CAE expands Toronto training center with new Boeing full-flight simulators

Montreal, Canada, May 3, 2022

CAE announced today at the 2022 World Aviation Training Summit (WATS), the expansion of the CAE Toronto Training Center for the deployments of a CAE 7000XR Boeing 787 and a CAE 7000XR Boeing 737 MAX full-flight simulators (FFS) to support its Canadian customers.

CAE is expanding its training center as Canadian airlines are expressing optimism that air travel will normalize in 2022, and as airlines around the world are preparing for business and international travel to return to pre-COVID levels in the following years.

“We are excited to expand our training footprint in Toronto with the immediate addition of new Boeing 787 and 737 MAX simulators to be deployed in the second half of 2022,” said Nick Leontidis, CAE’s Group President, Civil Aviation. “These latest additions complement our offerings and support the efforts of our Canadian-based airlines as they ramp up service and look for future growth.”

At the facility, pilots for the airlines will train on the industry’s most advanced full-flight simulators and benefit from digitally immersive solutions that elevate safety, efficiency, and readiness for Canadian travelers from coast to coast.

The CAE 7000XR Series FFS is the latest evolution of CAE’s industry benchmark FFS. Designed in collaboration with CAE’s customers, the CAE 7000XR Series sets a new standard in Level D FFS. Leveraging the latest advancements in technology and training capabilities, the CAE 7000XR Series is designed to optimize life-cycle costs for our customers and to address new and future training requirements. Enhanced features include the CAE Tropos 6000XR for extreme visual realism, a next-generation instructor office, upset prevention recovery training, and it is also built for lower ownership costs and increased reliability.

About CAE

CAE is a high technology company, at the leading edge of digital immersion, providing solutions to make the world a safer place. Backed by a record of 75 years of industry firsts, we continue to reimagine the customer experience and revolutionize training and operational support solutions in civil aviation, defense and security, and healthcare. We are the partner of choice to customers worldwide who operate in complex, high-stakes and largely regulated environments, where successful outcomes are critical. As testament to our customers’ ongoing needs for our solutions, over 60 percent of CAE’s revenue is recurring in nature. We have the broadest global presence in our industry, with more than 13,000 employees, 180 sites, and training locations in over 35 countries. www.cae.com

Air Canada reportedly in talks to add Airbus A321s as COVID subsides

From BNN Bloomberg News 🔗 link to source story

Charlotte Ryan, Siddharth Philip and Layan Odeh, Bloomberg News | 23 February 2022

Air Canada is in talks with Airbus SE about adding longer-distance A321neo jets alongside its fleet of Boeing Co. 737 narrowbodies as travel demand rebounds, people with knowledge of the matter said.

The carrier is looking at ordering 10 to 20 aircraft, one of the people said. The negotiations are preliminary and may not lead to a deal, according to the people, who asked not to be named discussing matters that aren’t public.

While Air Canada was an established operator of Airbus’s original A320 family, it chose the Boeing Max in the contest between new-generation planes. Adding a small fleet of A321neos would bring a further boost for an Airbus model that can carry 220 people in two classes over longer distances than the rival Max 10.

Air Canada is also talking with jet lessors about sourcing the A321s, one of the people said.

An Airbus spokeswoman declined to comment on any discussions the company may have with customers. 

Air Canada referenced a Feb. 18 conference call, when Chief Executive Officer Michael Rousseau discussed fleet renewal initiatives as the airline emerges from the pandemic. Last May, the CEO said that Airbus A321LR, or long range, models “potentially have a place in the Air Canada fleet as we go forward.”
 

AIRLINE PIVOTS

Other airlines have also returned to growth mode, looking ahead to fielding newer, less-polluting planes in the post-pandemic era as the drag on demand caused by the coronavirus starts to lift.

Qatar Airways, JetBlue Airways Corp. and Allegiant Travel Co. are among carriers making fresh narrow-body commitments since the start of the year. 

IAG SA, the parent of British Airways, is in advanced talks on a mixed order for dozens of single-aisle jets, including up to 50 Boeing Co. 737 Max and Airbus A320s also being discussed, Reuters reported earlier, citing industry sources. 

