Air Canada inaugurates twice-weekly, non-stop service between Montreal and San Jose, Costa Rica

Courtesy: Air Canada.

Air Canada today (December 22th, 2016) inaugurated new twice-weekly flights between Montreal and Costa Rica. This morning’s departure of Air Canada Rouge flight AC1844 begins non-stop service from Montreal to Costa Rica’s Juan Santamaría International Airport that will operate until April 23, 2017.

“Air Canada is very pleased to inaugurate this new, seasonal service between Montreal and Costa Rica, providing customers even more options when travelling to this popular Latin American vacation destination. The new flight complements Air Canada’s existing TorontoSan Jose service and our flights from Toronto and Montreal to Liberia in Costa Rica. It also serves to further support Air Canada’s ongoing global expansion, which has seen capacity grow from its strategic Montreal hub by 20 per cent over the past two years,” said Benjamin Smith, President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada.

Air Canada’s San Jose flights will be operated by Air Canada Rouge, Air Canada’s vacation carrier, with a 282-seat Boeing 767-300ER featuring two classes of service with 24 Premium Rouge seats and 256 seats in Economy Class. Flights provide for Aeroplan accumulation and redemption and, for eligible customers, priority check-in, Maple Leaf Lounge access in Toronto, priority boarding and other benefits.

Flight

Departs

Arrives

Days of the week*

AC1884

Montreal at 7:40

San Jose at 12:14

Thursday, Sunday

AC1881

San Jose at 13:35

Montreal at 19:45

Thursday, Sunday

*: Service operates until April 23, 2017.
Source: Air Canada.

Air Canada inaugurates year-round service between Toronto and Port of Spain, Trinidad

Courtesy: Air Canada.

Air Canada today (December 20th, 2016) inaugurated new year-round service between Toronto and Trinidad. This morning’s departure of Air Canada Rouge flight AC1880 marks the beginning of twice-weekly, non-stop flights from Toronto to Port of Spain’s Piarco International Airport.

“Air Canada is very pleased to inaugurate this new, year-round service between Toronto and Port of Spain as part of our ongoing global expansion. In addition to being a popular vacation destination for Canadians, Canada and Trinidad and Tobago have longstanding ties, with many Canadians of Trinidadian descent visiting friends and relatives, and there are also substantial business ties. This new service will connect conveniently with our extensive domestic and international network through our Toronto-Pearson global hub,” said Benjamin Smith, President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada.

Air Canada’s Toronto-Port of Spain flights will operate with a 280-seat Boeing 767-300ER featuring two classes of service with 24 Premium Rouge seats and 256 seats in Economy Class. Flights provide for Aeroplan accumulation and redemption and, for eligible customers, priority check-in, Maple Leaf Lounge access in Toronto, priority boarding and other benefits.

Flight

Departs

Arrives

Days of the week

AC1880

Toronto at 8:45

Port of Spain at 15:10

Tuesday, Thursday

AC1881

Port of Spain at 16:35

Toronto at 21:25

Tuesday, Thursday

Source: Air Canada.

Air Canada launches new non-stop service between Montreal and San Juan, Puerto Rico

Courtesy: Air Canada.

Air Canada today (December 17th, 2016) inaugurated a new non-stop service between Montreal and Puerto Rico. This morning’s departure of Air Canada flight AC958 marks the beginning of weekly flights from Montreal to San Juan’s Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport, which will operate as a seasonal service this winter.

“This new route from Montreal will make it easier for customers to travel to Puerto Rico from eastern Canada and complements our existing twice-weekly services between Toronto and San Juan. It also strengthens Air Canada’s Montreal hub, which is playing a significant strategic role in our ongoing global expansion. Our capacity in Montreal is up nearly 20 per cent over the last two years and in the past year alone we have launched or announced 13 new destinations from the city, including Shanghai, Algiers, Lyon, and Marseille,” said Benjamin Smith, President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada.

“I would like to congratulate and thank Air Canada for adding San Juan, Puerto Rico to its already impressive list of non-stop destinations served from Montreal,” said James Cherry, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aéroports de Montréal. “This new service will offer one more option to our passengers seeking to diversify their sun destinations.”

