Category: WestJet Airlines

WestJet loses appeal of B.C. court decision on harassment lawsuit

News provided by Tri City News/The Canadian Press

The Canadian Press FEBRUARY 21, 2019 11:34 AM

VANCOUVER — WestJet has lost an appeal of a court decision that refused to throw out a proposed class-action lawsuit accusing the airline of fostering a culture that tolerates harassment of female employees.

Former WestJet flight attendant Mandalena Lewis stands for a photograph in Vancouver, B.C., on Tuesday March 8, 2016. DARRYL DYCK / THE CANADIAN PRESS

Former flight attendant Mandalena Lewis is suing over alleged gender-based discrimination, accusing her former employer of breaking its promise to provide a harassment-free workplace for women.

A British Columbia Supreme Court judge dismissed WestJet’s application to strike the legal action in 2017, rejecting the company’s argument that the dispute belongs before a human rights tribunal and workers’ compensation board.

The airline took its argument to the B.C. Court of Appeal and a three-judge panel ruled against it on Thursday, saying in a written decision that nothing in the relevant statutes removes the jurisdiction of the courts in this case.

None of the allegations have been proven in court and neither WestJet nor Lewis immediately responded to requests for comment on the decision.

The lawsuit proposes to represent all of WestJet’s past and current female flight attendants whose employment included a so-called anti-harassment promise, but the case has yet to be approved as a class-action.

Advertisements

WestJet Dreamliner launches first revenue flight

Provided by WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership/CNW

CALGARY, Feb. 20, 2019 /CNW/ – WestJet’s Dreamliner made its official debut when it pushed back on its first revenue flight today from Toronto Pearson International Airport. The aircraft, heading for Calgary, was carrying WestJet guests for the first time.

“Today’s first revenue flight on the Dreamliner has been years in the making,” said Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. “There are big things in store for tail 901 as it is the first 787 that will take WestJet global.”

WestJet Dreamliner launches first revenue flight (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
WestJet Dreamliner launches first revenue flight (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
WestJet Dreamliner launches first revenue flight (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
WestJet Dreamliner launches first revenue flight (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)

The aircraft will operate on domestic flights for crew training and regulatory compliance before the first scheduled international flight between Calgary and London (Gatwick) on April 28.

Continued von zur Muehlen, “Canadians can expect an elevated premium product paired with the remarkable guest experience which has made us Canada’s favourite airline according to TripAdvisor.”

WestJet took delivery of its first of 10 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners in January 2019 and the second Dreamliner arrived on February 19, 2019. The airline will receive the third aircraft in March. Hub locations and routes for the remaining seven aircraft have not yet been announced.

WestJet also has options for an additional 10 aircraft to arrive between 2020 and 2024.

WestJet to implement recently increased foreign ownership levels

Provided by WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership/CNW

CALGARY, Feb. 15, 2019 /CNW/ – WestJet (TSX: WJA) today announced that it will seek shareholder approval at its 2019 annual and special meeting of shareholders to amend its articles of incorporation and By-Law No. 2005-1 to increase the limits on foreign ownership and control of its voting shares to those permitted by amendments made to the Canada Transportation Act (CTA) in 2018. The amendments to its articles and By-Law No. 2005-1 will be undertaken by way of a court supervised and shareholder approved statutory plan of arrangement. 

Prior to the CTA amendments, no more than 25% of the voting interests of a Canadian air carrier could be owned or controlled by non-Canadians. The Government of Canada’s stated purpose in implementing the CTA amendments is to attract more foreign investment and encourage growth in the aviation sector by increasing, from 25% to 49%, the permitted level of foreign ownership of Canadian air carriers. At the same time, the CTA amendments introduced two new limitations on voting ownership and control, by capping the voting rights of single non-Canadians and of the aggregate of non-Canadian air carriers at 25%.

Completion of the plan of arrangement is subject to shareholder approval and approval of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta. Full details regarding the plan of arrangement will be included in the management proxy circular which will be made available to WestJet shareholders in connection with the shareholder meeting. 

Air Canada, WestJet update travel alerts as latest winter storm hits with full force

News provided by TravelWeek.ca

Air Canada, WestJet update travel alerts as latest winter storm hits with full...

Tuesday, February 12, 2019 Posted by Travelweek Group

TORONTO — Air Canada and several other airlines have updated their travel alerts for upwards of 20 gateways in Canada and the U.S., as a massive winter storm sweeps through Ontario, Quebec and onwards to the east, disrupting flights and causing travel snarls.

