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Decades-old regional Air Canada route from Sydney to Halifax cancelled

From Global News – link to story

By Aya Al-Hakim  Global News ~ October 30, 2020

Air Canada’s route from Sydney to Halifax is cancelled for November. Air Canada’s route from Sydney to Halifax is cancelled for November. Sydney Airport/Twitter

Sydney Airport in Cape Breton announced “disappointing news” on Friday that Air Canada’s route from Sydney to Halifax has been cancelled for November.

According to the airport, the route has been in place since 1942.

“COVID-19 has taken a tremendous toll on our airport. We need to find safe ways to move forward before the damage done is irreparable,” the airport said in a tweet.

Halifax Stanfield International Airport also expressed disappointment over the cancellation.

“Our long-term connection to Sydney Airport has been cut, further unravelling our regional flight network which could take years to rebuild,” Stanfield airport said in a statement.

“We join our colleagues across in asking governments to support airports, their communities & aviation workers before it’s too late.”

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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I wonder what the loads were like.

Air Canada Rouge Returns to the Skies Today Français


NEWS PROVIDED BY

Air Canada 

Nov 02, 2020, 12:00 ET

 


MONTREAL, Nov. 2, 2020 /CNW/ - The departure of Air Canada flight AC1810 from Toronto to Cancun today marked the return of Air Canada Rouge to the skies.

"Air Canada Rouge remains an important part of our overall strategy in rebuilding Air Canada's global network. As leisure traffic resumes, we will progressively add Air Canada Rouge to select North American leisure markets from Eastern Canada," said Mark Galardo, Vice President, Network Planning and Alliances at Air Canada.

Air Canada Rouge flights are operated with narrow-body Airbus aircraft featuring a choice of Premium Rouge and Economy services. Customers travelling in the Premium Rouge cabin will be offered a complimentary, pre-packaged meal curated by celebrated Montreal chef Antonio Park with complimentary bar and beverage service. All customers onboard Rouge flights will have access to complementary in-flight entertainment that is streamed right to their personal smartphone or device of choice without the requirement to download an app. Premium Rouge customers will also be offered the complimentary use of sanitized iPads containing entertainment content.

All flights are operated using the Air Canada CleanCare+ suite of biosafety measures. Customers can collect and redeem Aeroplan points through Canada's leading loyalty program when travelling and eligible customers have access to priority check-in, Maple Leaf Lounges, priority boarding and other benefits.

More information about Air Canada Rouge flights can be found at: flyrouge.com

Air Canada CleanCare+, a leading biosafety program

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Coronavirus COVID-19 situation in Cancun

Last updated Nov 1, 2020.

The government of the state of Quintana Roo has announced last weekend that the Epidemiological Risk Assessment for the Mexican Caribbean will be in “yellow” throughout the state until November 1st. (This risk assessment is updated weekly).

For those of you visiting us from other countries, the Epidemiological Risk Assessment used in Mexico works on a color scale indicating different levels of risk for Covid-19 contagion. The 4 colors are: Red (total lockdown), Orange (small-scale partial reopening, this is where we have been for the last couple months), Yellow (medium-scale reopening) and Green (back to normal)

The constant and continuing decrease of cases in the state has given the authorities the reassurance they wanted to continue with the reopening of the Mexican Caribbean. In this new phase beaches and other outdoor activities are finally allowed to reopen with up to 60% capacity; the same limit now applies to hotels, restaurants and theme parks as well. Up to now most of these could only reopen to 30% of their capacity. It is worth mentioning that nightclubs, bars and other nightlife activities remain closed and will continue to be so for the foreseen future.

The following preventive measures will be in place in beaches during this phase of our reopening:

  • Maximum guest capacity will be 60%
  • Open from 9am to 5pm only
  • Controlled access: visitors must join in the entrance queue, keeping the minimum safe distance between other guests. In order to access the beach they will need to use anti-bacterial gel (provided here) and have a temperature of 37.5C or less (99.5 F)
  • At this time groups are limited to a maximum of 5 people
  • Food is not allowed

It is important to be aware that if we all do our part we will not only keep the Risk at yellow level, but eventually move it to green for a complete and safe reopening of the Mexican Caribbean and it’s many attractions. Visit us regularly for updates about Covid-19 in your favorite paradise destination.

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Determination No. A-2020-183

November 5, 2020
 

APPLICATION by Air Canada also carrying on business as Air Canada rouge and as Air Canada Cargo (Air Canada) to amend Condition No. 1 of Licence No. 110086 in order to operate a scheduled international service between Canada and Qatar using its own aircraft, pursuant to subsection 69(1) of the Canada Transportation Act, SC 1996, c 10 (CTA).

 
Case number: 
20-09484
 

On December 22, 2011, the Canadian Transportation Agency granted Air Canada the authorization, in Decision No. 442-A-2011, to operate its scheduled international service, large aircraft, through code sharing only, on licensed routes between Canada and Qatar in accordance with the Arrangement between the Government of Canada and the Government of the State of Qatar set out in an Agreed Minute signed on October 28, 2010 (Arrangement).

Air Canada now wishes to operate its scheduled international service with its own aircraft. The proposed start-up date is December 15, 2020.

Air Canada holds valid insurance and the Canadian Foreign Air Operator Certificate for the proposed operation.