Air Canada’s Montreal-San Juan flights will operate with a 146-seat Airbus A320 featuring two classes of service with 14 Business Class seats and 132 seats in Economy Class. The aircraft features a personal seatback In-Flight Entertainment system and a power outlet available at every seat throughout the aircraft. Flights are timed for convenient connections through Air Canada’s extensive international network and provide for Aeroplan accumulation and redemption and, for eligible customers, priority check-in, Maple Leaf Lounge access in Montreal, priority boarding and other benefits.

Flight

Departs

Arrives

Day of the week*

AC958

Montreal at 8:00

San Juan at 14:00

Saturday

AC959

San Juan at 14:45

Montreal at 18:59

Saturday

*: Service operates until April 22, 2017.
Source: Air Canada.

Bombardier CS300 aircraft successfully starts revenue service with airBaltic

Courtesy: Bombardier.

Bombardier Commercial Aircraft today (December 14th, 2016) congratulated launch operator airBaltic on the superb execution of the CS300 aircraft’s first commercial flight. With 120 passengers aboard, including local media, the flight departed Riga and landed in Amsterdam. airBaltic is operating the CS300 aircraft in a 145-seat, two-class configuration. The airline has ordered a total of 20 CS300 aircraft.

“airBaltic has been counting down the days to this landmark moment. During its maiden commercial flight today, the CS300 aircraft performed beyond our expectations and offered a new level of travel experience for our customers,” said Martin Gauss, Chief Executive Officer, airBaltic. “We look forward to serving many communities across Western Europe and the Eastern markets with the CS300 aircraft – the largest variant in the world’s most efficient and environmentally friendly family of airliners.”

“As one of the World’s Most Innovative Airlines, airBaltic’s flawless entry-into-service of the state-of-the-art CS300 aircraft signals the airline’s progress with its fleet modernization strategy,” said Fred Cromer, President, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “The CS300 aircraft’s entry-into-service also confirms Bombardier’s successful execution on our commitment to deliver the only all-new family of single-aisle airliners the 100- to 150-seat market in 30 years.”

“Today’s commercial flight highlights the remarkable journey between airBaltic and Bombardier as the CS300 aircraft is brought to market,” said Rob Dewar, Vice President, C Series Aircraft Program, Bombardier Commercial Aircraft. “We salute airBaltic, our employees, suppliers and industry stakeholders for their steadfast loyalty to the success of the C Series aircraft program.”

Since entering revenue service with SWISS, the CS100 aircraft has completed more than 1,600 flights — carrying over 156,560 passengers, covering over 1,181 500 km and serving 18 destinations.

Source: Bombardier.

Melbourne – Los Angeles announced as first Dreamliner route

Courtesy: Qantas.

The Qantas Dreamliner will carry 236 passengers in a three-class configuration and complement the daily Airbus A380 service already flying from Melbourne to Los Angeles. Operating six times per week, the Dreamliner will replace the 747 service that currently operates on this route alongside the A380.

Qantas International CEO Gareth Evans said the arrival of the Dreamliner would be a step change for the airline and for customers, both in terms of operational efficiency and passenger comfort.

“The Dreamliner is a game-changing aircraft that opens up a new era for Qantas, and it’s been designed with passenger comfort in mind,” said Mr Evans.

“The aircraft itself offers passengers larger windows, a smoother ride and better air quality to reduce jetlag.

“In Economy there’s more room and plenty of storage. In Business, our suites will offer a fully flat bed and direct aisle access. We’ll be unveiling our Premium Economy in the first quarter of next year and it will set new standards for the industry.”

Mr Evans made the announcement while visiting the Boeing Aerostructures Australia facility at Port Melbourne with Victorian Tourism Minister John Eren. The factory manufactures parts of the 787 wing, which are then shipped to the United States for the aircraft assembly.

“We’ll be working with Visit Victoria on joint marketing campaigns to highlight what Victoria and the Qantas Dreamliner have to offer,” said Mr Evans.

Today’s announcement (December 13th, 2016) follows Qantas confirming it will fly non-stop from Perth to London from March 2018. Travellers on the East Coast are expected to also use the service, cutting up to an hour off their total travel time.

The 787-9 Melbourne-Los Angeles service will operate six days a week. This takes the total number of Qantas services on the route from nine to 13 return flights per week and will give customers the convenience of a morning or afternoon departure from Melbourne on most days. As it replaces a larger, 364-seat 747 that operates twice a week, the net capacity increase is approximately 1,400 seats in total.

