenger aircraft to meet the urgent demand for cargo transport. Simultaneously, work was being done to reconfigure the passenger cabins of some aircraft and implement a cargo-only flight schedule to keep the economy and the supply chain moving.

July 5, 2021, marks the 10,000th cargo-only flight for Air Canada Cargo, AC7251 from Toronto to Buenos Aires. Those 10,000 flights, including regularly scheduled operations and special on-demand flight, have carried everything from PPE for our healthcare heroes, critical vaccines, food, mail and even pets back home to their loved ones in Australia.

“It is remarkable that Air Canada is marking its 10,000th cargo-only flights since March 2020, a major accomplishment under the difficult circumstances. The pandemic changed our business at unprecedented speed, and the collaboration and creativity across branches and teams has been a defining moment for the Cargo group, and all of Air Canada,” said Jason Berry, Vice President, Cargo at Air Canada. “The cargo-only flights, which include both scheduled and on-demand flights, have helped provide stability in the global supply chain at a time when distributing essential and vital supplies was critical.”

Air Canada Cargo has been able to achieve this milestone thanks to the hard work of hundreds of dedicated employees across all branches of the company, its supply chain partners and the support of its customers, who came together to find solutions.

“10,000 cargo-only flights is just the beginning and our future is bright. Montreal cargo really worked hard this past year and we are all very proud of that,” said Mamun Ansari, Cargo Service Manager in Montreal.

“Our 10,000th cargo-only flight means we have been resilient during these challenging times. We have been able to adapt, be part of the necessary supply chain moving things such as vaccines,” said Tanith Pinto, Cargo Service Manager in Toronto.

“It is a moment to be proud of and specifically at Air Canada Cargo to see how we have evolved during the course of the pandemic,” said Thomas Getzie, Cargo Service Manager in Vancouver.

“It is just great for the Frankfurt team to know that we have been an important part of the success story. I believe the entire cargo team can really be very proud,” said Leandro De Souza, Area Sales Manager – Cargo – Germany.

“Launching these cargo-only flights during a global pandemic remains, for all of us who were involved, a career highlight. I know I speak for all my colleagues on the Asia-Pacific team when I are proud to represent Air Canada,” said Brayden Zhou, Cargo Manager.

Air Canada set up its network of cargo-only flights using Boeing 787 Dreamliners, Boeing 777 and Airbus A330-300 aircraft on international routes.

Air Canada was also the first airline in the world to go to market with reconfigured widebody passenger aircraft, having removed the seats in the cabin to allow for light freight. Air Canada has converted a total of 11 aircraft, a mix of Boeing 777s and A330-300s.

The evolution at Air Canada Cargo will continue this fall with the arrival of the first of several dedicated freighter aircraft, giving its global customers reliable and predictable capacity.

“As passenger flights pick up, we look forward to continuing to serve our cargo customers and facilitating the movement of goods by air through belly capacity and continued cargo-only flying as we prepare for the arrival of our first Boeing 767-300ER freighters in the fall,” Jason Berry concluded.