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Pacific Coastal Airlines Announces New Service to Kamloops


January 20th, 2021

Richmond, BC – Pacific Coastal Airlines is pleased to announce a new non-stop service between Vancouver International Airport South Terminal (YVR) and Kamloops Airport (YKA) effective Tuesday, February 9, 2021.

pacific-coastal-airlines-b1900-aircraft- Beech 1900D Aircraft (Courtesy of Pacific Coastal Airlines)

The 50-minute flight will operate 6 days a week between Vancouver and Kamloops. Flights will be offered Sunday to Friday on the 19-passenger pressurized turboprop Beech 1900D aircraft. The 1900D offers comfortable seating, 6-foot cabin height, and generous cargo capacity.

Customers can also benefit from convenient connecting flight options to reach other communities in British Columbia such as Victoria, B.C.

Vancouver to Kamloops Sunday to Friday #1205 2:35 p.m. 3:25 p.m. February 9, 2021
Kamloops to Vancouver Sunday to Friday #1206 3:55 p.m. 4:45 p.m. February 9, 2021

“We want to ensure that the community of Kamloops maintains air service to Vancouver to support the movement of essential workers, time-sensitive cargo, and assist those travelling for medical appointments at this time,” said Johnathan Richardson, Vice President of Commercial Services. “Pacific Coastal Airlines is proud to expand the destinations we serve in the Thompson Okanagan region and we will deliver reliable, convenient, and affordable flights that customers value.”

“Kamloops Airport is pleased to welcome Pacific Coastal Airlines to our airport and our community. Passengers using this important Kamloops-Vancouver service can expect a safe and healthy experience both at the airport and on board with this valued airline partner,” said Ed Ratuski, Managing Director, Kamloops Airport.

“We are delighted that Pacific Coastal Airlines will become our newest service partner at YKA.  I encourage local residents to make use of this important connection to Vancouver for all their essential travel needs during this pandemic period and beyond,” said Mayor Ken Christian.

Introductory fares are now on sale as low as $150 one-way, per passenger (inclusive of fees, surcharges, and tax). To book this new service visit or speak to your travel agent.

Pacific Coastal Airlines offers air cargo service to 17 destinations throughout their network to transport time-sensitive cargo. With various levels of shipping priority, they offer shipping solutions tailored to customer requirements at competitive rates.

Pacific Coastal Airlines has also adopted additional safety measures to ensure the health and wellbeing of staff and customers. The measures include enhanced aircraft sanitation practices, physical distancing at airport facilities, reduced contact points, and the requirement for all customers to travel with a face mask and answer health check questions before boarding. Learn more about the additional safety measures online.

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Government of Canada announces agreement with Government of Ontario to support essential air access to remote communities

Transport Canada

OTTAWA, Jan. 21, 2021 /CNW/ – The COVID-19 pandemic is having a significant impact on remote communities that depend on small air carriers for essential goods, services, and for access in and out of the community. As the pandemic continues to evolve, the Government of Canada is working with partners, including provincial and territorial governments, Indigenous partners, and the air industry to address the unique needs of these communities.

Today, the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Omar Alghabra, announced a new agreement with the Government of Ontario to support essential air access to remote communities.

The Government of Canada is contributing up to $11,134,000 for air services to remote communities to cover the period of July 1 to December 31, 2020. The Government of Ontario is investing $14.2 million to operate remote airports in 2020/21, including an additional $4 million this year to ensure continued safe operations during the pandemic.

Under this agreement, the Government of Ontario will allocate funding to air operators to ensure the continued supply of food, medical supplies, and other essential goods and services to these communities.


“While we continue to work together to limit the spread of COVID-19, we must also ensure remote communities continue to have the air connectivity they need for essential goods and services, travel and business. This agreement with the Government of Ontario will allow for reliable air services to keep remote communities in Ontario connected to the rest of the country.”

The Honourable Omar Alghabra
Minister of Transport

“Ontario’s small air carriers play an essential role in connecting northern and remote communities with goods and critical services. Today’s announcement builds on our government’s ongoing investment and support through our remote and northern airports program, demonstrating our continued commitment to supporting communities in Northern Ontario during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.”