The order would be a step down from the 200-plane Max commitment to announced with fanfare at the Paris air show in 2019, yet it would still mark a victory for Boeing after IAG reopened the contest last year. IAG currently operates Airbus narrow-bodies.
 

AIR CANADA PLANS

Air Canada, which said Tuesday it will relaunch 34 international routes, announced last week that it had reinstated a commitment for 12 Airbus A220s, a smaller jet originally designed and built by Canada’s Bombardier Inc. 

The deliveries were canceled in 2020 after the virus stifled demand and Air Canada struggled to secure pandemic aid from the government. The carrier also scaled back its Boeing Max deal by a third to 40, and deferred some of those handovers. 

In November, Air Canada changed course, accelerating Max deliveries and reversing two of the A220 cancellations to restore its network.

As it stands, the fleet comprises around 170 aircraft, including older A320s and a Boeing-dominated wide-body lineup.

The A321, prized by airlines for its combination of capacity and range, is in short supply with yearslong production backlogs. Airbus’s cancellation of a Qatar Airways order amid a contract dispute could free up some capacity, though a London judge has ordered the manufacturer to hold the slots for now.

New Year Prospects: Air Canada’s Fleet In 2022

From Simple Flying – link to source story

by Chris Loh | January 1, 2022

Continuing its slow recovery from the worst of the global health crisis, major Canadian airline Air Canada the growth of its fleet in 2021. Notably, this consisted of the addition of a number of Airbus A220-300s as well as several Boeing 737 MAX 8s. Let’s take a glance at where Air Canada’s fleet stands at the start of 2022.

B737_Max_8_Water-1538
It appears that Air Canada took delivery of seven Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft during the 2nd half of 2021. Photo: Air Canada

Air Canada’s fleet composition at a glance

According to data from Planespotters.net, Air Canada has the following aircraft in its fleet. The quantities are noted alongside the type, with the change from last year’s report (published June 2021) in parentheses.

Aircraft from Airbus*:
  • A220-300: 27 (+5)
  • A320-200: 17 (-1)
  • A321-200: 15 (no change)
  • A330-300: 16 (no change)

*We should note that the airline ordered the A220 when it was still known as the Bombardier CSeries.

Aircraft from Boeing:
  • 737 MAX 8: 31 (+7)
  • 767-300BCF*: 3 (+3)
  • 777-200LR: 6 (no change)
  • 777-300ER: 18 (-1)
  • 787-8: 8 (no change)
  • 787-9: 29 (no change)

*One Air Canada 767-300 has completed its conversion from passenger to freighter. The remaining two are in the process of being converted.

B777-300ER-4
It appears that one Boeing 777-300ER left the fleet. Photo: Air Canada

Growing the short and medium-haul fleet

As you can see from the changes since our last Air Canada fleet report, the carrier has gained five Airbus A220-300s and seven Boeing 737 MAX 8s.

As noted previously, there was a little bit of a back-and-forth when the carrier announced it would be canceling some of its orders in November of 2020, which would have seen orders for 12 A220s and 10 737 MAX 8s axed. However, one condition of the Canadian government’s rescue package was that it would proceed with its planned orders for both aircraft types. As a result, the airline has nine 737 MAX 8s and 18 A220-300s still on the way.

A220-300-2
The airline continues to grow its A220 and 737 numbers. Photo: Air Canada

Going big on cargo operations

One surprising standout number from our list was the “addition” of three Boeing 767-300s from last year. This change is, again, a bit of a back and forth. During the worst of the crisis, Air Canada had decided to retire its 767s.

However, cargo demand has been soaring amid increased eCommerce activity, decreased transportation capacity, and global supply chain snarls. These factors led the airline to convert its passenger 767s into full freighters, complete with a large door to handle containers on the main deck. Work was, and continues to be, done at IAI facilities in Tel Aviv.

It’s not just 767s and the bellies of passenger aircraft being used for cargo operations. At the time of this article’s publication, the carrier has four of its 16 A330-300s and seven of its 18 Boeing 777-300ERs operating as “preighters” (passenger freighters). These are passenger aircraft which have had their seats removed in order to accommodate freight. Making use of the fleet’s younger jets for reasons unknown, the airline was able to provide additional cargo capacity to Canada’s west coast, which had its main road and rail supply lines cut off from the rest of the country in November, due to extreme and extensive flooding.