The weather may be frightful but the wind and snow are also keeping the phones ringing off the hook at travel agencies and tour operators, making for one of the best winter seasons in the travel industry in years.

Air Canada already had more than a dozen cities with travel alerts posted yesterday and has since added to that list. Passengers on impacted flights won’t incur flight change fees if they need to alter their travel plans.

Air Canada has issued travel alerts for some 20 gateways impacted by the storm, including: Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Victoria, Vancouver, Toronto (YTZ and YYZ), Sydney, Sept-Iles, Saint John, NB, Quebec City, Ottawa, New York (EWR and LGA), Montreal, Moncton, Hartford, Gaspe, Fredericton, Charlottetown, Boston and Bathurst, NB.

The Air Canada alerts apply for flights both today and tomorrow (Feb. 12 and Feb. 13).

WestJet is also allowing flight changes without fees, for the following cities and regions, all due to winter storm systems: Comox, Abbotsford, Nanaimo, Vancouver and Victoria (through Feb. 12); New York region (Feb. 12); Southern Ontario (Feb. 12); Fredericton, Halifax, Moncton, Sydney and Charlottetown (Feb. 13); Ottawa, Quebec City and Montreal (Feb. 12 – 13) and Gander and St. John’s (Feb. 14).

Porter Airlines also has several cities on its Travel Alerts page for Feb. 12, including Boston, Montreal, New York (EWR), Ottawa, Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury and Toronto.

Currently on Toronto Pearson Airport’s departures web page there are more red ‘Cancelled’ notifications than green ‘Departed’ notifications for flights within Ontario and to gateways in Quebec and the Maritimes, however most sun destination flights and flights heading west to cities like Vancouver are mostly departing just fine.

This latest winter storm in what’s already been a proper snowy and cold winter across much of Canada, is a ‘Colorado low’ moving northeast from the U.S. The storm has been pelting Ontario with snow, ice and high winds on Tuesday, with Canada’s weather agency warning residents to brace for worsening weather before the system moved east into Quebec.

Environment Canada issued widespread winter storm warnings across Ontario, with everything from freezing rain in the southwestern part of the province to as much as 40 centimetres of snow near the Ottawa region expected today.

Schools and post-secondary institutions across the province called off classes. The closures in Ontario may be a sign of things to come for the rest of the country, said Environment Canada meteorologist Gerald Cheng, adding the system promises to make itself felt in Quebec and all points east in the coming days.

“It’s not just affecting parts of Ontario, it’s also affecting Quebec and eventually all the Atlantic provinces,” he said. “Basically, a lot of people in eastern Canada will be affected by this storm.”

Cheng said moisture the storm system will have gathered on its way north will result in freezing rain falling on a large stretch of southwestern Ontario from Windsor to London. As it moves north, however, Cheng said the precipitation will shift to a combination of snow and ice pellets.

That mix is expected to fall on the Greater Toronto Area and surrounding regions, he said, bringing between 15 and 25 centimetres of combined precipitation.

Snowfall totals are expected to rise as the storm travels east, he said, adding the Ottawa area can brace for as much as 40 centimetres.

The storm is expected to hit Quebec overnight and into Wednesday morning, he added.

“This is a big storm, and not only are we talking about the precipitation … winds can gust up to 80 kilometres per hour,” he said.


With files from The Canadian Press

WestJet reports January load factor of 80.5 per cent

Provided by WESTJET, an Alberta partnership

CALGARY, Feb. 8, 2019 /CNW/ – Today WestJet announced January 2019 traffic results with a load factor of 80.5 per cent, a decrease of 2.1 percentage points year over year. Revenue passenger miles (RPMs), or traffic, increased 2.7 per cent year over year, while capacity, measured in available seat miles (ASMs), grew 5.4 per cent over the same period. WestJet welcomed an additional 28,000 guests in January, a year over year increase of 1.4 per cent.

January 2019 traffic results

January 2019January 2018Change
Load factor80.5%82.6%(2.1 pts)
ASMs (billions)2.8832.7345.4%
RPMs (billions)2.3202.2592.7%

Note: All statistics are at a consolidated WestJet group level

In January, WestJet welcomed the arrival of its first Boeing 787 Dreamliner, ushering in a new global era. WestJet’s Dreamliners feature the airline’s first lie-flat business cabin seats accompanied by luxurious blankets and pillows, turndown service and in-seat TVs, offering a premium service with a distinctly Canadian feel. The first Dreamliner will fly guests domestically on Toronto/Calgary routes starting February 20 before the first international service from Calgary to London (Gatwick) on April 28. WestJet also recently announced new non-stop service to Austin, Texas and Portland, Oregon from Calgary this spring.