The Honourable Caroline Mulroney
Minister of Transportation
Government of Ontario

“Small air carriers provide remote northern First Nations communities with a vital connection to critical supplies and essential services, including health care. This funding will help ensure the unique and immediate needs of these communities are continuously met during COVID-19.”

The Honourable Greg Rickford
Minister of Indigenous Affairs
Government of Ontario

Quick facts

  • Additional funding could be provided and will depend on the needs of communities and the pace of recovery of air travel into remote communities.
  • Remote communities are those that rely on air service as the only year-round mode of transportation.
  • There are 34 remote communities in Northern Ontario, 28 of which do not have year-round road access and rely on small commercial air carriers for essential services and goods..
  • Some communities may have limited access to seasonal ice roads or long and unreliable gravel roads.

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West Wind Aviation, Transwest Air to fly under new name

From Saskatoon StarPhoenix – link to source story

The two carriers will rebrand themselves under a single banner as Rise Air.

Saskatoon StarPhoenix  •  Jan 22, 2021

WestWindAviation.jpeg?quality=90&strip=a A member of the ground crew personnel readies a West Wind Aviation plane at the Shell Aero Centre for a flight to Saskatoon. PHOTO BY DON HEALY /Regina Leader-Post

The two air carriers that serve northern Saskatchewan will take on a new name and logo amid a consolidation of their businesses.

West Wind Aviation and Transwest Air already shared a parent company in West Wind Aviation Group. A media release from Transwest Air announced that the two companies will rebrand as Rise Air, pending regulatory approvals, and will no longer have separate operating certificates.

Outgoing President and CEO Stephen Smith was quoted in the media release announcing the rebrand saying the new name was picked from employee submissions, with the new logo also drawn up by a worker at the company.

The company previously announced that Smith would be replaced as President and CEO by Derek Nice effective Feb. 1.  Smith will stay on as chairman of the company’s board of directors.

Nice will take over as CEO, having previously served in high-level positions with air carriers based in Quebec, and having most recently served as managing director and CEO of Air Vanuatu.

The rebranding of West Wind and Transwest planes and other equipment to the new Rise Air colours and logo is expected to happen gradually. In the release, Smith said the company wants to keep costs down, so expects to swap out the logos “organically” as things need replacing.

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Physics takes over, a void is  / was there to fill:

Cape Breton aviation company hopes to fill void in the sky

From CBC News – link to source story

With Air Canada and WestJet no longer flying into Sydney airport, Celtic Air Services is ramping up charters

Tom Ayers · CBC News · Posted: Feb 12, 2021

dave-morgan-celtic-air.jpg Celtic Air Services president Dave Morgan says with the major airlines scaling back flights in Atlantic Canada, now is the time to launch an airplane charter service in Cape Breton. (Brent Kelloway/CBC)

A Cape Breton company is hoping to take advantage of a market opportunity after two major airlines scaled back scheduled flights in Atlantic Canada.

Celtic Air Services took over operations at the Allan J. MacEachen Airport in Port Hawkesbury, N.S., in 2017 and began offering helicopter tours in the region two years later.

The company recently bought a Quebec-based airplane charter business to add to its growing list of services.

“The major airlines pulling out of a lot of spots and cutting down on their regional flights definitely played into our hands,” said Celtic Air president Dave Morgan. “Definitely good luck and good timing.”

WestJet suspended many flights last fall and Air Canada soon followed suit. Both cited lack of demand as passenger traffic dropped during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since January, neither airline has flown out of the J.A. Douglas McCurdy Sydney Airport.

celtic-air-axair-plane.jpg Last summer, Celtic Air Services bought AxAir Aviation of Quebec, which comes with three full-time staff and a Cessna airplane that seats up to five passengers. (Brent Kelloway/CBC)

Morgan said he had always planned to add airplane charters to his business, but the lack of scheduled flights in the region created an opening he couldn’t pass up.

 “We’re a Cape Breton company so for now, we’re eyeing up Cape Breton airports, be it Sydney and Hawkesbury for now,” he said.

“In the summer, we can get into some of the smaller airports, as well.”

Celtic Air has nine employees. Last summer, the company bought AxAir Aviation, which comes with three full-time employees and a Cessna airplane that seats five passengers.

