Air Canada Adding Extra Cargo Capacity Into Vancouver to Help Maintain British Columbia’s Economic Supply Chain

  • In response to flooding that disrupted transportation supply chain network in the province
  • 586 tonnes of additional capacity added into and out of YVR, an increase of 45% over originally planned levels
  • Air Canada Express Dash 8-400 aircraft being converted into special freighter configuration to transport cargo

MONTREAL, Nov. 22, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada announced today that it has significantly increased cargo capacity into and out of Vancouver between November 21 and 30 from its hubs in Toronto, Montreal and Calgary as it works to ensure that the vital economic supply chain links in British Columbia are maintained following the impacts of last week’s flooding. In total, Air Canada is adding 586 tonnes of cargo capacity, representing 3,223 cubic metres to support B.C.’s economic supply chain and the needs of its communities. The additional capacity is equivalent in weight to approximately 860 adult moose.

“The economic supply chain is vital, and to help support the urgent transport of goods into and out of British Columbia, we have increased capacity to our YVR hub by using the flexibility of Air Canada’s fleet to reschedule 28 passenger flights from narrow-body aircraft to be operated with wide-body Boeing 787 Dreamliners, Boeing 777, and Airbus A330-300 aircraft. These changes will allow an additional 282 tonnes of goods to be moved across the country on our scheduled passenger flights,” said Jason Berry, Vice President, Cargo, at Air Canada.

“Additionally, Air Canada Cargo will operate an additional 13 all-cargo flights between our Toronto, Montreal and Calgary cargo hubs and YVR using widebody aircraft, providing approximately 304 tonnes of additional capacity. These aircraft will help move mail and perishables such as seafood, as well as automotive parts and other industrial goods,” concluded Mr. Berry.

Air Canada is also working with its regional partner Jazz Aviation to provide additional regional cargo capacity by temporarily converting an Air Canada Express De Havilland Dash 8-400 from its normal passenger configuration into a special freighter configuration. This Dash 8-400 Simplified Package Freighter operated by Jazz can carry a total of 18,000 lbs. (8,165 kg) of cargo and will be deployed to transport critical goods, as well as consumer and industrial goods and will be in service as early as this week.

Last week, as the impact of the devastating floods became apparent, Air Canada quickly added capacity to the Air Canada Cargo network by substituting larger widebody aircraft on 14 passenger flights into Vancouver.

Additional capacity added for passengers

In addition to the extra cargo capacity, Air Canada had also increased the number of seats available for customers in Kelowna and Kamloops since November 17, adding approximately 1,500 seats into both communities by utilizing larger aircraft on routes. This enabled people affected by the highway closures to fly into and out from these airports, and through the cargo capacity of these passenger aircraft, also allowed for the important transport of emergency medical supplies into these regions.

Air Canada continues to monitor the situation in British Columbia very closely and will adjust its passenger and cargo schedule accordingly.

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. 

WestJet’s global network expanding to include London Heathrow from Calgary

New route to accelerate Alberta’s economic recovery and drive investment attraction with connection to global hub

CALGARY, AB, Nov. 17, 2021 /CNW/ – WestJet today announced it will add non-stop service to London’s Heathrow Airport (LHR) beginning early Spring 2022. As WestJet continues to increase global connectivity from Western Canada, the addition of non-stop service between Calgary and London-Heathrow signals confidence in the recovery of business and leisure travel between both destinations.

WestJet’s newest route will operate this spring on the airline’s 787 Dreamliner (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)

“As the airline with the most flights from Alberta, this is an important recovery milestone as we forge new connections between Canada and one of the world’s most sought after global hubs,” said John Weatherill, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. “We continue to strengthen our network, offering more options for business and leisure travellers and these investments will expedite our industry’s recovery while ensuring Western Canada builds back from the pandemic more connected than ever before.”

As confidence in business and leisure travel continues to rise, WestJet’s newest route will operate this spring on the airline’s 787 Dreamliner. WestJet’s 787 service features the airline’s Business Cabin including lie-flat pods, dining on demand and elevated Premium and Economy Cabin options.

“We are committed to the expansion of our global hub in Calgary and supporting the recovery of many sectors who rely on travel and tourism,” continued Weatherill. “As the airline with the most non-stop European destinations from YYC, we are looking forward to guests benefitting from more options and increased connectivity for travel between Canada and the UK.”

With the addition of Heathrow to WestJet’s network this spring, WestJet will connect Calgary to 77 non-stop destinations throughout the year.  WestJet will also continue to offer non-stop flights between Calgary, Vancouver, Toronto and Halifax to London, Gatwick.

Additional network details for travel between Calgary and London-Heathrow including frequency, timing and introductory pricing will be available, and for sale, in the coming weeks.