CAE deploys first Boeing 737 MAX full-flight simulator in Europe; Signs training deal with SAS

From Asian Aviation – link to source story

By Asian Aviation Staff – 3 November 2021

(PHOTO: CAE)

CAE announced has announced the expansion of its pilot training capacity in Europe through the deployment of a brand new CAE 7000XR Series Boeing 737 MAX full-flight simulator (FFS) at the CAE Amsterdam training centre.

“CAE provides the most innovative full-flight simulators (FFS) to improve training efficiency, offer advanced capabilities, and increase operational efficiency for airlines,” said Nick Leontidis, CAE Group president, Civil Aviation Training Solutions. “We are excited to expand our training footprint in Europe with this latest addition of our Boeing 737 MAX FFS. CAE is leading the industry with innovative training solutions and operational support to all of its customers across the globe”.

CAE has received close to 60 orders for Boeing 737 MAX full-flight simulators and has already  delivered more than 35 B737 FFSs of these orders for various customers around the world. CAE has six B737 Max FFSs installed at the company’s training centers located in Toronto, Dallas, Amsterdam, Dubai and Singapore. The CAE 7000XR Series FFS is the latest evolution of CAE’s industry benchmark FFS. Designed in collaboration with our customers, the CAE 7000XR Series sets a new standard in level D FFS. Leveraging the latest advancements in technology and training capabilities, the CAE 7000XR Series is designed to optimise life-cycle costs for our customers and to address new and future training requirements. Enhanced features include CAE Tropos 6000XR for extreme visual realism, next-generation instructor office, upset prevention recovery training, and built for lower ownership costs and increased reliability.

CAE signs long-term training deal with SAS for Airbus A350 pilots
CAE and Scandinavian carrier SAS, announced the signing of an exclusive Airbus A350 pilot training agreement until 2032. CAE already provides Airbus A320, A330 and Boeing 737 full-flight simulator (FFS) training to the airline’s pilots. CAE has been providing training solutions services, initial and recurrent pilot training, and cabin crew training to SAS for more than 10 years. Pilot training for Airbus A350 aircraft is a key part of SAS’s growth and fleet modernisation as the airline continues to open up new destinations and more frequent flights. In support of this agreement, CAE deployed an Airbus A320 FFS to its CAE Oslo training centre in 2021 and will deploy another Airbus A350 FFS to its CAE Copenhagen training centre in the beginning of 2022.

The Flair Airlines Fleet In 2021

From Simple Flying – link to source story

by Chris Loh | July 10, 2021

With Flair’s rapid expansion over the past year, the airline will need to ensure it has sufficient aircraft to fulfill its scheduling commitments. When the airline began 2021, it had three- yes, just three- Boeing 737-800 aircraft. Its fleet has now grown to have eight 737s, with more on the way. Let’s take a look at the Flair Airlines fleet in 2021.

Flair 737 Jet
Flair announced its order for 13 737 MAX 8 aircraft in late January 2021. Photo: Flair Airlines

Starting with just three 737-800s

Flair Airlines began the year with just three Boeing 737-800s. These jets were acquired on the second-hand market, flying with Flair since mid-2019. Collectively, these have an average age of just under 11 years. Registered C-FFLA, C-FFLC, and C-FFLJ, these older jets have flown with airlines such as Air China, Germany’s Air Berlin, and Thailand’s Siam Air. Simple Flying had an opportunity to fly onboard one of these jets, writing a review of the experience here.

The three 737-800s have been flying with Flair for two years now. Photo: Brand03 via Wikimedia Commons 

January 2021: A major acquisition

Then, at the start of 2021, Flair announced that it was taking on 13 737 MAX 8s from Boeing. These jets are coming to the airline through a lease agreement with a company called 777 Partners, an investment firm based in Miami with 25% ownership of Flair Airlines. As we had noted previously, 777 Partners had themselves recently signed off on purchasing 24 new MAX 8s directly from Boeing, with the option for a further 60 planes.

