US-Canada Border Closure Extended Until Late July

From Simple Flying – link to source story

by Sumit Singh | June 18, 2021

It has been a year and three months since a ban on non-essential travel between the United States and Canada was first imposed. Now, airlines and passengers looking to head over the border between the two countries will have to wait until at least July 21st.

Air Canada New York
Air Canada won’t be flying non-essential passengers across the Canada-US for at least another month. Photo: Getty Images

Another wait

There are high hopes for a change as airline advocacy groups on both sides of the border have been putting pressure on authorities to open things up. There were also hints of progress with Canadian Health Minister Patty Hadju talking of a phased reopening plan last week. Additionally, US congressman and co-chair of the Northern Border Caucus Brian Higgins shared that US President Joe Biden is keen for the border to open up.

Despite these glimmers of hope, those wanting to fly between the US and Canada for non-essential reasons will have to wait for at least over a month. Canada’s Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Bill Blair confirmed the news on Twitter.

Our number one priority as we fight #COVID19 is keeping Canadians safe. In coordination with the U.S., we are extending restrictions on non-essential international travel and with the United States until July 21st, 2021.

— Bill Blair (@BillBlair) June 18, 2021

A change of approach

Both US and Canadian carriers refocused their attention on domestic services following the restrictions set by the global health crisis. However, international activity now is seeing gradual improvement in the US following the easing of requirements to certain destinations. However, continued stringent restrictions in Canada are causing airlines in the country to continue their concentration on the domestic market through the summer.

WestJet Getty
The travel restrictions have been renewed on a monthly basis since March 2020. Photo: Getty Images

WestJet announced its domestic recovery in spring with 11 routes. Moreover, Swoop has been deploying its Boeing 737 aircraft to national vacation spots. Flair Airlines is also concentrating its new 737 MAX aircraft between its Canadian bases. After the border reopens, the ultra-low-cost carrier’s aircraft will also be seen in the US, the Caribbean, and Mexico.

This spring, Canadian aviation activity has been down by up to approximately 90% in capacity levels. In contrast, US domestic leisure travel is already seeing strong returns, with load factors at around 90%. So, overall, Canada’s aviation industry is feeling the impact of the pandemic much more than its neighbors in recent months.

Delta American LAX
US carriers have had a head start over their Canadian counterparts. Photo: Getty Images

Looking ahead

Nonetheless, Blair shared that there are plans in the works for some extra travel to restart this summer. The MP for Scarborough Southwest shared the following on Twitter.

“As we have said, the government is planning measures for fully vaccinated Canadians, Permanent Residents, and others who are currently permitted to enter Canada and will provide further details on Monday, June 21.”

Airline advocacy groups supporting the relaxation of restrictions are looking to end quarantine requirements for fully vaccinated travelers, end hotel quarantine policies for all travelers, and reduce quarantine for partially and vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers. Furthermore, they want a clear pathway to the reopening of consistent travel. These groups will undoubtedly be keeping a close eye on further announcements in the coming weeks.

Canadian airlines return to Puerto Vallarta after 4-month hiatus

From Mexico Daily News – link to source story

Puerto Vallarta and the Riviera Nayarit are looking forward to the Canadians coming back. Puerto Vallarta and the Riviera Nayarit are looking forward to the Canadians coming back.

Canadian airlines return to Puerto Vallarta after 4-month hiatus

One airline has already reactivated flights, and three more have confirmed dates

Published on Thursday, June 17, 2021

Canadian airlines are reactivating flights to Puerto Vallarta after a four-month suspension.

Westjet reinitiated its flights to the Jalisco beach destination on June 5, and Air Canada will be next with the reopening of its Vancouver route on August 1.

Low cost airline Swoop plans to restart its Hamilton and Edmonton flights October 5, and its Abbotsford and Toronto routes on November 3. It will also inaugurate a new route from Winnipeg on November 4.

Transat will relaunch flights from Toronto and Montreal in November.

Sunwing is still yet to inform clients of its plans to reopen, but has previously announced it hopes to reestablish its Mexico routes in December.