Fares will be on sale from Christmas Day 2016.

*: Subject to final government and regulatory approval.

Source: Qantas.

Qantas to fly non-stop Perth to London

Courtesy: Qantas.

Qantas is set to add to its list of aviation firsts, with the national carrier confirming it will operate non-stop flights from Perth to London using the 787-9 Dreamliner.

The 14,498 kilometre service will be the first regular passenger service to directly link Australia with Europe when it begins in March 2018.

Qantas Group CEO Alan Joyce said the history-making route would be a watershed for travel, tourism and trade.

“When Qantas created the Kangaroo Route to London in 1947, it took four days and nine stops. Now it will take just 17 hours from Perth non-stop.

“This is a game-changing route flown by a game-changing aircraft. Australians have never had a direct link to Europe before, so the opportunities this opens up are huge.

“It’s great news for travellers because it will make it easier to get to London. It’s great news for Western Australia because it will bring jobs and tourism. And it’s great news for the nation, because it will bring us closer to one of our biggest trade partners and sources of visitors.”

Mr Joyce said passenger comfort on the long flight was a key consideration.

“When we designed the interior of our 787s, we wanted to make sure passengers would be comfortable on the extended missions the aircraft was capable of.

“That’s why we have features in our Economy seats that other airlines reserve for Premium Economy. Our Business Suite has been nicknamed ‘mini First class’ by many of our frequent flyers. And we’re redesigning our on-board service to help reduce jetlag,” he added.

The enhanced Qantas cabin design is in addition to the comfort factors that Boeing built in to the Dreamliner – improved air quality, lower cabin noise and technology to reduce turbulence.

Mr Joyce said the direct route is expected to appeal to travellers on the East Coast as well as West Australians, helping to deliver a tourism boost.

“A direct flight makes travelling to Australia a much more attractive proposition to millions of people. We expect many travellers from Europe will start their time in Australia with a visit to Perth before going on to see other parts of the country.

“Our modelling shows that people from the East Coast as well as South Australia would fly domestically to Perth to connect to our non-stop London service. Some will take the opportunity to break their journey, whether it’s for business meetings in Perth, to holiday or to visit family.”

The new flight will operate through Qantas’ existing domestic terminals (T3/4), which will be upgraded to accommodate international flights. The airline’s current international services from Perth (to Singapore and to Auckland) will also move to this terminal, helping to simplify the journey for thousands of people every year. Qantas will move its operations to an expanded Terminal 1 at Perth Airport by 2025, pending a commercial agreement.

“We’ll be looking at the timing of our domestic flights through Perth to offer the best connections we can to our international flights, particularly given they will all be under the one roof,” added Mr Joyce.

“I’d like to acknowledge the support of the West Australian Government and Perth Airport in helping make this service a reality.”

Seats on the Perth-London flights will go on sale in April 2017 for the first services in March 2018. The Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners used on the route will carry 236 passengers across Business, Premium Economy and Economy cabins.

Source: Qantas.

British Airways: New French alpine route takes off from Stansted

Courtesy: British Airways.

Winter sports fans will have a direct gateway to some of Europe’s top snow resorts from Stansted tomorrow (December 17) with the launch of new British Airways flights to the French Alpine city of Chambery.

The well-timed weekend flights will give customers easy access to some of the top snow and ski resorts like Val d’Isere, La Plagne, Meribel and Courchevel.

Each way fares are available for £49 on www.ba.com. Other fares which include ski carriage are also available.

British Airways started flying from Stansted for the first time in May this year, adding a fourth London airport to its network.

The new twice-weekly service to Chambery will complement the British Airways service from London City Airport which operates three times a week increasing to a daily service over the Christmas and NewYear period.

Luke Hayhoe, British Airways’ general manager commercial and customer said:  “British Airways has enjoyed a very successful first summer at Stansted and we are delighted to launch Chambery, our first winter-only service offering skiers and winter sports enthusiasts a gateway to one of the best Alpine snow regions direct from their doorstep.”

Mats Sigurdson, Stansted’s Aviation Director, said: “It’s fantastic news for passengers that British Airways is launching an exciting new route to Chambery to serve the Alpine ski resorts of France. The announcement is a real vote of confidence in Stansted and recognition of the strong demand that exists across the region and will provide passengers with even more opportunities to fly from their local airport this winter.”

Source: British Airways.