Condition No. 1 of the licence No. 110086 now reads:

The Licensee is authorized to operate a scheduled international service on the routes set out in the Arrangement.

https://www.otc-cta.gc.ca/node/569674

It will be interesting to see how this evolves ..... following is the current alert from the CDC

Quote

https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/warning/coronavirus-qatar  

Warning – Level 3, COVID-19 risk in Qatar is high

Key Points

 
  • CDC recommends travelers avoid all nonessential international travel to Qatar. Travelers at increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19 should consider postponing all travel, including essential travel, to Qatar.
  • COVID-19 risk in Qatar is high.
  • If you get sick in Qatar and need medical care, resources may be limited.
  • Check with the Office of Foreign Affairs or Ministry of Health of Qatar or the US Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs, Country Information page for details about entry requirements and restrictions for arriving travelers, such as mandatory testing or quarantine.
  • Local policies at your destination may require you to be tested for COVID-19 before you are allowed to enter the country. If you test positive on arrival, you may be required to isolate for a period of time. You may even be prevented from returning to the United States, as scheduled. You might consider getting tested before your trip. If so, see Testing for COVID-19 webpage for more information.

 

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Air Canada launches transformed Aeroplan program with additional benefits and richest-ever bonus offers Français


NEWS PROVIDED BY

Air Canada 

Nov 10, 2020, 07:00 ET

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  • All members maintain their existing Aeroplan numbers, and all Aeroplan points honoured on a one-to-one basis
     
  • For Aeroplan credit cards issued by TD, American Express and CIBC, new cardholders will earn a buy-one-get-one Buddy Pass to fly someone along – only paying the taxes and third-party charges on the second ticket; this offer is the first of its kind in Canada
     
  • No blackout dates as every seat for sale on every Air Canada flight will be available for flight rewards with Aeroplan points
     
  • Travel more and travel better with no cash surcharges and Points + Cash options on all Air Canada itineraries
     
  • The first loyalty program in Canada purpose-built for families, now offering points and benefits sharing

MONTREAL, Nov. 10, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada said today that its transformed Aeroplan loyalty program is now live. Existing Aeroplan accounts and membership numbers have automatically moved to the new program. Aeroplan miles are now "Aeroplan points," with prior balances honoured on a one-to-one basis. Exciting welcome bonuses are also available for new Aeroplan credit card accounts from our card partners TD, American Express and CIBC. All current Aeroplan credit cardholders continue to earn points as normal, and they now have access to a range of new benefits.  

The transformed Aeroplan program, designed to put the member experience first, comes with personalized, flexible and easy-to-use features. It also offers exceptional value allowing members to travel more and travel better.  Highlights of the transformed program include:

  • Improved Value on Flight Rewards - Aeroplan offers flight rewards to hundreds of destinations worldwide on Air Canada and over 35 partner airlines. The transformed Aeroplan program offers predictable pricing, with access to every seat available on Air Canada flights with no cash surcharges, plus the option to pay with Points + Cash. Members also now have an integrated booking experience, with the ability to search and redeem for flight rewards at aircanada.com or on the Air Canada app.
  • More Options for More Members - Aeroplan has something for everyone and will make travel better with new features such as: Aeroplan Family Sharing, so that members can combine points with other family members to reach rewards faster; earn points with every Air Canada flight booked, including Economy Basic Fares; the ability to use points for extra travel perks such as upgrades and in-flight Wi-Fi; and expanded merchandise rewards.
  • Air Canada Altitude is becoming Aeroplan Elite Status - Aeroplan will continue to offer five Elite Status levels: Aeroplan 25K, 35K, 50K, 75K, and Super Elite. All of the most popular Elite Status benefits remain, along with some new, first-in-market features, including Priority Rewards, Status Pass and Everyday Status Qualification. Learn more at www.aircanada.com/elite.

"Despite the unprecedented impact of COVID-19 on the airline industry, Air Canada will continue to innovate and anticipate the needs of our customers. Our transformed loyalty program is industry-leading on many levels, including offering a peerless user experience, value and convenience. I fully expect that this important initiative will give us a major competitive advantage in attracting and retaining customers as the industry recovers from the pandemic," said Calin Rovinescu, President and Chief Executive Officer of Air Canada. 

"Canadians deserve more from their Loyalty programs, plain and simple. The transformed Aeroplan is more rewarding, easier to use, and flexible," said Mark Nasr, Vice President, Loyalty and eCommerce at Air Canada. "Thank you to the over 36,000 consumers and employees whose feedback, ideas, and guidance drove every feature. Importantly, this relaunch isn't our final destination; stay-tuned for dozens of additional features, rewarding benefits, and new partners joining the program in the coming months."

All-New Aeroplan Credit Cards

The all-new range of Aeroplan co-branded credit cards issued by TD, American Express and CIBC are the only ones in Canada offering extensive Air Canada travel perks and will help members earn rewards more quickly:

Entry credit cards

    • Preferred pricing on flight rewards means primary cardholders can redeem flights for fewer points more often.
    • Cardholders earn bonus points for spending in popular categories, and earn even more when they spend directly with Air Canada (through the app, at aircanada.com or vacations.aircanada.com) and pay with their Aeroplan credit card.
    • Plus, as a primary cardholder, for as long as you hold an Aeroplan credit card, your Aeroplan points never expire.