Marc Murphy, lead of the Riviera Nayarit Visitors and Conventions Office, said Canadians would be happy for the change of climate. “Each year, thousands of Canadians travel to this region to escape the intense winter cold and find an enviable climate, the most beautiful beaches … and a great quality hotel offering,” he said.

With reports from Reportur

Air Canada Inaugurates New Service from Montreal to Cairo, Egypt

  • Strategic rebuild of Air Canada’s global network begins with focus on leisure, and visiting friends and family traffic

MONTREAL, June 18, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada operated today its first non-stop service between Montreal and Cairo, serving the large Egyptian community established in Montreal and throughout North America, and providing an additional gateway to Africa.

“Air Canada is pleased to offer its first scheduled flights to Egypt. We are strategically rebuilding our international network by adding new routes that support leisure and visiting friends and family travel. With few non-stop options to Egypt from North America, we see opportunities to launch new non-stop flights to Cairo from Montreal where there is an established Egyptian community. We have also built convenient connections to and from our Cairo flights from across Canada and the US at our Montreal hub. This new route shows our commitment to rebuild our international network and our Montreal hub, which have been dramatically affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management.

Air Canada is offering three flights per week on a 255-seat Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner featuring a choice of three cabins of service: Air Canada Signature Class, Premium Economy and Economy class.

Customers can also collect and redeem Aeroplan miles 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. Our Maple Leaf Lounge located at the domestic gates in Montreal-Trudeau will reopen on June 23, providing access to eligible customers on domestic and international flights.

Flight schedule from Montreal-Cairo:

FlightDepartsArrivesDays of Week
AC74Montreal 17:50Cairo 10:15 +1 dayTuesday, Thursday, Saturday
AC75Cairo 12:00Montreal 17:00Wednesday, Friday, Sunday
* The schedule may be adjusted as required based on the COVID-19 trajectory and government restrictions. 

Flights are timed to optimize connectivity across Air Canada’s network and an expanded codeshare cooperation with Star Alliance partner Egyptair will also allow Air Canada customers to conveniently connect to several points in Egypt (Aswan, Hurghada, Luxor and Sharm El Sheikh), Bahrain and Jordan (Amman).

Air Canada’s new refund policy allows you to book with confidence, 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.

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.

PAL Airlines steps in to fill flight gap in N.L. after Air Canada’s departure

From CBC News – link to source story

Carrier adding 12 new routes, promising fares as low as $69

CBC News ·  Jun 17, 2021

Newfoundland and Labrador carrier PAL Airlines will fly as far as Ottawa starting this summer. (Submitted by PAL Airlines)

A Newfoundland and Labrador regional airline is stepping up to fill the void left by Air Canada’s departure from the majority of its routes in the province.

PAL Airlines, which flies small aircraft out of airports across the province, is on the brink of the largest expansion in the company’s history, adding 12 new routes to its schedule. The airline will unveil service to Halifax, Fredericton, Saint John, Charlottetown, Ottawa and several Quebec destinations.

They’ll be rolling out the new routes over the course of the summer as pandemic restrictions lift, says Janine Browne, the airline’s sales director.

Those routes had previously been serviced by Air Canada, which slashed flights to smaller communities across the country over the last year in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. A spokesperson told CBC News in January that the airline’s overall capacity was down 80 per cent from the previous year at the time.

The pandemic has been “devastating” for the industry, Browne said, noting PAL managed to “weather the storm.”

“We were able … to continue serving all of our regions,” Browne said. “This is an essential service for many of the communities and towns and cities that we serve.”

While Air Canada announced Tuesday it will be reestablishing some routes in the province, PAL’s expansion breathes life into airports still grappling with the pandemic.

“Air access is absolutely essential to economic recovery,” she said.

The expansion also offers customers an easier travel experience, Browne suggests, with more connecting destinations and partnerships with both WestJet and Air Canada — allowing passengers to buy one ticket and check their luggage only once during their trip.

Ottawa eyeing steep fares

But even as provinces set their reopening plans in motion for this summer, Newfoundlanders and Labradorians face significantly fewer travel options, with remaining flights to major domestic destinations costing more than usual.