Commenting on the milestone order, Stephen Jones, President & CEO of Flair Airlines, said,

“Our efficient new aircraft will provide us the foundation to execute our ULCC business model. These planes will enable us to keep fares low while expanding our service to meet travel demand.”

Flair 737
The aircraft will be acquired on lease from 777 Partners, an investment firm based in Miami with 25% ownership of Flair Airlines. Photo: Flair Airlines

On May 29th, Flair took delivery of the first of these MAX jets. Planespotters.net data showed that the nearly two-year-old aircraft held three prior test registrations (N1786B, N1799B, N1782B, N57001) before taking its current Canadian letters.

Since late May, Flair has taken delivery of four more MAX 8s with a plan to take delivery of three more MAX 8s in the next few weeks. While this will push the airline’s total fleet size to 11, the airline’s January announcement to take 13 MAXs means it will have an initial fleet size of 16.

Ultimately, however, the airline has a goal of 50 aircraft within its first five years of operation. A goal which it has ‘codenamed’ “F50.” The carrier is likely to keep quite close to the low-cost-carrier playbook, ordering more of the same type to reduce training and operational costs associated with fleet diversification.

Whitetail 737s

While somewhat ‘brand new,’ without any previous owners, Flair’s newest jets are around one-and-a-half to two years of age. This would indicate that the aircraft are so-called ‘whitetails.’ These are aircraft originally built for another customer but canceled at some point along the way.

The age of these aircraft would indicate that they were canceled due to the 737 MAX crisis, which stretched from March 2019 to early 2021.

Flair 737 MAX
The airline recently announced its plan to launch service to the United States. Photo: Flair Airlines

With the MAX recertified by the FAA and Transport Canada, Flair is confident of the type’s safety. We would imagine that the leasing company acquiring the jets likely purchased them at a great price due to the MAX controversy and was thus able to pass those savings on to Flair.

While Flair’s fleet is certainly quite uniform (fitting with most budget airlines), its expansion in 2021 and anticipated growth over the next few years will certainly be exciting to watch.

Air Canada’s Fleet In 2021

From Simple Flying – link to source story

As Canada’s largest airline, Air Canada has a diverse fleet based across its four hub airports. The network airline has a mix of both widebody and narrowbody aircraft coming from both Airbus and Boeing. The carrier has gone through some changes in the past few years, with more significant upheaval taking place during the global health crisis. Let’s take a look at Air Canada’s fleet as it stands in 2021.

The Boeing 787 is Air Canada’s flagship aircraft. Photo: Air Canada

Air Canada’s fleet composition

According to data from Planespotters.net, Air Canada has the following aircraft in its fleet. The quantities are noted in parentheses.

Aircraft from Airbus*:
  • A220-300 (22)
  • A320 (18)
  • A321 (15)
  • A330-300 (16)

*We should note that the airline ordered the A220 when it was still known as the Bombardier CSeries.

Aircraft from Boeing:
  • 737 MAX 8 (24)
  • 777-200LR (6)
  • 777-300ER (19)
  • 787-8 (8)
  • 787-9 (29)
The average age of Air Canada’s A330-300s is 16 years. Photo: Air Canada

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Outside of regular passenger service

There are aircraft within the Air Canada fleet that are outside of the airline’s passenger operations.

Notably, we have the airline’s private/charter subbrand, Air Canada Jetz. This sub-group consists of four Airbus A319s. This fleet traditionally consisted of three A319s, but it appears a fourth was added in December 2020.

Used to transport touring musicians, sports teams, or private groups, these aircraft have an all-business configuration of 58 seats. With the exception of a short pandemic run, these aircraft tend to stay out of Air Canada’s regular passenger operations.

The Jetz jets flew an all-business-class service during the Winter of 2020 but are typically reserved for special charter operations. Photo: Ken Fielding via Wikimedia Commons 

As we will mention further in this article, Air Canada retired its 767s at the start of the health crisis. However, some of these are slated for a full conversion to freighters. The airline says that two freighters are expected to be in service in time for this year’s fourth-quarter peak airfreight season.

