CALGARY, ALBERTA--WestJet today announced it will withdraw service from Sault Ste. Marie and Sudbury, Ontario effective September 9th and 10th respectively. WestJet has been flying into these two Ontario destinations since December 2001.
WestJet's Vice President of Marketing and Sales, Bill Lamberton, commented today: "It is unfortunate that market conditions have forced us to make the difficult decision to withdraw service from both Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie. Since entering these markets in December of 2001, WestJet has worked hard to stimulate air travel from these communities. The past 18 months has shown us that we are able to generate strong traffic in the summer season, but are unable to sustain strong year-round ridership.
"It is our belief that the poor level of demand in the slower seasons are in large part a result of the continuous increase in taxes and fees that are being imposed on Canadian travellers by the Government of Canada and other agencies. We will continue to lobby the government, as we have in the past, to reduce the taxes and fees that are disproportionately impacting many short-haul routes such as our routes east and west of Sault Ste. Marie and Sudbury. It is our hope that market conditions will some day improve, providing us with the opportunity to re-enter these cities with seasonal services.
"We would like to thank the residents of Sudbury and Sault Ste. Marie and surrounding communities for their past support. We look forward to continuing our service until September 10, 2003."
All guests booked on WestJet flights from Sault Ste. Marie after September 9th and Sudbury after September 10th will be contacted by WestJet to resolve their existing reservation. The 16 WestJet staff members that are affected have been offered options which include relocation opportunities within the airline.
WestJet serves the 26 Canadian cities of Victoria, Comox, Vancouver, Abbotsford/Fraser Valley, Prince George, Kelowna, Calgary, Edmonton, Grande Prairie, Fort McMurray, Saskatoon, Regina, Winnipeg, Thunder Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, Sudbury, Windsor, London, Hamilton, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Moncton, Halifax, St. John's (beginning June 16) and Gander (beginning June 17). WestJet is publicly traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol WJA.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: WestJet, Siobhan Vinish (Pronounced Sha-von), Director, Public Relations and Communications, (403) 444-2615, (403) 444-2261 (FAX), Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, Website: www.westjet.com
Well bad news for those cities but if they are not profitable what can you do?
Captaingomes From Canada, joined Feb 2001, 6413 posts, RR: 56 Reply 5, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 2109 times:
Everybody complains when Air Canada withdraws from certain domestic services. People give the argument it's the "flag" carrier and should serve those routes. Well, I'm sure more than a few routes that have been eliminated from Air Canada's routes and other's as well, including Westjet would still be serviced if it were not for the rediculous fees and taxes being imposed on the airlines. It's not the airline's jobs of bringing the country together, it's the job of the federal government. I argue that all the taxes that cause the elimination of many routes contribute to the problem of communities not being tied together by effective transportation networks.
"it's kind of like an Airbus, it's an engineering marvel, but there's no sense of passion" -- J. Clarkson re: Coxster
Yow From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 6, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 2074 times:
I agree, the level of taxation is out of control, even with the recent reduction in the air security "fee". The result is the airports are forced to raise their fees to the airlines, thus rendering many potentially profitable short-haul routes as being unprofitable.
One difference between AC and WJ with dropping routes/destinations that bugs me, is usually when AC has dropped a route it quietly disappears, whereas on the few rare occassions WestJet drops a route they let the public know and their reasons for doing so. A good example of the difference between good customer service and bad service. In other words the difference between good publicity and bad publicity.
Crj 900 From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 588 posts, RR: 1 Reply 7, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2048 times:
Don't forget that alot of Jazz traffic into those communities is business traffic and who wants to go to YHM when they can go to YYZ. Also, AC offers Aeroplan and connections worldwide, Clive does not. There are some places that he cannot compete. I'm hoping that with the restructuring we MAY see AC offer RJ service to those destinations that can handle the airplane....it would be nice for the passengers , let's hope we get more( i think we will).
Yow From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 8, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 1960 times:
Crj900, how are the CRJ runs to YTS doing? I was at YYZ on the weekend and a CRJ flight from YTS had about 30 people deplane...that's only taken from the perspective of one mid-afternoon flight of course. What are the chances of CRJs being removed now that SG is leaving YTS?
NorthStarDC4M From Canada, joined Apr 2000, 2908 posts, RR: 39 Reply 9, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 1936 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW CHAT OPERATOR
actually, ionically, YTS may get to keep its CRJs. I've heard reports that Jazz is pulling the Dash 8-300s from YYZ ops, which would mean the CRJ would be the 50 seater for them out of YYZ. YTS is a bit heavy for only Dash 8-100s so... who knows.
I do know one thing, YSB won't get CRJs, and YAM getting them would really surprise me, they are just too short of a flight.
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
Yyz717 From Canada, joined Sep 2001, 16125 posts, RR: 57 Reply 11, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 1869 times:
Fine. This is how you keep an airline from going into bankruptcy.
Exactly. A good company realizes what ain't making money.
Two very logical statements. These are not the 1st markets WJ has withdrawn from & likely won't be the last. There's also nothing stopping WJ from returning to these markets in the future.
I argue that all the taxes that cause the elimination of many routes contribute to the problem of communities not being tied together by effective transportation networks.
I disagree. When air service is reduced due to high taxes, it just shifts the travel to ground systems which are often more efficient than air transport. The removal of air service from a community and its replacement by more buses CAN be a good thing.
Anyway, unless you're willing to vote for the Alliance party, you have no right to complain about any high taxes.
Panam, TWA, Ansett, Eastern.......AC next? Might be good for Canada.
Crj 900 From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 588 posts, RR: 1 Reply 13, posted (10 years 7 months 1 week 6 days 9 hours ago) and read 1861 times:
Well we were all expecting them to pull the RJ from YTS but it hasn't happened yet. The loads are good first thing in the am and late in the pm otherwise they vary. Like i said most of the traffic is in favor of the business market. I would hope they keep the a/c operating there, as well YAM would be another good spot for the RJ. I think in markets like YTS or YSB it's hard for an airline like Westjet or Jetsgo to compete. Yes they operate jets, but they are larger jets. Further, most of the traffic for them is leisure and not high yield and we have multiple flights a day 4-6 depending with an a/c that will make money not full. You have to fill up to make a 737 or md80 profitable at the prices they charge. Competetion is good i agree 100%, but there are places that the LCCs won't do so well. It's gonna be interesting for the next little while cause it looks as though they may begin to start cutting out the non profitable stuff and leave it to the third tier carriers. I'm hoping we end up with a USAir type RJ order.