Core credit cards 

    • Eligible cardholders enjoy the above benefits, plus a free first checked bag when travelling on Air Canada flights – whether the ticket was redeemed with points or purchased with cash.
    • This benefit also applies to all secondary cardholders and up to eight companions travelling on the same reservation.

Premium credit cards 

    • Cardholders enjoy the above benefits, plus exciting new airport perks including Maple Leaf Lounge and Air Canada Café access, priority boarding, and priority check-in.
    • Free first checked bag, lounge access, and priority airport benefits are also available for eligible secondary cardholders travelling on their own – an industry first.
    • Aeroplan Elite Status members will enjoy unique benefits such as rollover eUpgrade Credits and Status Qualifying Miles, along with priority upgrade clearance at the airport.

Exceptional Welcome Bonus Offers

Aeroplan Members can take advantage of valuable welcome bonus offers from TD, American Express and CIBC.  Plus, on eligible cards, members earn a Buddy Pass for a buy-one-get-one ticket anywhere Air Canada flies in North America – including Mexico and Hawaii. After first buying an economy class ticket, on the second they pay only the government taxes and third-party charges.

Learn more about Air Canada travel benefits for Aeroplan credit card holders, visit: aircanada.com/cards

For more information on the new features, or to enroll in the program, visit: www.aircanada.com/aeroplan.  

About Air Canada

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TD launches refreshed TD Aeroplan® Visa Credit Cards and brews up unique offers for current and future cardholders Français


NEWS PROVIDED BY

TD Bank Group 

Nov 10, 2020, 07:05 ET

 


Available now, TD's suite of cards delivers extensive travel perks and accelerated points at Air Canada and Starbucks amongst other offers

TORONTO, Nov. 10, 2020 /CNW/ - TD is pleased to announce that its refreshed portfolio of TD Aeroplan® Visa* Credit Cards are now available. From accelerated earning, to family sharing and travel perks, the transformed suite of cards puts TD customers first. Current TD Aeroplan Visa cardholders will automatically get access to the updated card benefits and Aeroplan program.

"We're thrilled to deliver incredible new benefits and enhanced value to our existing TD Aeroplan Visa cardholders, which they can start earning today even if their immediate travel plans are still on hold," explains Katy Boshart, Senior Vice President, Canadian Credit Cards at TD. "And since points never expire, customers can continue to accumulate rewards and redeem them at their convenience both now and in the future."

And while it continues to be a challenging environment for Canadians planning travel in the short-term, TD Aeroplan cardholders can take advantage of many exciting benefits, right away.

Accelerated earning at Starbucks

Unique to TD cardholders, Aeroplan members will earn 50% more Aeroplan points on Starbucks purchases charged to their TD Aeroplan credit card for one year effective November 8th. All purchases made through the Starbucks app or in-store at participating Starbucks locations will be eligible for the exclusive credit card accelerator and, together with base earn, will receive:

  • TD Aeroplan® Visa Platinum: 1 Aeroplan point per $1 spent
  • TD Aeroplan® Visa Infinite: 1.5 Aeroplan points per $1 spent
  • TD Aeroplan® Visa Infinite Privilege: 2.25 Aeroplan points per $1 spent
  • TD Aeroplan® Visa Business: 2.25 Aeroplan points per $1 spent

Travel is better shared

New TD Aeroplan Visa cardholders can take advantage of valuable Welcome Bonus offers, earning up to 50,000 Aeroplan points. Plus, a bonus Buddy pass is now available to new Infinite, Infinite Privilege and Business cardholders that scores customers a second ticket when an economy ticket is booked for anywhere Air Canada flies in North America – including Mexico and Hawaii. After first buying an economy class ticket, on the second they pay only the government taxes and third-party charges.

"From accelerated earning on your morning coffee at Starbucks, to benefits like Mobile Device Insurance, the refreshed suite of cards lets customers unlock huge value, even if they're staying close to home," says Boshart. "We also know that Canadians will love the ability to use their Bonus Buddy Pass and get the chance to share their future travel experiences with a friend or loved one."

Refreshed TD Aeroplan® Visa Credit Cards

TD Aeroplan cards are designed to help everyone share in better air travel experiences, offering expanded travel and insurance benefits for all cardholders. Adding to this, Aeroplan members can combine points with others in their household through Aeroplan Family Sharing to redeem for rewards sooner. TD Aeroplan Visa Infinite Privilege cardholders can also enhance their air travel experience with benefits such as free first checked bag, priority check-in and boarding and complimentary access to Maple Leaf Lounges and Air Canada Cafés across North America.

For more on the TD Aeroplan Credit Card portfolio, visit https://www.td.com/ca/en/personal-banking/products/credit-cards/aeroplan/

About TD Bank Group

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Air Canada Cancels 12 Airbus A220 And 10 737 MAX Orders

Air Canada lost over half a billion dollars in the last quarter, and despite lowering cash burn to around $7 million a day, it is expecting a tough winter ahead. As part of its efforts to improve its position, it has deferred some new narrowbody aircraft deliveries. More significantly, it has also canceled orders for 10 Boeing 737 MAX and 12 Airbus A220s entirely.