These key markets will help to diversify Alberta’s economy, open new trade links and forge stronger connections between Alberta and major global destinations.

WestJet warning public of ongoing phone scam

Provided by Westjet, an Alberta Partnership

Airline does not use telemarketers

CALGARY, Jan. 31, 2019 /CNW/ – In the effort to raise awareness, WestJet today is warning the public of an ongoing phone scam where fraudsters are posing as WestJet representatives.  

“It’s important the public is aware that these calls are not coming from WestJet or a representative of WestJet,” said Richard Bartrem, WestJet’s Vice-President Marketing Communications. “Many of us here have been on the receiving end of these calls and understand the irritation they are causing. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience to the public and encourage Canadians to report their concerns to the correct authorities in the effort to locate the source of the issue.”

WestJet does not engage in telephone marketing and reminds the public to avoid sharing their credit card numbers and other private information with fraudsters posing as WestJet.

WestJet has more information posted on its advisories page under ‘scams’ available online: https://www.westjet.com/en-ca/travel-info/advisories

Additionally, the public can contact the RCMP Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501 or visit their website http://www.antifraudcentre.ca/ for more information and to report details.

Judge orders U.K. man who was unruly on flight to pay WestJet for fuel costs

News provided by CityNews1130.com/The Canadian Press

Posted Jan 29, 2019


The tail of a WestJet plane is seen dwarfing the Calgary skyline before the airline’s annual meeting in Calgary on May 3, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

CALGARY — A United Kingdom man who was removed from a WestJet flight after becoming disruptive has been ordered to reimburse the airline for the fuel used to bring him back to Calgary.

On Jan. 4, David Stephen Young was on a flight from Calgary to London when he was refused access to the aircraft washroom while the seatbelt light was activated.

He forced his way into the washroom and after returning to his seat became aggressive towards other passengers and the flight attendants.

The aircraft then returned to the Calgary International Airport where Young was arrested and charged with offences including causing a disturbance, criminal harassment and assaulting a peace officer.

Media reports say last week he pleaded guilty to Criminal Code and Aeronautics Act charges.

The aircraft had to dump fuel before it landed.

Young was ordered to pay $21,260.68 to cover fuel costs and sentenced to one day in prison for each of his offences.

His attorney says his client is a recovering alcoholic who had several drinks before boarding the aircraft. (CTV Calgary, The Canadian Press)

The Canadian Press

WestJet modifying Q400s to prevent depressurisations

News provided by FlightGlobal.com

28 January 2019 by Jon Hemmerdinger, Boston FlightGlobal.com

WestJet is making modifications to its Bombardier Q400 turboprop fleet to prevent an issue that has caused at least three recent in-flight Q400 depressurisations.

One of those incidents involved a WestJet Encore aircraft and two involved Porter Airlines‘ Q400s, and all three apparently stemmed from cargo door handles not being properly stowed.

“Bombardier has released a recommended modification to fix the issue,” WestJet tells FlightGlobal. “WestJet Encore is completing this modification to the fleet and to-date more than half of our fleet has been modified.”

WestJet‘s regional unit Encore operates 47 Q400s, according to Flight Fleets Analyzer.

“Although this was human error, it is a known issue on the Bombardier Q400,” WestJet adds. “Transport Canada has determined that there is no risk to safety and the decision to complete the modification is at each company’s discretion.”

WestJet declines to provide more details about Bombardier’s recommendations, such as when Bombardier issued them.

The Montreal airframer did not immediately respond to questions about the recommendations, but says three recent depressurisations involved cargo door “handles that were not stowed properly and popped open.”

“The door seal would deflate as if someone was opening the cargo door, as the system was designed,” Bombardier says. “No problems were noted with the door handle in any of these three cases.”

Transport Canada is “evaluating the situation. The department will not hesitate to take action should a safety concern be identified”, the regulator says.

The most recent in a string of similar events happened on 17 January and involved an Encore Q400 that had not yet undergone WestJet‘s modifications, the airline says.

“Flight 3265 from Calgary to Kelowna did experience a loss of pressure due to [an] incorrectly stowed door handle,” WestJet says.

During cruise, pilots of that Q400 (registration C-FWEP) received a “fuselage door warning light”, says the Transportation Safety Board of Canada’s daily aviation incident report. “Subsequently, a loud bang was heard and pressurisation was lost during the descent.”

After declaring an emergency and landing safely, maintenance personnel “found the lateral door handle in the extended position,” the TSB says. “The door handle had not been secured properly.”