Additional Quotes
“WestJet is a fantastic airline with a strong history of providing top-notch service and excellent value for money, making it a great fit for Heathrow. As travel begins to reopen, we look forward to working with WestJet to improve the UK’s connectivity with Canada and give passengers even more choice when flying across the Atlantic.” 
–   John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow CEO

“WestJet’s new non-stop route from YYC to London Heathrow, Europe’s busiest airport, is welcomed by those looking to access the world’s premier financial and business centre and those eager for a direct connection to explore London’s culture and landmarks. We look forward to welcoming guests from across the pond to experience the traditional Indigenous lands and warm hospitality our region is known for.”
–    Bob Sartor, President & CEO of The Calgary Airport Authority.

“Congratulations to WestJet for continuing to invest in new ways to connect Calgarians and our economy to the world. London Heathrow is a critical access point for business and leisure travellers and will be of great benefit to investors and tourists who want world class access to our region.”
–    Jyoti Gondek, Mayor of Calgary

“Air access is key to our province’s economic recovery and growth of the tourism industry We look forward to welcoming back UK travellers and showcasing Alberta as a top destination.”
–    David Goldstein, CEO Travel Alberta

“Having direct flight access to Heathrow, enhancing connectivity to London, a global capital market and business hub will further enhance Alberta’s competitiveness for investment and trade. This is also the latest signal to global investors of confidence in Alberta’s economy and economic recovery.  We look forward to putting these flights to good use bringing investors and business to our province who will bring with them capital and jobs for Albertans.”
–    Rick Christiaanse, CEO, Invest Alberta Rick Christiaanse Invest Alberta

“WestJet’s non-stop service to the globally recognized London Heathrow Airport is great news for ensuring continued investment and talent attraction to our city as we work together to make Calgary the destination of choice for the world’s best entrepreneurs.”
–    Brad Parry, Interim President & CEO, Calgary Economic Development.

About WestJet 

In 25 years of serving Canadians, WestJet has cut airfares in half and increased the flying population in Canada to more than 50 per cent. WestJet launched in 1996 with three aircraft, 250 employees and five destinations, growing over the years to more than 180 aircraft, 14,000 employees and more than 100 destinations in 23 countries, pre-pandemic.

Since the start of the pandemic the WestJet Group of Companies has built a layered framework of safety measures to ensure Canadians can continue to travel safely and responsibly through the airline’s Safety Above All hygiene program. During this time, WestJet has maintained its status as one of the top-10 on-time airlines in North America as named by Cirium.

For more information about everything WestJet, please visit westjet.com

Air Canada restarts Dublin–Toronto flights

From the Irish Times – link to source story

Airline flying three times a-week between destinations, with return flights to each on alternate days

Barry O’Halloran | 4 August 2021

The airline will use a Boeing 787-9 on the route with 298 seats, including 247 in economy. File photograph

 Air Canada has restarted Dublin-Toronto flights in a boost to the Republic’s transatlantic network.

The airline said on Wednesday that it has begun flying three times a-week between the capital’s airport and Toronto, with return flights to each on alternate days.

Air Canada will fly Dublin-Toronto on Mondays, Thursdays and Saturdays, and Toronto-Dublin on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays.

Stephen Gerrard, Air Canada general manager sales, UK and Ireland, said the service would provide Irish customers with direct access to Toronto plus connections to 40 destinations in Canada, the US and Mexico.

The airline will use a Boeing 787-9 on the route with 298 seats, including 247 in economy.

Canada will this month begin easing restrictions for non-nationals who have been fully-jabbed with vaccines recognised by its health authorities, which include those used in the Republic.

Some curbs will remain in place until early September, when the Canadian government has pledged a further easing of restrictions, depending on progress in restraining Covid-19.

WestJet gives guests more options via Amsterdam

Airline strengthens codeshare with KLM, adds AMS connections to 18 European cities   

CALGARY, AB, July 26, 2021 /CNW/ – WestJet today announced the evolution of its long-standing codeshare relationship with KLM Royal Dutch Airlines through the placement of its “WS” codeshare on KLM-operated flights. Through the expanded codeshare agreement, guests will now have convenient access via Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport (AMS) to 18 cities across Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom.

Guests will now have convenient access via AMS to 18 cities across Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)
Guests will now have convenient access via AMS to 18 cities across Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Spain and the United Kingdom. (CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)

The enhanced partnership builds on the airline’s new non-stop 787 Dreamliner service between Amsterdam and Calgary and provides greater access between Canada and European points for travellers on both sides of the Atlantic.