 

Deferrals and cancellations

Air Canada’s third-quarter results are in and are as gloomy as is to be expected. Overall, the airline reported a net loss of CA$685 million ($526 million) for the quarter. It was an 86% drop from its performance last year, and has led the airline to take some significant steps to improve its liquidity position.

The airline’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Calin Rovinescu, noted that both Air Canada and its subsidiary Rouge will come back from the crisis with much smaller fleets. Overall, 79 aircraft across the two fleets will be taking early retirement. Additionally, orders with both Airbus and Boeing have been canceled or deferred. He said,

 

“We are deferring delivery of new Boeing 737-8 and Airbus A220 aircraft scheduled for delivery in 2021 and 2022 and cancelling 10 Boeing 737-8s and 12 Airbus A220s, representing about 40 per cent of the remaining scheduled deliveries.”

Calling it the 737-8, the MAX cancellations make up about 40% of the remaining order. Photo: Getty Images

Rovinescu noted that, despite modifying these orders, the airline sees these aircraft as still being core to its narrowbody fleet. His words suggest a commitment to the types remains, even though the order book has shrunk. He concluded,

“Through this fleet restructuring and other capital reduction initiatives, we have successfully lowered total projected capital expenditures by about $3.0 billion over the 2020 to 2023 period compared to our total projected capital expenditures at the end of 2019.”

Fighting for survival

These aircraft deferrals and order cancellations are part of a suite of measures that Air Canada is taking to improve its liquidity position. Since March, the airline says it has secured an additional CA$6 billion ($4.6bn) in additional liquidity through what the CEO calls ‘the painful steps’ of laying off 20,000 jobs and reducing capacity by more than 80% in the quarter.

It has been working to trim costs too, and through the third quarter said it had driven down its cash burn to CA$9 million per day ($7 million), bettering the projected burn rate of CA$15 – 17 million a day ($11.5 – 13 million). However, it warned that, in quarter four, it is still expected to burn through CA$12 – 14 million per day ($9 – 11 million) due to increases in end-of-lease payments and higher expenditure related to unavoidable A220 deliveries.

 

Rovinescu hit out at the mandatory quarantining of passengers arriving in Canada, citing the airline’s own testing trial in partnership with Toronto-Pearson Airport as evidence of viable alternatives. He said,

“Amongst the various science-based measures we have been advocating, testing at airports is by far the most significant, as demonstrated by the McMaster HealthLabs’ study of international travellers arriving at Toronto-Pearson. It was reported to be the largest-ever study of its kind and preliminary results clearly confirm safe alternatives exist to a mandatory 14-day quarantine, which is both stifling demand and frustrating travellers who are willing to be tested.”

Despite the challenges facing the airline, it remains focused on the future. The results detailed its COVID-19 Mitigation and Recovery Plan, which wraps in elements of customer service and safety along with management of capacity, network, and ongoing financial measures. It says it is proceeding with the proposed acquisition of Transat A.T. Inc and is continuing discussions with the Government of Canada on both travel restrictions and further financial support for the industry.

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More flights coming but as with the WestJet announcements some travel to Mexico is offered and when you consider they have over 1million cases and 100 thousand deaths, those destinations will likely not be very popular.  https://canadianaviationnews.wordpress.com/2020/11/15/air-canada-to-resume-five-international-services-from-calgary-in-dec-2020/

Air Canada to resume five international services from Calgary in Dec-2020
15 November 2020Canadian Aviation News
From Corporate Travel Community – link to source story


Air Canada plans to resume the following international services, as per a 09-Nov-2020 GDS inventory and timetable display:

Calgary–Cancun: Twice weekly from 19-Dec-2020 with A319;
Calgary-Houston George Bush: Daily from 01-Dec-2020 with Bombardier CRJ900;
Calgary-Maui: Weekly from 04-Dec-2020, increasing to four times weekly from 20-Dec-2020, operating with Boeing 787-9;
Calgary–Phoenix: Twice weekly from 03-Dec-2020, increasing to five times weekly from 18-Dec-2020 to 10-Jan-2021, then three times weekly from 11-Jan-2021 to 10-Feb-2021 and five times weekly from 11-Feb-2021. Service will operate with A319;
Calgary–Puerto Vallarta: Twice weekly from 18-Dec-2020 with A319.

 

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Air Canada Welcomes Hawaii's Science-Based Initiative Eliminating Quarantine for Canadians Going to Hawaii


NEWS PROVIDED BY

Air Canada 

Nov 19, 2020, 20:34 ET


  • Non-stop flights from Vancouver-Hawaii begin Dec. 17; Calgary-Maui begins Dec. 18

MONTREAL, Nov. 19, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today welcomed Hawaii's announcement that Canadians are now eligible to be exempt from the state's mandatory 14-day quarantine on arrival in the Hawaiian Islands via a pre-travel testing process.

"We applaud Governor Ige's announcement that Hawaii's science-based, pre-travel testing initiative is now available for Canadians to be exempt from mandatory quarantine requirements on arrival in Hawaii, and we are very pleased Air Canada is a preferred airline in Hawaii's Safe Travels Program.  We have long advocated for safe and science-based strategies over blanket quarantines to enable a safe and secure resumption of air travel. Air Canada's industry-leading Air Canada CleanCare+ suite of biosafety standards and preventative measures across its operations means customers can always book and travel Air Canada with confidence," said Timothy Liu, Managing Director, Sales Planning at Air Canada.

