dforce1
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AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 6:14 am

Air Canada’s network expands to Yellowknife; new routes from Western Canada.

Today we announced the expansion of our network with the start-up of two new, daily non-stop flights to Yellowknife, NWT, the diamond capital of North America and gateway to Canada’s north. Air Canada Jazz will begin daily non-stop service to Yellowknife from Edmonton on July 3rd and from Calgary on July 4th. Jazz will also launch daily, non-stop service on August 1st on the following new routes: Edmonton-Victoria, BC; Calgary-Comox, BC; Edmonton-Kelowna, BC and Winnipeg-London, ON. These destinations are eligible for travel through our multi-trip Flight Passes and will be operated by Air Canada Jazz with 50-seat CRJ-200 aircraft. “The introduction of non-stop flights from both Edmonton and Calgary to Yellowknife links the vibrant and growing economy of Canada’s north to Air Canada’s global network with convenient connections to points across our extensive network,” said Ben Smith, Air Canada’s vice president responsible for network planning at Air Canada and Jazz. “The start-up of all our new routes across western Canada is great news for business and leisure travellers alike. Through Air Canada’s growing range of multi-trip Flight Passes, we are offering our customers an innovative way of purchasing air travel across our expanding North American network with unprecedented freedom, ease and flexibility.”

For more details about upcoming summer schedule enhancements, refer to the press release available at aircanada.com (About Air Canada/ Media Centre).
 
mtnwest1979
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 7:11 am

Great. more YZF-YYC/YEG flights. Can't they think of somewhere else to fly to from Yellowknife? YVR, for instance. Guess it makes better connections either East or West from Alberta's cities.
Hope it doesn't take too much from First Air or Canadian North.
"If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"
 
yegbey01
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 7:23 am

The only thing that I can think of is: AC is going after the WS niche routes

ie, YYC-Comox, YEG-YLW and YEG-YYJ

wow....it will be very interesting to see how WestJet is going to react....These RJs are going to push WesJet to rethink its strategy alright
 
ktachiya
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 8:35 am

Quoting MtnWest1979 (Reply 1):
Great. more YZF-YYC/YEG flights. Can't they think of somewhere else to fly to from Yellowknife? YVR, for instance. Guess it makes better connections either East or West from Alberta's cities.
Hope it doesn't take too much from First Air or Canadian North.

This might be a picky thing to say to Air Canada, but why not start a winter service to Yellowknife from Vancouver on like a 2x weekly service? Reason being that there are so many Japanese tourists that come from Japan to go see the Aurora Borealis.

I was one such example of this during the winter. I did YVR-YEG to Yellowknife from there and the ticket cost me $1000!!! Well, it is a good deal but think of all the Japanese tourists.

Say if you lived in parts not near NRT or KIX

You would have to do the domestic run in Japan to KIX or NRT, come to YVR, fly to YEG, and then make an onward connection to Yellowknife.

I wonder if they see any potential of this. While in Yellowknife, I also met many people who were going back to Vancouvr (miners) to see their families for the weekend.

But, I guess if they started such a service, Air North and First Air would be devastated?
Flown on: DC-10-30, B747-200B, B747-300, B747-300SR, B747-400, B747-400D, B767-300, B777-200, B777-200ER, B777-300
 
9252fly
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 1:40 pm

Quoting Ktachiya (Reply 3):
But, I guess if they started such a service, Air North and First Air would be devastated?

I think you meant to say Canadian North,not Air North. Would the service devastate the two carriers,no! AC is interested in the passenger feed for it's network and has very little interest moving domestic cargo,which is something the two carriers do very well and I should add,make a lot of money at. I doubt you will see AC offer a YVR-YZF route when the primary year-round market is YYC and YZF. I think these new routes will do well and have minimal impact on 5T and 7F.
Some of the other new routes mentioned were interesting,yet not overly surprising. The YYC-YQQ route should do well with a single frequency. It's quite possible that an additional flight could be added at a later date that would increase connectivity in YYC,such as an early morning departure with an overnight aircraft. AC return to the YQQ market has been long expected considering the reasons for leaving shortly after the AC and CP merger. It's a rather interesting story with all kinds of speculation as to why it occurred. The most plausible reason seems to be the threat of legal action by 5P,which lost it's contract to provide feed with CP after the AC takeover/merger.
Some of the new services out of YEG to YYJ and YLW are a reinstatement of services that existed years ago and have returned with a vengeance. It's become clear that AC has recently realised that the CRJ is the most suitable aircraft for these types of routes. These routes as well as the reinstatement of the YWG-YXU route are a way for AC to participate in markets that they should never has exited in the first place.
 