The price hike prompted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to tell local business owners earlier this month that Ottawa believed fares would fall as demand rises.

“We’re watching very closely on connections, we’re watching very closely on reopening, we’re watching the prices, we’re watching tourism,” Trudeau told the St. John’s Board of Trade.

“We’re watching all these different factors to make sure that if there are gaps or challenges that are going to slow our recovery that we address them.”

Browne said she expects passengers to see significantly lower fares as the new routes launch, with some tickets setting passengers back as little as $69.

There’s a catch, though. Despite the partnership with Air Canada, anyone booking a PAL flight can’t avail of Aeroplan points.

That may change in the coming months, however.

“Who knows what the future holds,” Browne said.

Air Canada Begins Upward Trend Towards Recovery

From Airline Geeks – link to source story

An Air Canada 737MAX. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | Katie Bailey)

By Benjamin Pham | June 17, 2021

Air Canada Begins Upward Trend Towards Recovery

Many people have been forced to quarantine at home and follow strict guidelines to prevent the spread of Covid-19 for over a year, leading many to be eager for a return to the skies and being able to travel freely, which can be seen by already crowded airports and fuller flights worldwide.

Several major airlines have already begun to increase flight frequencies and inaugurate new flights to enhance route connectivity and accommodate the upcoming surge in air travel. In Air Canada’s case, this proposal has meant operating new flights to three new domestic cities and rebuilding its expansive route network in support of Canada’s tourism industry. 

Each provincial government has its own plans to eventually fully reopen, and thus the Star Alliance carrier plans to resume a substantial portion of its route network, including reinstating lucrative regional routes from its core hubs across Canada. The airline also scheduled three new routes from Montreal — one of its core hubs in Eastern Canada — to Deer Lake, Kelowna and Regina, Canada, with the latter operating via Saskatoon, Canada. 

“With Canada’s ongoing vaccine roll-out acceleration together with various provincial governments’ reopening plans that include travel, this summer is looking brighter. As customers are ready to travel, Air Canada is taking a leadership position to support our partners in Canada’s tourism and hospitality sector with service to 50 destinations from coast to coast, the re-start of regional services and new, non-stop flights,” Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada, said in a statement.

The airline will begin to fly from Quebec’s largest city to Kelowna on June 26, operating an Airbus A220 three times per week in July then four times per week in August, while daily flights to Deer Lake start on July 1, operated by a Bombardier CRJ-900. Flights to Regina and Saskatoon inaugurate on Aug. 1, operating on a CRJ-900 daily.

An Air Canada A320 parked in Los Angeles. (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Ambitious Future Plans

Economic and social effects from Covid-19  may continue to exist, but early last month, Air Canada announced the launch of more flights and the resumption of preexisting routes from the country to Hawaii. The airline began awaiting an upcoming busy winter holiday season at the end of 2021 before this summer had even begun. As a result, the Canadian flag carrier plans to launch flights from Montreal to Honolulu starting Dec. 12 and Toronto to Maui starting on Dec.18, while flights from Calgary to Honolulu begin Dec. 18.

“We are seeing strong demand in the sun markets this winter with people in Canada and around the world looking ahead to holiday travel. We have added new non-stop flights to Hawaii from Montreal and Toronto in addition to our flights from Calgary and Vancouver, making it more convenient than ever for Canadians across the country to experience the Hawaiian Islands. We know people will be excited to travel this winter, and we look forward to welcoming our customers on board,” Galardo said of the airline’s strategy of pumping more seats into the network to invite passengers back for air travel. 

Clearly, Air Canada is poised to recover from Covid-19 and recover from the substantial losses due to the rush in canceling and halting flights when the virus first began. Now, the carrier is one of a number of airlines that are quickly jumping on the opportunity to attract the growing demand in air travel and making decisions as quickly as when they had to reduce flights. But as the future remains as uncertain as ever in the industry, the airline must continue to be mindful of appropriately adapting to the evolving industry landscape to avoid incurring more losses in the months ahead.