With seven 767s on the list for conversion, it looks like the remaining five will be converted next year, in 2022. This was confirmed by the carrier’s current Chief Financial Officer and future Chief Executive during the earnings call in which Simple Flying attended:

“We’d love to have all seven up and operating by the end of next year. These are typically little bit of a longer process and slots are not really available, but we are certainly working on having all seven up and running by Q4 of next year.” – Michael Rousseau, Chief Executive Officer, Air Canada

Coming and going

On the outgoing side of things, it was in May 2020 that Air Canada announced the early retirement of 79 aircraft. 

Retirements included five 767-300ERs, 16 A319s, and 14 E190s in the mainline fleet. Another 25 767-300ERs and 22 A319s that made up Air Canada Rouge were also retired.

Air Canada took delivery of its first A220 back in January 2020. Photo: Air Canada

Looking at future aircraft, Air Canada has a decent number of Boeing 737 MAX 8s and Airbus A220-300s yet to be delivered. There was a little bit of a back-and-forth when the carrier announced it would be canceling some of its orders last November. The plan would have seen the airline cancel orders for 12 A220s and 10 737 MAX 8s.

However, one condition of the carrier’s government rescue package was that it would proceed with its planned orders for both aircraft types. As it stands, 16 737 MAX 8s and 23 A220-300s are still on the way.

As you can see from the list of aircraft, Air Canada has a fairly diverse fleet- which is quite typical of a large network carrier that operates both short-haul and intercontinental service.

Flair Airlines Begins Service with the First of 13 New Boeing 737-8 Aircraft

The growing ULCC starts passenger service with inaugural flight from Edmonton to Toronto

EDMONTON, Alberta, June 10, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Flair Airlines, Canada’s only independent ultra low-cost carrier (ULCC), begins service today with the first of 13 new Boeing 737-8 aircraft joining the fleet as the airline begins rapid growth to provide affordable, low fare air travel to 19 Canadian destinations.

“Today marks a huge milestone as Flair grows to bring affordable travel options to more Canadians,” says Stephen Jones, President and CEO, Flair Airlines. “Canadians have been paying too much for too long, and Flair is changing that thanks to the addition of the new 737-8 aircraft which provide us the efficiencies and ability to scale our service. Today’s inaugural flight kicks off our rapid growth.”

The inaugural flight of Flair’s first new 737-8 will depart Edmonton at 5:30pm MT and arrive in Toronto at 11:20 pm ET. Piloting the inaugural flight will be two veteran leaders at Flair: Captain Matt Kunz, Vice President, Business Transformation and Operations, and Captain Harold Knop, Regulatory Compliance and Certification Manager.

The new aircraft allow Flair to achieve the lowest cost per seat mile of any Canadian airline. The aircraft will deliver fuel savings and cut the airline’s CO2 emissions by 14%. Lower per passenger emissions are a vital step in lowering Flair’s carbon footprint as it works to become Canada’s greenest and most sustainable airline.

Flair’s pilots, maintenance professionals, flight attendants and safety officers have been conducting extensive testing and training programs to prepare for the addition of the new aircraft. Flair’s team has been working closely with Boeing and been on-site throughout the testing and delivery phase of each aircraft.

Flair began taking delivery of the 13 new aircraft in May. The 737-8 aircraft are joining Flair’s existing fleet of 737-800 aircraft and deliveries continue throughout 2021. By the middle of next year, Flair will have a fleet of 16 aircraft and be well on the way to achieving its “F50” ambition of growing to 50 planes within five years.

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 19 cities across Canada. For more information, please visit www.flyflair.com

Flair Airlines Begins Service to Thunder Bay, Ontario

The fast-growing ULCC has started passenger service between Toronto and Thunder Bay

Edmonton, Alberta, June 2, 2021 – Flair Airlines, Canada’s only independent ultra low-cost carrier (ULCC), continues its expansion of service with the start of flights to Thunder Bay International Airport (IATA: YQT) in Ontario. The growing ULCC will provide passenger service between Toronto Pearson Airport and Thunder Bay and flights are available for booking through March 26, 2022, at flyflair.com.