Additional details about Hawaii's pre-travel testing requirements for customers will be available shortly on aircanada.com.

Air Canada's services to Hawaii from Vancouver begins on Dec. 17 with four weekly flights to Maui and three weekly flights to Honolulu. From Calgary, flights to Maui begin Dec. 18 and are planned to ramp up to multiple times a week. 

Customers travelling are advised to check applicable websites including those of their final destination and the Government of Canada website to review any entry document or quarantine requirements, which may evolve and change without notice.  Alberta residents may be eligible to participate in the joint Government of Canada and Government of Alberta pilot project to test arriving residents as part of reducing quarantine.

About Air Canada

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Air Canada receives IATA Environmental Assessment Stage 2 certification

From eTurboNews – link to source story

 Harry S. Johnson November 21, 2020

Air Canada receives IATA Environmental Assessment Stage 2 certification

As part of Air Canada’s commitment to operating in a sustainable and responsible manner, the airline recently undertook a rigorous certification process with the International Air Transport Association to receive an industry-leading environmental certification, IEnvA Stage 2.

The IATA Environmental Assessment program (or IEnvA) is an Environmental Management System specifically developed for the airline sector, it demonstrates equivalency to the ISO 14001: 2015 environmental management systems standard. An EMS identifies the environmental aspects of an organization’s activities and manages its impacts; it sets the company’s environmental objectives, targets and performance indicators, and handles the compliance obligations through a structured, documented and continuous improvement approach. 

“Through IEnvA, Air Canada, as a global citizen, demonstrates the importance of environmental compliance and sustainability in its operations. It allows for an organized approach to environmental management, reporting and the mitigation of environmental impacts. This allows us to more formally integrate our existing environmental compliance activities and sustainability initiatives into Air Canada’s operations,” said Teresa Ehman, Senior Director of Environmental Affairs at Air Canada.

  • Environmental significance/risk rating criteria.
  • Environmental Management Plans to address environmental issues which include:
    • Environmental objectives and associated plans to achieve those objectives.
    • Control mechanisms to achieve and maintain environmental compliance and performance.
  • Environmental training programs.
  • Environmental communications plans.
  • Emergency response procedures.

Air Canada takes concrete steps in the fight against the illicit trafficking of wildlife

Through working towards the IEnvA certification, Air Canadaalso received IATA’s Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) certification, which takes concrete steps in the fight against the illicit trafficking of wildlife around the globe. Air Canada is also the first airline in North America to receive this certification.

Introduced last year by IATA, the IWT certification incorporates the 11 commitments of the United for Wildlife (UFW) Buckingham Palace Declaration, which Air Canada has signed, for airlines engaged in fighting the trade in illegal wildlife.

image.png.526032f12d6e5126b46db519ac6bbf32.png

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Air Canada Collaborates with Shoppers Drug Mart to Deliver a COVID-19 Testing Solution For Customers

air_canada_logo.jpg?w=1024
  • Pre-departure testing available as of Dec. 7 for Air Canada customers in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia
  • Canadian travellers will be exempt from 14-day quarantine in Hawaii with a negative test

MONTREAL, Nov. 27, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada is pleased to announce its collaboration with Shoppers Drug Mart, Canada’s leading pharmacy retailer, which will provide Air Canada customers with the opportunity to take a pre-departure COVID-19 RT-PCR test in order to comply with international travel requirements.

Beginning Dec. 7, eligible Air Canada customers can book and purchase a COVID-19 test at participating Shoppers Drug Mart locations in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia. Results are typically available within 24-48 hours.

“Many countries now require a pre-departure negative COVID-19 test and we are pleased to facilitate this process for our customers, making their travel experience easier and safer by recommending the RT-PCR test at select Shoppers Drug Mart locations. We believe that testing is one of the keys to protecting employees and customers, and an important step to safely reopen travel around the world, easing travel restrictions by providing alternative testing solutions in managing risk,” said Dr. Jim Chung, Air Canada’s Chief Medical Officer.

“Our stores and pharmacy teams are a convenient, trusted resource for Canadians. We want to continue to be a part of the solution as the country looks for ways to manage COVID-19. We’re pleased to work with Air Canada to make COVID-19 RT-PCR tests accessible to travellers, and to help customers plan their travel safely and with confidence,” said Ashesh Desai, Executive Vice President, Pharmacy at Shoppers Drug Mart.

This test will be available for customers flying to any destination requiring a negative COVID-19 test, including Hawaii and the Caribbean (namely, the Bahamas, Turks and Caicos, Antigua, Barbuda and St-Lucia).

Canadians are now eligible to be exempt from Hawaii’s mandatory 14-day quarantine on arrival in the Hawaiian Islands via a pre-travel testing process. Visit the Hawaiian government website for more details. https://travel.hawaii.gov/#/

Air Canada’s service to Hawaii from Vancouver begins on Dec. 17 and flights from Calgary start on Dec. 18.