Morgan said the pandemic has slowed his business plans a little. Pilots had to go to the United States for training on flight simulators and they are now finishing ground school at the Port Hawkesbury airport.

The plane arrived in Cape Breton on Thursday and Morgan said he hopes to be up and running in a month.

He said the market opportunity already exists and he expects to be flying into northern Labrador, Quebec, Ontario, Atlantic Canada and the eastern U.S.

Already planning growth

“Right now, there’s huge troubles for folks that work away and folks that work throughout Atlantic Canada,” said Morgan.

“The drive from Sydney to Saint John, New Brunswick, is a long one for an engineering firm that’s sending workers back and forth on a project each week, and without connectivity from the airlines, we think the charter air is going to be an option for them.”

Morgan said he’s already planning to add another plane and more pilots as business takes off.

“The goal is definitely to add to the fleet and consider where the market leads us as we go. We definitely think that it’s going to be a bigger plane next,” he said.


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Medicine Hat airport loses commercial flight activity — for now


Facility remains open for flight school, charter planes

CBC News · Posted: Apr 05, 2021 10:42 AM MT | Last Updated: 34 minutes ago
The Medicine Hat Regional Airport has gone quiet after both Air Canada, and now Westjet have pulled commercial flights temporarily. (City of Medicine Hat)

The Medicine Hat Regional Airport will no longer have any commercial flight activity, after two of its airlines pulled flights temporarily.

WestJet's last flight was a week ago and Air Canada pulled its domestic flights in March of last year.


Airport manager Jeff Huntus says he is disappointed but not surprised. 

"To put it in perspective, we did in 2019, 75,000 passengers. So far in 2021, we've done about 200 passengers," Huntus said. "If we continue to fly empty airplanes, airlines go bankrupt."

WestJet pulled its flights from the airport last week but said they will return by June. 

There has been no word on when Air Canada will resume service to the southeastern Alberta city.

Huntus said it is easier to come back from suspended flights, than from commercial air bankruptcies.

"People understand why it's happening," he said. "But I think there is a great deal of pent-up demand and when things do turn around, I'm looking forward to a pretty significant increase in activity."

Airport remains active

The airport will remain open and active. Huntus said it plays a big role in the community, even during the quiet days of the pandemic.

"There's other activity. There's still private pilots and recreational aviation, corporate aircraft, charters, businessmen and women flying in from across Canada to conduct business," he said.

Medicine Hat is a medevac hub for southern Alberta.


The airport is also used by the Super T Aviation flight school, which is accepting new students, owner Terri Super said.

While it may be a tough time to think about getting into aviation, Super said she predicts charter flights becoming more popular.

"I think we will see more expansion of charter over the next little while, people can get on a charter aircraft and be in their own cohort."

With files from Helen Pike and Natalie Valleau

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$5 million to Air Tunilik to support and improve air service north of the 49th parallel

QUÉBEC, April 8, 2021 /CNW Telbec/ – The Minister of Tourism, Caroline Proulx, is pleased to announce the allocation of $5 million of financial assistance to Air Tunilik in order to support its expansion project, which will ensure better air services for tourists wishing to visit northern Québec.

The Minister made the announcement today, accompanied by the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Côte-Nord region, Jonatan Julien, and the President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Tunilik, Simon Contant. On the same occasion, the two Ministers announced $8 million of support for the creation of an incubator-accelerator, which will have the objective of stimulating tourism projects north of the 49th parallel.

The Air Tunilik project involves the acquisition of several assets of Location Air Saguenay, which is no longer in service since 2019, to maintain tourism aviation activities and increase traffic in the Nord-du-Québec and Côte-Nord regions. It will contribute to structuring the tourism offering by ensuring tourist transportation to the attractions of these regions.

The financial assistance is granted under the Programme d’appui au développement des attraits touristiques (PADAT), managed by Investissement Québec. More specifically, an amount of $2 million is allocated in the form of a grant and $3 million in the form of a loan.  The total cost of the project is valued at over $10 million.