Vacation packages from WestJet and Air Canada among prizes for COVID-19 double-dosed Albertans

From Canoe.com – link to source story

By Anna Junker   •  Jun 16, 2021  

Pharmacist Alison Davison prepares a dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacy on 17 Ave. S.W. in Calgary on Friday, March 5, 2021.
Pharmacist Alison Davison prepares a dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at Shoppers Drug Mart pharmacy on 17 Ave. S.W. in Calgary on Friday, March 5, 2021. PHOTO BY AZIN GHAFFARI/POSTMEDIA

Two all-inclusive seven-day trips for two to Mexico are among travel prizes for Albertans who receive two doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine.

Along with three separate draws for $1 million, Alberta’s Open for Summer Lottery is also offering 40 travel-related prizes provided by WestJet and Air Canada. The prizes range from stays at luxury resorts, to flights across Canada and abroad as well as points giveaways.

The packages offered by WestJet and Air Canada will be included in the August lottery draw for people who receive both vaccine doses. To enter, individuals must be age 18 or older. They can register online and must have received a first and second dose of COVID-19 vaccine before registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on Aug. 24. Winners for the travel packages will be announced on Aug. 31.

“Alberta’s government is doing everything it can to encourage Albertans to get vaccinated so we can put this pandemic behind us,” said Premier Jason Kenney in a news release.

“I would like to thank WestJet and Air Canada for providing yet another reason for eligible Albertans to get protected. In turn, we want Albertans to get their vaccines as soon as possible so we can fully open for summer and open for good.”

According to Alberta Health, the Open for Summer Lottery is supported by the AGLC and modelled on the lottery rules in the Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Act. The lottery does not require AGLC registration because tickets are not purchased.

Prize money for the lottery will come from the Alberta Health budget.

WestJet prizes

  • One WestJet vacation package for two to Dreams Vista Cancun Golf & Spa Resort, including round-trip economy flights and a seven-night all-inclusive stay.
  • One voucher for two people to fly round trip, business class, anywhere in WestJet’s network.
  • 10 vouchers for two people to fly round trip, economy class, anywhere in Canada.
  • Three giveaways of 1,500 WestJet dollars.
  • Five giveaways of WestJet Rewards Gold Status.

Air Canada prizes

  • One Air Canada vacation package for two to Planet Hollywood Cancun, including round-trip economy flights and a seven-night all-inclusive stay.
  • One voucher for two people to fly round trip, business class, anywhere in Air Canada’s network.
  • 10 vouchers for two people to fly round trip, economy class, anywhere in Canada.
  • Three giveaways of 100,000 Aeroplan bonus points.
  • Five giveaways of Aeroplan 50K Status.

YVR ready for travelers’ return

From City News 1130 – link to source story

BY NIKITHA MARTINS, TAMARA SLOBOGEAN AND RIA RENOUF | Jun 16, 2021

(Hana Mae Nassar, NEWS 1130 Photo)SUMMARY

  • YVR says it’s important to know what’s in store for your post-pandemic journey
  • From on-site COVID testing, to discussions around vaccine passports, YVR says they will be ready

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — Staff have been called back, and there’s excitement in the air. YVR says it is ready for more travellers once again as travel restrictions continue to ease up.

Preparations are well underway for the return of passengers at the airport, but Robyn McVicker, VP of Passenger Journey with YVR, says as we think about exploring the world beyond our backyard, it’s essential to know what you need to leave and come back to Canada.

“We want people to really think about preparing in advance. So do you have the right documentation? If you haven’t travelled in a year and a half, is your passport still valid? But then also understanding what are the requirements that are needed for you to come back into Canada? And what are the requirements that are needed for you to go to another place, whether it’s in Canada or in another country,” she tells CityNews.

Whether you are planning to travel to another province or internationally, McVicer stresses you need to understand COVID travel procedures coming and going.

“Second thing we want people to think about is a little bit of patience. The reality is, people are still going to have masks in the airport. And we know that the lines will look a little bit longer because of physical distancing. So just have patience. Know that we got you.”

McVicker adds, there will also be COVID-19 testing available in the airport.