That event followed two similar 2018 incidents involving PorterQ400s. In August last year a Porter Q400 depressurised at 4,000ft, and in October 2018 a Porter Q400 depressurised at 12,000ft, the TSB has reported.

“This situation occurs periodically, always during the climb stage of flight in our experience,” Porter told FlightGlobal last year. “It is considered to be primarily an operational and passenger inconvenience, but not a significant safety issue.”

“Our maintenance team will replace door handles, if deemed necessary, and door operation procedures for ground staff are consistently emphasised,” the airline added.

Bombardier adds that the “Q400 aircraft has been designed to be robust and reliable in consideration of the high-cycle demands of regional airlines, and was designed to comply or exceed all airworthiness certification requirements”.

WestJet adds three weekly flights between St. John’s and Edmonton

Provided by WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership/CNW

New service announced alongside WestJet’s summer 2019 schedule

CALGARY, Jan. 28, 2019 /CNW/ – WestJet today announced new non-stop service between Edmonton and St. John’s as a highlight to its 2019 summer schedule.

The three-times weekly service will commence on June 25, with flights timed for convenient connectivity.

Street with colorful houses in St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
Street with colorful houses in St. John’s, Newfoundland, Canada (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
Glass pyramids in Edmonton Alberta. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
Glass pyramids in Edmonton Alberta. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)

“We continue to make investments to ensure the best connectivity for our guests across our network and we remain committed to growing aviation in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador,” said Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. Edmonton is an important destination for the east coast and these flights demonstrate our commitment to connecting more guests across our network.”

“There are strong family and business ties between Alberta and Newfoundland, so this will be a popular route,” said Tom Ruth, Edmonton International Airport President and CEO. “WestJet continues to invest in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region and grow its wide range of travel options at EIA.”

“Edmonton is the largest, unserved airline route from our airport,” said Marie Manning, Director of Marketing & Business Development with St. John’s International Airport. “This new investment by WestJet is in addition to their direct service to Calgary during our peak summer season and provides a fast and convenient service for passengers travelling to and from Alberta.”

RouteFrequencyDepartingArrivingEffective
Edmonton – St. John’sThree 
Weekly
9:15 p.m6:09 a.m. (+1)June 25, 2019
St. John’s – EdmontonThree 
Weekly
9 a.m11:40 a.mJune 26, 2019

As part of WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule, the airline also added Portland, Ore., and Austin, Texas to WestJet’s network from Calgary. The new non-stop daily service between Calgary International Airport (YYC) and Portland International Airport (PDX), along with twice-weekly service to Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) will begin April 29 and May 2 respectively.

The new routes are part of WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule, which includes previously announced non-stop flights to London (Gatwick), Paris and Dublin from Calgary on its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners along with new non-stop service from Calgary to Atlanta, Ga.

Other highlights of WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule include:

  • Calgary-Houston, from 12 weekly flights to 13 weekly flights.
  • Calgary-London (Gatwick), adding two weekly flights for daily service.
  • Calgary-Orlando, from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Calgary-Phoenix, will double service from once daily to twice daily.
  • Calgary-Puerto Vallarta, from three times weekly to four times weekly.
  • Calgary-San Diego, from three times weekly to four times weekly.
  • Calgary-San Francisco, will double service from once daily to twice daily.
  • Calgary-Kitchener, from seven weekly flights to eight weekly flights.
  • Toronto-Nashville, from seven weekly flights to 10 weekly flights.
  • Toronto-Grand Cayman, will double service from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Toronto-Kingston, from three weekly flights to four times weekly.
  • Toronto-Liberia, will double service from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Toronto-Montego Bay, from 11 weekly flights to 12 weekly flights.
  • Toronto-Nassau from six to seven times weekly.
  • Toronto-Saint Maarten, will double service from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Toronto-Halifax, adding five weekly flights for seven-times daily service Monday to Friday.
  • Toronto-Charlottetown, adding two weekly flights.
  • Halifax-Winnipeg, from four weekly flights to five times weekly.
  • Toronto-London, from two times daily to three times daily.
  • Extension of existing once weekly winter seasonal service between Vancouver and Orlando.

This summer, WestJet will operate over 750 daily flights in peak summer to 92 destinations including 42 in Canada, 23 in the United States, 27 in Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America, and five in Europe.

For more information on new routes and increased frequencies in WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule, please visit westjet.com/flight-schedules-new

WestJet puts Portland and Austin on Alberta’s map

Provided by WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership/CNW

Airline expands travel options between the U.S. and Western Canada

CALGARY, Jan. 28, 2019 /CNW/ – Building on WestJet’s position as Calgary’s largest air carrier, the airline is introducing two new seasonal U.S. destinations this summer from YYC.