“I am delighted with this project, which will have positive effects for the Côte-Nord and Nord-du-Québec tourism industry. It will help increase the number of visitors and overnight stays, as well as tourism revenues, by giving access to these more remote regions.  Air Tunilik will have the potential to bring clientele to the existing local tourism businesses and entrepreneurs, who will benefit from the support of the incubator-accelerator for tourism projects north of the 49th parallel. This is excellent news for tourism development in these regions. ” 

Caroline Proulx, Minister of Tourism 

“Improving access to remote regions is part of our Government’s priorities. That’s why I’m delighted with this investment, which will ensure an air link to the regions north of the 49th parallel.. This project is perfectly consistent with the 2020-2023 Northern Action Plan, which has the specific aim of supporting tourism development so that northern communities benefit from its effects.  “

Jonatan Julien, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources and Minister responsible for the Côte-Nord region

“I am especially happy for my fellow citizens of the Nord-du-Québec region. They will benefit from a greater influx of tourists thanks to this Air Tunilik development project. Having reliable air service is essential for this region’s tourism sector. This is very good news for the economic expansion of the region and Québec! “

Pierre Dufour, Minister of Forests, Wildlife and Parks and Minister responsible for the Abitibi-Témiscamingue and Nord-du-Québec regions

“With over fifty years of experience and now operating twelve float panes, ski planes and wheeled planes, Air Tunilik becomes the leading bush plane operator in Québec and one of the biggest in North America.  Our bases of operations cover all of North-Central Québec, from James Bay to the Lower North Shore. Over the years, we have established many collaborations with outfitters, vacationers and Indigenous communities to make Québec’s territory more safely accessible to everyone wishing to have access to it.  “

Simon Contant, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Tunilik


  • Here are some water bases used by Air Tunilik: Manic-5, Sept-Îles, Havre-Saint-Pierre, Natashquan, Wabush, Caniapiscau, Baie-Comeau, Mirage and Waskaganish outfitters. The company plans to offer its services within a 200 km radius of the water bases.
  • Air Tunilik plans to develop new water bases and have more aircraft in operation, with the goal of increasing its passenger traffic from 1,000 people in 2019 to over 13,000 in 2022. This expansion project should also allow it to increase its number of employees from 3 to 43 by 2022.
  • The PADAT, managed by Investissement Québec on behalf of the Gouvernement du Québec, pursues the following objectives:
    • Encourage private investments for the benefit of renewal of the tourism offering in Québec.
    • Ensure the growth of successful companies in the Québec tourism sector.
    • Stimulate the regional economy through job creation, an increase in the number of visitors and tourism revenue growth.
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Canada’s PAL Airlines to expand to 11 cities this summer

By Jon Hemmerdinger7 April 2021


Canadian regional carrier PAL Airlines will expand its network this summer to include 11 new destinations in eastern Canada.

The expansion comes as Canada’s airlines eye a potential summer rebound in air travel demand.

PAL, which operates De Havilland Canada Dash 8 turboprops, will this summer add flights to Halifax and Sydney in Nova Scotia, and to Saint John, Fredericton and Bathurst in New Brunswick, the airline tells FlightGlobal.

PAL Airlines Dash

Source: PAL Airlines

A PAL Airlines De Havilland Canada Dash 8 turboprop

The expansion will also see PAL add service to Ottawa in Ontario and Charlottetown on Prince Edward Island. Additionally, it will begin flying to four cities in Quebec: Les Iles de la Madeleine, Gaspe, Baie-Comeau and Val-d’Or.

The Fredericton routes will include flights to Deer Lake, and onward to St John’s, and to Ottawa and Halifax, the Fredericton airport says on 7 April.

WestJet has also announced a planned expansion. That carrier intends to restore flights to several eastern Canadian cities in late June, meaning it would again serve all the cities it did prior to the pandemic.

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PAL Airlines to service Fredericton with direct flights to Newfoundland, Ottawa, Halifax

The announcement marks the first-ever offering of direct flights from Fredericton to Newfoundland

Isabelle Leger · CBC News · Posted: Apr 07, 2021 5:16 PM AT | Last Updated: April 7
PAL Airlines will offer flights from Fredericton to Deer Lake and St. John's Newfoundland, starting May 31. (PAL Airlines)

A Newfoundland-based airline will service the Fredericton International Airport with direct flights to Deer Lake and St. John's, starting May 31.

PAL Airlines announced Wednesday it would offer three weekly flights to both cities, marking the first time Fredericton has ever had direct flights to Newfoundland.  