A COVID testing site is available on Sea Island, but for people with COVID symptoms, YVR says “This site is not for private testing related to travel or work purposes nor is it available for walk-ins.”

Private testing is available in the International Terminal Building, Level 3, near the International Food Court.

This is for “Ticketed passengers travelling to the Netherlands, Germany, the United States or other countries that accept this test who must take a rapid test shortly before departure,” YVR’s site reads.

Ultima Vancouver Airport Medical Clinic will provide rapid antigen testing and LifeLabs has opened a pre-departure testing facility under its FlyClear program.

YVR working on ‘safe and effortless’ travel

But there is still long way to go until we have a full understanding of what air travel is going to look like.

“We don’t all know what the next phase of reopening is going to look like. So it is a challenge,” she says, adding, “But what I can tell you is that we are working very closely with the CBSA — the Canada Border Services Agency, we’re working very closely with Public Health Agency of Canada, and Transport Canada, and the airlines to ensure we’re ready.

“I can guarantee you that conversations are happening day in and night in on making sure that we are aligned …The passenger needs a cohesive, effortless experience to the airport. And it’s up to us to make sure that we work together to deliver that.”

As Ottawa feds continues talk with provinces and territories about creating some type of “passport” containing proof of vaccination against COVID-19, McVicker says YVR, “will be ready.”

“Whether it’s starting off with a paper copy, or whether it goes straight to digital. We know that there are federal agencies and provincial agencies that are working together to figure out what the right mechanism is from our end of things,” she says.

Details about when the Canada-U.S. border will reopen are expected in the coming days.

Air Canada vows to fight US$26-million penalty from U.S. over unpaid refunds

From CTV News – link to source story

Ross Marowits, The Canadian Press Staff | Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Air Canada planes sit on the tarmac at Pearson International airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

WASHINGTON — Air Canada is vowing to fight a U.S. Department of Transportation move to seek a US$25.5-million penalty for “failing to provide consumers prompt refunds” after cancelling their flights amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a “notice of enforcement proceeding” issued by the department Tuesday, its aviation consumer protection agency said Air Canada “unlawfully failed to provide timely refunds” for flights between the United States and Canada that were cancelled or significantly changed.

The agency said it received more than 6,000 refund complaints since March 1, 2020, and has notified Air Canada multiple times over the past year of its view that the airline’s stance “lacks merit.”

It said Air Canada has argued it is not required to provide reimbursement, citing the unique circumstances of the pandemic.

Air Canada said it believes the department’s position has no merit.

“Air Canada remains firm on its position and will vigorously challenge the proceedings,” spokesman Peter Fitzpatrick wrote in an email.

He said the airline has refunded more than $1.2 billion to eligible customers with refundable fares whose travel was impacted by COVID-19.

Air Canada refused to refund non-refundable tickets until it received a financial package in April from the Canadian government worth up to $5.9 billion, including up to about $1.4 billion in an unsecured credit facility to refund these tickets.

“This unlawful no-refund policy imposed significant harm to consumers and benefited Air Canada at the expense of other airlines that did comply with U.S. law,” the agency said in a report.

Multiple airlines refused for months to reimburse customers who paid for services that were never rendered after the airline industry ground to a halt due to travel advisories and border closures.

In addition to a prohibition on unfair practices, a department regulation requires airlines to provide refunds within seven days for purchases made by credit card and 20 days for cash and cheque purchases.

Given the significant volume of refund requests resulting from the pandemic, the department said it would use its enforcement discretion and not take action against airlines for missing those deadlines if they were making “good faith efforts” to provide refunds in a timely manner.

“Air Canada did not make such good faith efforts. Instead, for almost one year after the announcement of the May 2020 enforcement notice, Air Canada continued its no-refund policy in violation of U.S. law.”

Air Canada says the department’s refund rules are guidelines rather than regulations.

Air Passenger Rights president Gabor Lukacs said the U.S. action was “warmly welcomed, but not surprising.”

“The law in every jurisdiction, including Canada, requires airlines to refund flights the airlines themselves cancelled. Americans should cherish having a regulator that stands up for consumers.”