Other testing options are also offered to our customers who are flying to Hawaii, including travellers from Quebec. For more details on the list of approved testing entities by the Hawaiian Government, visit aircanada.com/covid19testing.

Air Canada has been at the forefront of the airline industry in responding to COVID-19, including being among the first carriers globally to require customer face coverings onboard and the first airline in the Americas to check passengers’ temperatures prior to boarding. In May, it introduced a comprehensive program, called Air Canada CleanCare+, to apply industry leading biosafety meas

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IBM and Air Canada Partner to Transform the Aeroplan Loyalty Program

New cloud-based web and mobile experience offers Aeroplan members more personalization, flexibility, and intuitive design.

MONTREAL, Dec. 3, 2020 /CNW/ — IBM Canada today announced its collaboration with Air Canada, the country’s largest airline, on the recently launched Aeroplan program, which includes a new web and mobile digital experience, designed and built in partnership with IBM (NYSE: IBM).

Air Canada recently launched its Aeroplan program, which includes a new web and mobile digital experience designed and built in partnership with IBM. Air Canada recently launched its Aeroplan program, which includes a new web and mobile digital experience designed and built in partnership with IBM.

IBM iX, the business design arm of IBM Services, began this project with Air Canada in February 2020. With a combined team of IBM designers, developers and consultants, collaborating with colleagues from Air Canada’s Digital team, the group completely rebuilt and transformed the web and mobile interface, fully integrating Aeroplan into Air Canada’s digital properties. The result is a more personalized, flexible, and intuitive design, delivering a truly rewarding loyalty experience.

“Air Canada and IBM have a long history of collaboration on digital and advanced technologies to address pressing business challenges and increase customer satisfaction,” said Claude Guay, President, IBM Canada. “As the airline continues to innovate, we were pleased to co-create this smarter digital experience for its customers.” 

“IBM iX is a great partner, and we’re proud of their work to deliver the new Aeroplan digital experience,” said Mark Nasr, Vice President, Loyalty and eCommerce, Air Canada. “After speaking with over 35,000 consumers and employees, we benchmarked against loyalty programs from around the globe. The results were clear—members expected more from Aeroplan, and this led us to completely overhaul the digital experience and its underlying infrastructure. IBM seamlessly integrated their people into our joint Tech+Business Digital team, delivering the transformation with an agile approach. This work supported our efforts to build a truly responsive and flexible program, enabling Aeroplan members to travel more and travel better.”

The integration of web and mobile makes it easier than ever before for Aeroplan members to enroll, check their points transactions, view their Elite Status benefits, book flight rewards, and much more – delivering an improved loyalty experience for Air Canada travellers.  The solution is integrated with Air Canada’s cloud-based digital services to pull and connect historical and real-time data from key systems within the company. Air Canada’s channels can now provide a personalized and contextualized experience for customers. 

Air Canada and IBM iX used IBM Design Thinking and the IBM Garage Methodology, along with real customer input, to co-create the new user experience for the loyalty program. As well, user testing provided key input throughout the development cycle to make the mobile and web experience more engaging and intuitive

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YUL passengers will soon be offered rapid screening tests Français


NEWS PROVIDED BY

Aéroports de Montréal 

Dec 07, 2020, 10:00 ET


MONTRÉAL, Dec. 7, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ - ADM Aéroports de Montréal and Biron Health Group Inc. are launching a pilot project to test a new rapid screening process for COVID-19 on departures from YUL Montréal-Trudeau International Airport to destinations requiring a negative result medical certificate for admission to their territory. These antigenic tests will make it possible to perform certified and rapid tests within 15 minutes.

This new service will initially be offered by reservation to travellers whose final destination is metropolitan France and who are taking a flight served by Air Canada, the initial partner of the project, Air France, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines or Air Transat. Other destinations could be added to the pilot project. The screening will be carried out by Biron professionals in an area set aside for this purpose on the departures level of the airport terminal.

This initiative is part of a number of pilot projects already underway in the country, including the one conducted by Alberta and federal public health agencies at Calgary's airport designed to reduce the 14-day quarantine period imposed on travellers entering Canada. ADM is in discussions to eventually offer the same type of tests to arriving passengers.

The ADM and Biron Health Group Inc. pilot project is consistent with the recommendations of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and respects the guidelines of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) on the implementation of robust screening measures aimed at allowing for a safe recovery of the airline industry, without compromising the public health efforts made to date.

In summary 

  • The pilot project will start on December 15 and will last for an initial period of 8 weeks;
  • The test using a nasal swab will be minimally intrusive and offered at a cost of $149;
  • The antigenic test used by Biron is approved by Health Canada and recognized in France;
  • Tests are available by reservation only. Only passengers authorized to travel to France will be able to book an appointment;
  • Passengers authorized to travel to metropolitan France also have the option of going to a Biron service point, or to call the laboratory of their choice within 72 hours prior to their departure to obtain their negative screening certificate via a standard test (PCR) or will be required to be tested upon arrival in France at the airport;
  • All passengers participating in the pilot project will nevertheless need to continue to observe the mandatory quarantine period upon their return to Canada;
  • It is recommended that passengers check the travel restrictions in effect in their destination country. For more details on the terms and conditions of the project: https://yulsatisfaction.admtl.com/hc/en-ca/ 

Quotes

"The measures deployed as part of the Travel with Confidence program at YUL, such as taking temperatures and setting up health checkpoints at the three entrances to our terminal, have already proven to be effective. However, it is essential that further initiatives are put forward by airports, airlines and public health teams to ensure that travel is resumed. The pilot screening test project improves the procedures already in place and represents a decisive step in ensuring the safest possible travel for passengers. The industry must be innovative and adapt to a new reality, and ADM is proud to be contributing to this effort together with its partners." – Philippe Rainville, President and CEO of ADM Aéroports de Montréal.