"This is a long time coming… we're confident there's a demand for this," said Fredericton Airport CEO Johanne Gallant. 

"We're really pleased to see that PAL Airlines is willing to take this on."

Johanne Gallant is the CEO of the Fredericton International Airport. (Submitted by Fredericton International Airport)

The airline will also offer three weekly direct flights from Fredericton to Ottawa and Halifax, beginning Aug. 2. 

Gallant said the addition of services is a sign of recovery for the aviation industry, which was paralyzed by pandemic restrictions. 

With plans for the Atlantic Bubble to open on April 19, she said the flights to Newfoundland and Halifax will provide New Brunswickers access to some prime tourist destinations. 

"We really see, for the summer, great leisure opportunities… people from here wanting to do something different and Newfoundland has such a great tourism product," said Gallant.  

The Fredericton airport just underwent a major renovation. (JAMES WEST PHOTOGRAPHY)

She said the flights to Halifax will fill the demand for corporate flyers and students, which was left unserviced when Air Canada halted all flights from the airport in January.

No one from PAL Airlines was available for an interview with CBC News on Wednesday, but the company provided an emailed statement. 

"We understand giving people the ability to get into and out of the region reliably and efficiently is going to be essential to the post-pandemic recovery," said the statement.

'We're ready for these new airlines'

The Fredericton airport completed a large terminal expansion this month, which Gallant says made room for more carriers. 

Fredericton International Airport completed the renovations in early 2021. (Submitted by Fredericton International Airport)

"Definitely having a brand-new terminal with lots of space for social distancing, that helps," she said.   

"With the terminal expansion project, we're ready for these new airlines."

Air Canada and WestJet have announced their flights will resume at the airport this summer. 

Gallant said the airport is still waiting for an official response from Porter Airlines on whether it will restore its services from pre-pandemic.

She said it's also hopeful that Sunwing will be able to offer vacation getaway packages from Fredericton by next winter



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Newfoundland-based PAL Airlines to fly out of Sydney

Premium content
Published: 16 hours ago
Updated: 13 hours ago
The J.A. Douglas McCurdy Sydney Airport is shown in this file photo. Sharon Montgomery-Dupe/Cape Breton Post

There is a new airline coming to town.

Mike MacKinnon, CEO of the J.A. Douglas McCurdy Sydney Airport, announced in a tweet Wednesday afternoon that PAL Airlines will be flying out of Sydney as of May 31.

The regional air carrier will be offering three Sydney-to-Halifax flights a week.

A source at the St. John's, N.L.-based airline told the Cape Breton Post it will also be adding air service to Charlottetown, P.E.I., as well as Saint John, Fredericton and Bathurst, N.B.

PAL Airlines currently offers flights to Moncton as well as Montreal and several other cities in Quebec.

Additional cities in Quebec are also slated to be added to the carrier’s flight service.

According to the company's website, the airline made its start in Newfoundland and Labrador 45 years ago. Originally a renowned Atlantic Canadian flight school, it has grown into one of the largest independent airlines operating in Eastern Canada. Their core services now include scheduled flights, air charter and air cargo services.

The airline says over the years it has earned a solid reputation for safety and service and has received globally recognized awards for reliability.

There have not been any flights operating out of the Sydney airport since WestJet temporarily suspended service in November and Air Canada in January.

In March, WestJet announced it would be resuming flights in June and Air Canada is currently taking bookings for flights scheduled to resume at the same time.

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Canadian Transportation Agency

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Determination No. A-2021-51

April 6, 2021

APPLICATION by West Coast Air Ltd. carrying on business as Harbour Air (Licensee) for suspension of Licence No. 962204.

Case number: 

The Licensee is licensed to operate a domestic service, small aircraft. The Licensee has requested the suspension of its licence.

Pursuant to paragraph 63(2)(b) of the Canada Transportation Act, SC 1996, c 10 (CTA), the Canadian Transportation Agency suspends the licence.

The licence will be automatically reinstated when the Manager, Air Licensing and Charters Division is satisfied that the requirements of subparagraphs 61(a)(ii) and (iii) of the CTA are met and provided that the other requirements of paragraph 61(a) of the CTA continue to be met.

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