Air Canada told the department that it received more than 15,000 refund complaints or comments and 5,100 refund requests involving flights between the two countries that were cancelled by the airline due to the pandemic between March 13 and Nov. 13, 2020.

The agency has received almost 90 formal complaints and more than 6,000 informal complaints.

Air Canada is required to respond to the complaint within 15 days. The matter will then be decided by a Department of Transportation administrative law judge.

The U.S. agency also said it rejects airline arguments that they don’t have to refund fares for cancelled flights if passengers are offered other transportation options.

“We find it to be manifestly unfair for a carrier to fail to provide the transportation contracted for and then to refuse to provide a refund if the passenger finds the offered rerouting unacceptable (e.g., greatly delayed or otherwise inconvenient) and he or she no longer wishes to travel.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 15, 2021.

With files from Christopher Reynolds in Ottawa.

It’s official: First Air Canada flight will touch down at Saint John Airport on June 29

From CBC News – link to source story

Airport readies for post-pandemic relaunch as airline announces resumption of service dates for 50 airports

Marie Sutherland · CBC News · Jun 15, 2021

Saint John Airport acting CEO Greg Hierlihy says airline staff are onsite at the airport, training and preparing for flight resumption in two weeks. (Credit: Brian Comeau)

The first post-pandemic flights into and out of Saint John Airport have now been confirmed.

On June 29, exactly two weeks from today, Air Canada Flight ACA8790 from Montreal will touch down at YSJ at 9:18 p.m., officially reopening travel out of the airport. It will be the first commercial flight the airport has seen since January.

The airport’s first departure will follow on June 30 with an Air Canada flight to Montreal.

“It’s exciting,” acting CEO Greg Hierlihy said in an interview on Tuesday. “We’ve been waiting for this.”

From June 29 on, there will be three Air Canada flights a week to Montreal from Saint John, and four flights a week to Toronto, beginning in July.

Flair Airlines, an ultra low-cost carrier that has chosen Saint John Airport as its only New Brunswick destination, has confirmed it will begin flights out of YSJ on Saturday, July 3, Hierlihy said.

News comes as N.B. moves to Phase 1 of reopening

Earlier Tuesday, Air Canada released its resumption-of-services dates for 50 Canadian cities, including three new Western Canada routes.

Also on Tuesday, New Brunswick’s Chief Medical Officer of Health announced the province had hit its target of 75 per cent of the eligible population having a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

That launches Phase 1 of the province’s reopening plan at midnight, with loosened restrictions that will include the elimination of the steady-15 contacts requirement and allowing residents of Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador, Cumberland County in Nova Scotia, and Avignon and Témiscouata, Que., to visit without having to isolate or get tested.

Hierlihy said he has not heard whether there will be any COVID-19 testing required at the airport.

“We don’t decide that,” he said. “As far as I know, there’ll be no testing, there’s been no talk about testing. That’s a Public Health decision … and we’ll follow whatever the protocol is.”

In the meantime, he said, the airport has brought office staff back full time, and several airlines also have staff onsite.

“Air Canada staff are in the building this week and are doing training” in preparation for the relaunch, as are Flair Airlines staff, Hierlihy said.  

“That’s a welcome sight,” he said. “That’s how we know it’s really real, seeing the people who are going to be manning the counter here, in the building. It’s great.” 

Air Canada Supports Economic Recovery as the Country’s Leading Carrier, Serving 50 Cities Across Canada to Enable Canadians to Conveniently Connect

  • Most extensive domestic schedule supports Canada’s tourism and hospitality sector
  • Includes three new routes, re-established routes plus Air Canada Signature Class and Premium Economy Class cabins on select transcontinental routes
  • New refund policy gives additional peace of mind

MONTREAL, June 15, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada’s domestic peak summer schedule beginning at the end of June has been developed to advance the country’s economic recovery and support Canada’s tourism and hospitality businesses during the important summer period.  Three new domestic Canada routes, service to 50 Canadian airports, the re-establishment of select regional routes, and wide-body aircraft featuring Air Canada Signature Class and Premium Economy Class on select transcontinental routes are included. Seats with attractive pricing in all cabins are available for purchase now at aircanada.com, via the Air Canada App, Air Canada’s Contact Centres and travel agencies.