“Through this expanded codeshare relationship with KLM our guests will benefit from new opportunities to travel between Europe and Canada,” said John Weatherill, WestJet Chief Commercial Officer. “Our Dreamliner service to Amsterdam combined with convenient connections on a world-class partner like KLM is an exciting step as we work to support the safe restart of international travel.” 

WestJet’s inaugural service between Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (AMS) and Calgary International Airport (YYC) is set to depart on August 5, 2021. The airline’s new service will operate two-times weekly beginning August 5, 2021 and will increase to three-times weekly as of September 9.  All AMS flights will be on WestJet’s 787 Dreamliner, featuring WestJet’s Business Cabin including lie-flat pods, dining on demand and WestJet’s award-winning caring service.

“This is an exciting development for inbound travel and tourism to Alberta from key European markets via Amsterdam,” said David Goldstein, CEO, Travel Alberta. “Rebuilding these targeted international air links is critical to the province’s economic recovery. We look forward to working with WestJet to re-establish Alberta’s competitiveness as a business and leisure destination emerging from the pandemic.”

Details of WestJet’s service between Calgary and Amsterdam:

RouteFrequencyStart Date
Calgary –
Amsterdam
2x weeklyAug. 5 – Sept. 5, 2021
3x weeklySept. 9 – October 31,
2021
Amsterdam –
Calgary
2x weeklyAug. 6 – Sept. 6, 2021
3x weeklySept. 10 – November 1,
2021

Details of WestJet’s codeshare with KLM via AMS:

Airport
Code
CityCountry
VIEViennaAustria
BRUBrusselsBelgium
TLSToulouse*France*
LYSLyon*
MPLMontpellier/Mauguio*
FRAFrankfurtGermany
MUCMunich
BERBerlin
HAJHanover
MXPMilanItaly
VCEVenice
LISLisbonPortugal
MADMadridSpain
GLAGlasgowUK
EDIEdinburgh
MANManchester
LCYLondon
LHRLondon

*Pending regulatory approval

About WestJet 

In 25 years of serving Canadians, WestJet has cut airfares in half and increased the flying population in Canada to more than 50 per cent. WestJet launched in 1996 with three aircraft, 250 employees and five destinations, growing over the years to more than 180 aircraft, 14,000 employees and more than 100 destinations in 23 countries, pre-pandemic.

Since the start of the pandemic the WestJet Group of Companies has built a layered framework of safety measures to ensure Canadians can continue to travel safely and responsibly through the airline’s Safety Above All hygiene program. During this time, WestJet has maintained its status as one of the top-10 on-time airlines in North America as named by Cirium.

For more information about everything WestJet, please visit westjet.com

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 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.

In Photos: Air Canada Gets Olympic Ready With A Special Livery

From Simple Flying – link to source story

by Tom Boon | June 30, 2021

Air Canada is launching a new special livery just in time for the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics. The new livery is plastered on one of the airline’s Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft. The aircraft is set to enter general circulation with Air Canada before being placed on the airline’s Tokyo Narita route during the Olympic Games.

Air Canada, Olympic Livery, Boeing 787
Air Canada is getting into the Olympic spirit. Photo: Air Canada

Once every four years, or occasionally five years when there’s a pandemic, the Olympic Games are hosted. Typically this means a mammoth logistical challenge, getting teams, fans, and even flames worldwide. Air is usually the most practical option, with airlines willing to lend a hand.

Air Canada’s Olympic livery

Many airlines get involved in the festivities with special aircraft liveries. There are a few special liveries to share, but first, we’ll take a look at why we’re here. Air Canada has applied an Olympic-themed livery to C-FVLQ, a three-and-a-half-year-old Boeing 787-9.

Air Canada, Olympic Livery, Boeing 787
The livery is in English and French. Photo: Air Canada

The livery is relatively simple but gets the job done. On the aircraft’s port side, “Fly The Flag” is written in big black and gold lettering. Meanwhile, on the other side of the aircraft, the same lettering reads “Haut Le Drapeau”, the French expression with the same meaning. On both sides, it also says “Go Canada Go!” in all gold lettering.

Air Canada, Olympic Livery, Boeing 787
Air Canada says Go Canada Go! Photo: Air Canada

According to the fleet number listed on the side of the aircraft, the livery has been applied to C-FVLQ. This is a 3.54-year-old Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, according to ch-aviation.com. It completed its first flight on December 18th, 2017, before being delivered to Air Canada on January 12th.

Air Canada, Olympic Livery, Boeing 787
The aircraft will fly to Tokyo’s Narita Airport during the Olympic Games. Photo: Air Canada

As of February 28th, the aircraft had completed 14,884 flight hours across 1,812 flight cycles. It arrived in Toronto to get its paint job on Sunday before operating its first flight in the new livery to Vancouver today.