"The pandemic has had unprecedented impacts on our lives, the Québec economy, and even the entire world. While it is essential to maintain and focus on the public health efforts made to control the pandemic, it is also important to pay attention to the recovery of our economy at the same time. We are proud to be collaborating in this pilot project and to support our partners in the revival of airport activities and air transport by leveraging our laboratory expertise and the medical and scientific know-how of our professionals" - Geneviève Biron, President and CEO of Biron Health Group Inc.

"We are very pleased to be working with Aéroports de Montréal and Biron on this new initiative which will allow our customers flying to France to travel with confidence and peace of mind. Among all the measures based on a scientific approach put forward by Air Canada in recent months, the screening test at the airport is by far the most important. Rapid screening is an effective and responsible alternative that facilitates the safe relaxation of global travel restrictions and quarantine measures, while protecting the health and safety of the travelling public." – Dr. Jim Chung, Chief Medical Officer of Air Canada.

"We are very proud of our collaboration with Aéroports de Montréal and Biron Health Group, which will help facilitate travel preparations for our customers able to fly to mainland France, whose entry requirements now include the presentation of a negative test result.  At Air France and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, we value and care about the health, wellbeing and travel experience of our customers. We proactively entered into an agreement with Biron Health Group early on so that travelers could obtain their test results quickly to meet the requirements of their destination country. This new initiative offered right at the airport in Montreal is in line with our efforts to ensure travel in all serenity."  - Catherine Guillemart-Dias, Vice-President and General Manager of Air France KLM Canada

"Since Montreal is our largest hub, it was only natural for us to participate in this pilot project and we are delighted to be able to offer this simple alternative to our customers who are travelling to France in greater numbers as the holiday season approaches. We warmly applaud this initiative, which supports our joint efforts to boost tourism by enabling us to develop effective and safe solutions that we hope will help ease the travel restrictions currently in place." – Annick Guérard, Chief Operating Officer of Transat. 

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Time Payment Air Travel.

Air Canada and Uplift Collaborate to Offer Travellers Flexible, Pay-Over-Time Booking Options

air_canada_logo.jpg?w=1024

Turn Travel Dreams into Reality with Fixed, Affordable Monthly Payments

MONTREAL, Dec. 8, 2020 /CNW Telbec/ – Air Canada and Uplift today announced a new collaboration, giving the airline’s customers access to Uplift’s flexible, financing options. Travellers can now book flights from Canada and the U.S. to destinations throughout Air Canada’s global network and pay for those trips over time with Uplift.

“Air Canada’s strategy is to put the customer at the center of everything we do and give them tools to better design and manage their travel. This includes offering the convenience of alternative payment options. In collaborating with Uplift, we are further expanding these options for our customers,” said Keith Wallis, Senior Director, Distribution and Payments at Air Canada.

“We’re proud to collaborate with one of the most innovative airlines in the world and to offer a flexible payment option helping more people realize their travel dreams,” said Denise Heffron, Managing Director, Canada, Uplift. “Like Air Canada, we understand how important and special travel is. Our goal is to make travel more affordable and rewarding for everyone and this collaboration accelerates our ability to do so.”

Uplift provides users the freedom to finance their trip and pay for it over time. Customers can easily compare the costs of paying monthly with those of paying upfront, choosing the option that works best for them. There are no prepayment penalties and travellers clearly see the interest rate and total cost of the trip at the time of booking.

Customers will be given the option to pay Air Canada in full or pay monthly through Uplift at time of booking. When selecting monthly payments customers can quickly apply online to receive an estimate of monthly payments and advance purchase amounts. Travellers can use Uplift to secure best available pricing, book a last-minute trip, add benefits such as preferred seats or upgrade flights to Premium Economy and Business Class, while easily managing the costs with fixed, affordable monthly payments.

About Air Canada

Air Canada is Canada’s largest domestic and international airline. Canada’s flag carrier is among the 20 largest airlines in the world and in 2019 served over 51 million customers. Air Canada is 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, which also named Air Canada the 2019 Best Airline in North America. For more information, please visit: aircanada.com/media, follow Air Canada on Twitter and LinkedIn, and join Air Canada on Facebook.

About Uplift

Uplift was founded by a passionate team of travel industry veterans to help consumers budget, buy and experience the travel they want. Uplift seamlessly integrates into our partners’ booking sites and payment processes to give travelers the freedom to finance their trip and pay over time. By reducing friction from the booking process, Uplift helps travel brands reach new customers and convert more business. Uplift is the only point-of-sale financing company focused exclusively on travel and our AI-driven platform is purpose built for it. Pay Monthly is offered by leading travel brands throughout Canada and the United States.