“With Canada’s ongoing vaccine roll-out acceleration together with various provincial governments’ reopening plans that include travel, this summer is looking brighter. As customers are ready to travel, Air Canada is taking a leadership position to support our partners in Canada’s tourism and hospitality sector with service to 50 destinations from coast to coast, the re-start of regional services and new, non-stop flights,” said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada.

“We are especially proud that our new state-of-the-art, Canadian-manufactured Airbus A220 aircraft will be operating across Canada. With our industry-leading CleanCare+ bio-safety protocols, promotional fares including for our premium cabins, compelling Aeroplan opportunities, and our new refund policy offering additional peace of mind, customers can book Air Canada with confidence.  We look forward to welcoming you onboard when you’re ready to fly,” concluded Mr. Galardo.

Air Canada’s new refund policy provides customers an option for a refund to the original form of payment in instances where Air Canada cancels their flight or reschedules the departure time by more than three hours, irrespective of the reason. Air Canada customers will also have the option of accepting an Air Canada Travel Voucher or Aeroplan points with a 65% bonus.  Normal fare rules will apply when customers make voluntary changes to non-affected flights.

New route details:

RouteFrequencyAircraftEffective
Montreal-Deer LakeDailyCRJ900Jul 1, 2021
Montreal-Kelowna3x Weekly July4x Weekly AugAirbus A220June 26, 2021
Montreal-Saskatoon-ReginaDailyCRJ900Aug 1, 2021

Resumption of services:

Airport StationRouteEffectiveFrequency
Gander Gander – HalifaxJun 293x Weekly
 Gander – TorontoJul 25x Weekly
St. John’s St. John’s – TorontoJun 19Daily
Goose Bay Goose Bay – St. John’sJun 293x Weekly
Deer Lake Deer Lake – HalifaxAug 15x Weekly
Halifax Halifax – CalgaryAug 15x Weekly
Sydney Sydney – TorontoJun 263x Weekly
 Sydney – MontrealAug 1Daily
Charlottetown Charlottetown – TorontoJun 184x Weekly
Saint John Saint John – MontrealJun 303x Weekly
 Saint John – TorontoJul 24x Weekly
Fredericton Fredericton – MontrealJun 29Daily
 Fredericton – TorontoJul 15x Weekly
Bathurst Bathurst – MontrealJun 273x Weekly
Quebec City Quebec City – TorontoJun 191x Daily
Ottawa Ottawa – CalgaryJul 2Daily
 Ottawa – EdmontonAug 12x Weekly
North Bay North Bay – TorontoJun 283x Weekly
Fort McMurray Fort McMurray – TorontoJuly 12x Weekly
Winnipeg Winnipeg – CalgaryJun 206x weekly
 Winnipeg – MontrealAug 1Daily
Regina Regina – CalgaryJul 15x Weekly
Saskatoon Saskatoon – CalgaryJul 25x Weekly
Kamloops Kamloops – VancouverJun 294x Weekly
 Kamloops – CalgaryJun 284x Weekly
Comox Comox – VancouverJun 303x Weekly
Nanaimo Nanaimo – TorontoJul 41x Weekly
 Nanaimo – CalgaryJul 25x weekly
Prince Rupert Prince Rupert – VancouverJun 253x Weekly
Penticton Penticton – VancouverJun 294x Weekly
Sandspit Sandspit – VancouverJun 233x Weekly
Victoria Montreal – VictoriaJun 193x Weekly
 Toronto – VictoriaJun 194x Weekly
 Calgary – VictoriaJun 214x Weekly
Castlegar Castlegar – VancouverJun 283x Weekly
Kelowna Kelowna TorontoJun 184x Weekly
Yellowknife Yellowknife – CalgaryJun 303x Weekly

Air Canada is also providing connectivity to five additional regional communities through interline agreements with third party regional carriers: Wabush, Baie Comeau, Gaspe, Mont Joli, and Val d’Or.

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

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.