Other Olympic Liveries

The Olympic livery from Air Canada is by no means the only one that has ever been launched. There are typically two reasons that airlines may choose to apply an Olympic livery, and both can be explained using British Airways. When London was the host city of the 2012 games, the airline decked out an Airbus A319, G-EUPC in a special livery to carry the Olympic Flame to the UK. 

Air Canada, Olympic Livery, Boeing 787
The Firefly livery carried the Olympic Flame to the UK in 2012. Photo: British Airways

As was seen with Air Canada’s livery, airlines also create special liveries to carry their teams to and from the games. For example, after the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro, British Airways put a gold nose on the Boeing 747 bringing the team home, representing the 27 gold medals won by the team, putting it in second place overall behind the United States with 46 golds.

Air Canada, Olympic Livery, Boeing 787
A golden nose brought the UK team back from the 2016 Olympic Games. Photo: British Airways

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.

Air Canada Supports India Relief Efforts by Transporting Critical COVID-19 Medical Supplies

Cargo-only flight to ship ventilators, oxygen cylinders, oxygen generators and PPE to Delhi

MONTREAL, May 18, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada today announced it is supporting India relief efforts in collaboration with the Toronto Business Development Centre (TBDC) and the Government of Ontario by operating a cargo-only flight to Delhi, providing urgent medical supplies to the Indian population which has been severely hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are all deeply saddened by the devastating situation in India, and no one can remain indifferent to what is happening now in that part of the world,” said Jason Berry, Vice-President, Cargo at Air Canada. “When flights to India were suspended on April 22, the movement of essential goods between the two countries was also halted. Today, with this exceptional cargo-only flight, we are grateful to be able to help and contribute to these relief efforts by shipping critical medical supplies. We worked closely with the Toronto Business Development Centre and the Government of Ontario to ensure timely support, in solidarity with the affected communities.”

Air Canada

“We share a strong and deep relationship with India, and we stand with its people and frontline workers during these difficult times. India is the world’s largest vaccine manufacturer and has so far shipped over 66 million doses around the globe. We invite the global community to help them fight the pandemic because unless everyone is safe, no one is safe.” Vikram Khurana, Chairman Toronto Business Development Centre.

An Air Canada Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner will operate a cargo-only flight today with 40 tons of essential supplies from Toronto Pearson Airport to Delhi. The freight includes critical medical equipment such as oxygen cylinders, oxygen generators and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

Air Canada will also be carrying 100 ventilators donated recently by the Saskatchewan Government.

The medical equipment donated by government agencies and partners is new and these supplies will be consigned to the Red Cross upon arrival in India.

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 Marks the 70th Anniversary of its Montreal–Paris Route

  • Air Canada is the North American airline that has offered service to France the longest

MONTREAL, April 1, 2021 – Today, Air Canada, the longest-serving North American airline in France, is celebrating the 70th anniversary of its Montreal–Paris route.

On April 1, 1951, a four-engine, 40-passenger Canadair North Star, registered as CF-TFO and operated by Trans-Canada Air Lines (now Air Canada), touched down for the very first time at Orly airport, in the suburbs of Paris.

Initially entailing a layover in London, UK, the flight between Montreal and Paris quickly became a non-stop, weekly service after its initial success.

Air Canada’s Montreal-Paris route serves Roissy-Charles de Gaulle Airport on a year-round basis. The regular schedule consists of two daily flights in summer season and one daily flight in winter season.

Air Canada’s flights are operated with Boeing 777-300ER aircraft (450 seats), Airbus A330-300 aircraft (297 seats) or Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners (298 seats). Customers have a choice of three service classes: Air Canada Signature Class, Premium Economy and Economy.

“This is an important milestone for our airline, our customers and, more specifically, Air Canada’s French colleagues,” said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada. “This 70th anniversary is a testament to the special, enduring relationship between the two cities, which have a long history of partnership and collaboration. This transatlantic flight from Canada sees the most demand and is a key part of our DNA. In addition, despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 crisis, Air Canada has never suspended its Montreal–Paris route during the pandemic, and our sole ambition is to re-establish Air Canada’s presence in other French cities in order to continue to strengthen the ties that unite us.”

For the last 70 years, Air Canada has continued to bolster its presence in France and the French Caribbean, and to increase its commitment to French territories. 

Before the onset of the pandemic, Air Canada served seven French cities: Paris, Bordeaux, Lyon, Marseille, and Nice, as well as Fort-de-France and Pointe-à-Pitre in the Caribbean. The airline operated up to 45 weekly flights from its hub airports in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver, which offered connections to more than 50 destinations in the Americas.

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.