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‘Verge of collapse’: Air Canada reports more service cuts, station closures in Atlantic Canada

99111154_249414959501939_637002113521129
By Aya Al-Hakim  Global News
Posted December 8, 2020 10:53 am
 Updated December 8, 2020 11:04 am
An Air Canada ticketing station is shown at Pearson International Airport in Toronto on Wednesday, April 8, 2020.
An Air Canada ticketing station is shown at Pearson International Airport in Toronto on Wednesday, April 8, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Atlantic Canada’s airports were advised Tuesday of more service cuts and station closures by Air Canada that will become effective Jan. 11, 2021.

As of that day, Air Canada will be suspending all flights until further notice in Sydney, N.S., and Saint John, N.B., and suspending four routes until further notice in Deer Lake, N.L., Charlottetown, Fredericton and Halifax.

In a statement, the Atlantic Canada Airports Association (ACAA) said the announcement comes on the heels of WestJet’s October announcement suspending 80 per cent of the airline’s Atlantic Canada capacity, and an earlier announcement in June by Air Canada indefinitely suspending 11 routes in Atlantic Canada along with the closure of stations in Bathurst, N.B., and Wabush, N.L.

According to the association, the second wave of COVID-19 infections is piling “added pressure on a sector on the verge of collapse.”

“Station closures are the worst-case scenario for some of our region’s smaller airports, and the result will further fracture the viability of people who need to efficiently move in and out of these communities,” the statement reads.

The association said it could be looking at the end of some of its small regional airports if solutions are not found.

Click to play video 'Air Canada and WestJet set to begin flying to Hawaii in December'1:59Air Canada and WestJet set to begin flying to Hawaii in December

Air Canada and WestJet set to begin flying to Hawaii in December – Nov 24, 2020

“This is the third major round of cuts to air service for our region in the last six months,” Derrick Stanford, president of the ACAA and CEO of Saint John Airport, said in a press release.

“Service has been whittled down to an unsustainable level for our airports. Our industry cannot survive and operate in these conditions, and we are seeing the worst-case scenario playing out here today.”

According to Monette Pasher, the executive director of the ACAA, the industry has been calling for federal support for the nation’s airlines for months now, adding that there was not enough support for medium-sized or large airports and no news for air carriers other than the wage subsidy support.

“Half of the employees in our industry are out of work, and as a hardest hit sector, more support is required urgently for airports and airlines in order to get through this pandemic,” said Pasher.

In the meantime, the ACAA is calling for testing pilot programs at Atlantic region airports to better understand the level of COVID-19 in various communities.

“Industry experts say it could take up to a year until the majority of the population is vaccinated, this sector cannot wait that long to begin recovery,” said Pasher.

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1 hour ago, Malcolm said:

Time Payment Air Travel.

Air Canada and Uplift Collaborate to Offer Travellers Flexible, Pay-Over-Time Booking Options

air_canada_logo.jpg?w=1024

Turn Travel Dreams into Reality with Fixed, Affordable Monthly Payments

 

"Turn Travel Dreams into Reality with Fixed, Affordable Monthly Payments"....

Yeah, smart move, pile on some more debt to fulfil your travel dreams..

This is one of the most ill-advised marketing ploys I've seen lately!

If you can't afford the ticket, stay home!

Jeez...

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23 minutes ago, conehead said:

"Turn Travel Dreams into Reality with Fixed, Affordable Monthly Payments"....

Yeah, smart move, pile on some more debt to fulfil your travel dreams..

This is one of the most ill-advised marketing ploys I've seen lately!

If you can't afford the ticket, stay home!

Jeez...

You must be retired......... the airline industry has been accepting credit card payment for a very long time. The average canadian credit card debt is $4200 and be charge 3 billion/year on them. Your customers/guests have been borrowing to travel for a very long time and it's key to all airlines survival. Your thinking is very bad for business. 

If the interest rates are lower than credit cards then it makes sense.

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Some people have to finance or use lay away for a flight or trip? 

Putting that notion out there is ridiculous.

Can you imagine the claims AC's competitors will make

"Need to fly to Montreal?  Well now you can with no more need for layaway pricing or silly consumer credit applications using Westjets all in one low low price of $199.00"

 

Edited by Specs
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31 minutes ago, Bobcaygeon said:

You must be retired......... the airline industry has been accepting credit card payment for a very long time. The average canadian credit card debt is $4200 and be charge 3 billion/year on them. Your customers/guests have been borrowing to travel for a very long time and it's key to all airlines survival. Your thinking is very bad for business. 

If the interest rates are lower than credit cards then it makes sense.

Well, yeah, I’m a boomer, so I’ve been trained all my life that debt is bad, savings is good. I think it’s a thing with my generation.

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19 minutes ago, conehead said:

Well, yeah, I’m a boomer, so I’ve been trained all my life that debt is bad, savings is good. I think it’s a thing with my generation.

Well I am not a boomer but am on the same page....If I go downtown and use my CC (love to do it with the iPhone?) and then come home, I sit down and do an on-line payment.

 

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AC cancels more maritime service and what......?

Provincial authorities INCREASE quarantine travel restrictions but still expect that private companies will subsidize air service JUST IN CASE a local wants to travel outside the province.

Hey Justin - are you watching? What about you Rocketman?

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