Daily non-stop service to Portland, Ore., begins April 29, while twice-weekly service to Austin, Texas begins on May 2.

Aerial view of Capitol building in Austin the Capital of Texas. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
Aerial view of Capitol building in Austin the Capital of Texas. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
An unrecognizable man commuting across the St John's Bridge in an urban city environment. He travels on his street bicycle into the city over the Saint John's Bridge. No face visible. Horizontal with copy space. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
Aerial view of Capitol building in Austin the Capital of Texas. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)

“We’re thrilled to welcome the cities of Portland and Austin to the WestJet network,” said Arved von zur Muehlen, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. “Including Atlanta, which starts on March 3, these three key markets help diversify Alberta’s economy, open new trade links and forge stronger connections between Alberta and these major destinations. We look forward to connecting friends, families and economies across the country and world this summer.”

The new routes are part of WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule, which includes previously announced non-stop flights to London (Gatwick), Paris and Dublin from Calgary on its Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners along with new non-stop service from Calgary to Atlanta, Ga.

“A love of the great outdoors is shared by Calgary and Central Texans,” said Jim Smith, Executive Director, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. “We look forward to those in Calgary enjoying Austin style fun and we thank WestJet for connecting us to fun in a cooler climate.”

“We’re pleased to welcome WestJet to the PDX family,” said David Zielke, Director of Air Service Development, PortlandInternational Airport. “The airline’s daily nonstop service to Calgary offers Portland and southwest Washington travellers another convenient connection to Canada.”

“We are extremely happy WestJet is adding these two U.S. destinations at YYC Calgary International Airport this spring,” said Bob Sartor, President and CEO, The Calgary Airport Authority. “The routes will allow our guests to explore two exciting cities in the United States.” 

“Calgary thrives as a city because of our connections to the world and stronger ties to leading cities in Texas and the West Coast means more opportunities for business and tourism,” said Mary Moran, President and CEO, Calgary Economic Development. “As a leading business centre in Canada, we applaud WestJet for its continued investment in Calgary and for adding direct air service to great cities like Austin and Portland that will create even more opportunities for people and companies to connect.”

RouteFrequencyDepartingArrivingEffective
Calgary – PortlandDaily10:30 a.m11:17 a.mApril 29, 2019
Portland – CalgaryDaily12:10 p.m2:57 p.mApril. 29, 2019
Calgary – AustinTwice 
Weekly
10 a.m2:43 p.mMay 2, 2019
Austin – CalgaryTwice 
Weekly
3:35 p.m6:31 p.mMay 2, 2019

WestJet will also increase service on the following routes from Calgary:

  • Calgary-Houston, from 12 weekly flights to 13 weekly flights.
  • Calgary-London (Gatwick), adding two weekly flights with daily Dreamliner service.
  • Calgary-Orlando, from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Calgary-Phoenix, will double service from once daily to twice daily.
  • Calgary-Puerto Vallarta, from three times weekly to four times weekly.
  • Calgary-San Diego, from three times weekly to four times weekly.
  • Calgary-San Francisco, will double service from once daily to twice daily.
  • Calgary-Kitchener, from seven weekly flights to eight weekly flights.

Other highlights of WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule include:

  • New non-stop three times weekly service between Edmonton and St. John’s.
  • Toronto-Nashville, from seven weekly flights to 10 weekly flights.
  • Toronto-Grand Cayman, will double service from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Toronto-Kingston, from three weekly flights to four times weekly.
  • Toronto-Liberia, will double service from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Toronto-Montego Bay, from 11 weekly flights to 12 weekly flights.
  • Toronto-Nassau from six to seven times weekly.
  • Toronto-Saint Maarten, will double service from once weekly to twice weekly.
  • Toronto-Halifax, adding five weekly flights for seven-times daily service Monday to Friday.
  • Toronto-Charlottetown, adding two weekly flights.
  • Halifax-Winnipeg, from four weekly flights to five times weekly.
  • Toronto-London, from two times daily to three times daily.
  • Extension of existing once weekly winter seasonal service between Vancouver and Orlando.

This summer, WestJet will operate over 750 daily flights in peak summer to 92 destinations including 42 in Canada, 23 in the United States, 27 in Mexico, the Caribbean and Central America, and five in Europe.

For more information on new routes and increased frequencies in WestJet’s 2019 summer schedule, please visit westjet.com/flight-schedules-new