Service begins in June with flights on Tuesdays and Saturdays. In July, the frequency increases with the addition of Thursday service.

“There is a tremendous demand for affordable air travel options in Canada,” says Garth Lund, Chief Commercial Officer.  “Connecting Ontario with flights between Thunder Bay and Toronto provides an affordable intra-provincial travel option as we have one way fares as low as $29. As travel begins to restart, this new route is a great option for staying within the province while supporting two Ontario communities.

Thunder Bay is one of several new Canadian destinations Flair is adding to its network in 2021 as it grows the fleet of aircraft. Flair’s first of 13 new Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft will begin passenger service on June 10.

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 19 cities across Canada. For more information, please visit www.flyflair.com 

Air Canada Eyes The A321LR As More A220s Set To Be Delivered

From Simple Flying – link to source story

by Jake Hardiman | May 7, 2021

While Air Canada does fly the Boeing 737 MAX series, most of its narrowbody aircraft belong to Airbus families. These include the five-abreast A220 series, of which the airline is set to receive a further 15 examples by the end of 2022. Interestingly, the Canadian flag carrier has also revealed an interest in Airbus’s long-range A321LR model.

Air Canada Airbus A220
The A220 has become popular among Air Canada’s passengers. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Four A220s delivered in Q1

Air Canada announced today at its first-quarter earnings call that it has continued its short-haul fleet modernization despite the industry’s present challenges. The Airbus A220 is leading the way in this regeneration, with Air Canada favoring the A220-300 variant.

This next-generation narrowbody has won favor among both employees and passengers for its enhanced efficiency and comfort levels. According to Planespotters.net, Air Canada presently has 19 137-seat A220-300s in its fleet, of which 17 are active. Of these, more than 20% arrived in Q1 of 2021. Indeed, the airline confirmed on the aforementioned call that “we took delivery of four Airbus A220 aircraft in the first quarter.”

Air Canada TCA A220 Retrojet
C-GNBN sports a stunning retro TCA livery. Photo: Air Canada

These four first-quarter arrivals came in the form of the following aircraft.

Next 15 deliveries also secured

The introduction of the A220 has played a significant role in the regeneration of Air Canada’s short-haul fleet. The type will replace its remaining A319s, which have an average age of 24 years. Amid the pandemic, it has not been unusual to see carriers defer orders. However, regarding its remaining A220s, the airline confirmed that:Advertisement:

“In March 2021, Air Canada concluded a committed secured facility totaling US$475 million to finance the purchase of the next 15 Airbus A220 aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2021 and 2022.”

Air Canada A220
Air Canada will receive its remaining A220s by the end of 2022. Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Potentially a place for the A321LR as well

In the longer term, Air Canada will be hoping that it can resume its longer-haul services to transatlantic destinations such as the UK and mainland Europe. However, ongoing uncertainty remains regarding different countries’ restrictions and vaccination rates.

As such, it may not see the demand levels that it had become accustomed to before coronavirus. With this in mind, the airline is open to trying new aircraft types in order to adapt to market fluctuations. For example, it stated that:Advertisement:

We’ve done a pretty good job covering ourselves for growth beyond our expectations, but certainly also for even further fine tuning. (…) That gives us the opportunity to then potentially step into new types of aircraft. Like the A321LRs, for example, that we like, and that certainly have a potential place in Air Canada’s fleet as we go forward.

Air Transat Airbus A321
Air Transat operates both first-generation (pictured) and ‘neo’ variants of the A321, including the latter’s ‘LR’ version. Will Air Canada follow suit in this respect?  Photo: Vincenzo Pace | Simple Flying

Of course, the carrier would not be the first Canadian airline to deploy this long-range version of the Airbus A321neo series. Indeed, Air Transat, whose merger with Air Canada was recently canceled, has operated the type since 2019. Last October, Air Transat even set the record for the world’s longest flight using the aircraft.

This saw it fly non-stop from Montréal, Canada to Athens, Greece. This represented an impressive distance of 7,600 km (4,100 NM), although it has since been beaten by Azores Airlines. Nonetheless, with the aircraft being an ideal fit for ‘long thin’ transatlantic markets, Air Canada’s interest is understandable.