YZFOO7F
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 1:48 pm

Wow, this is a surprise and a half. I never thought AC would do such a thing. I wonder how much 7F and 5T will suffer from this new route schedule. Do you think it'll just be seasonal? I know that a lot of people wouldn't mind getting to edmonton for cheaper than $800, and I'm sure it will be cheaper to fly AC.

Quoting Ktachiya (Reply 3):
but why not start a winter service to Yellowknife from Vancouver on like a 2x weekly service?

This would be a good idea for the winter season. As an employee for First Air, I know that in the winter, there are a ton of pax connecting through Vancouver. First Air had twice weekly service to Vancouver at one point but scrapped it, I believe shortly after 9/11.
Promise me you'll always leave the ground
 
A346Dude
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 1:57 pm

Cool, my home airport (YXU) is getting CRJs!

You know it's a small airport when a daily CRJ is a big deal.  Silly
You know the gear is up and locked when it takes full throttle to taxi to the terminal.
 
9252fly
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:04 pm

Quoting A346Dude (Reply 6):
You know it's a small airport when a daily CRJ is a big deal.

I'm sure if you went out to the airport and had a look around the Jazz hangar,you would find a lot of RJ aircraft. So it may be the first scheduled RJ flight,but it's a regular visitor to YXU.
 
AirCanadaMan
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:16 pm

Wow...didnt entirely expect to see this. The relationship between First Air/AC and Canadian North/AC has been degrading over the years, but this was indeed interesting and unexpected to see.

While people may claim Air Canada is just after the passenger market, keep in mind there are now three players on the YEG-YZF and two on the YYC-YZF route, it may not seem like much, but keep in mind that now there is the potential to have upwards of 8 flights a day (from YEG alone, some ~700-800 seats), to a town of 19,000. YYC-YZF is all an all passenger service right now, I expect this will be the first to get axed by 5T if this works out for AC. First Air and Canadian North arent necessarily flying with full planes year round either to YEG/YZF, so a carrier may find themselves in a situation where flights may be reduced, resulting in less cargo service, which inturn hurts the north. If either carrier is hurting badly enough (flying about 3 flights a day right now), expect to see it down to two, reduction of all 100 seat configs down to combi flights and, even, full cargo flights instead of the combi configs.
Whitehorse barely carries two carriers, Yellowknife does have more economically, so it's going to be fun to watch. I expect Air Canada is trying to go after the southeners who work up in the mines and commute every 20 days, as well as tourism, students and basic VFR traffic.

Passengers still get hot meals and darn good service on both carriers, far superior to what Air Canada is offering, heck First Air just this year announced their new 37" pitch interriors, however the people of the north will likely fly the cheapest, no perks. Loyalty with 7F and 5T is done with Aeroplan, AC, obviously can offer the same. That being said however, Northern Incentives will likely keep the lucartive government flights (for the employees, health trips etc.) to the Northern carriers, as the Government of the Northwest Territories would get flamed for supporting the southern giant.

Let the games begin, either AC will fall flat on its face, or 5T and 7F will have to rethink their game plans. As much as I like AC, I think this move was somewhat unwarranted, the route was well served by their partners. Its going to be interesting.
 
A346Dude
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:39 pm

Quoting 9252fly (Reply 7):
I'm sure if you went out to the airport and had a look around the Jazz hangar,you would find a lot of RJ aircraft. So it may be the first scheduled RJ flight,but it's a regular visitor to YXU.

Actually, I have! At the time I went, they were in the process of converting a couple of CRJ-100s from AC mainline to Jazz. Neat place, and for a long time I had no idea there was a Jazz maintenance facility in London.
You know the gear is up and locked when it takes full throttle to taxi to the terminal.
 
9252fly
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:46 pm

Quoting A346Dude (Reply 9):
Neat place, and for a long time I had no idea there was a Jazz maintenance facility in London.

It's the heavy maintenance base for the CRJ. Jazz will have 58 CRJ 100 and 200 aircraft within the next few months as well as the 15 CRJ 705. Expect it to be a very busy place for the foreseeable future with a possibility of more CRJ aircraft joining the fleet.
 
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yyz717
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 3:00 pm

Good move for Jazz. These should be high yield routes.

What's with Westjet? Letting AC muscle in on natural WJ markets.
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Tennisace
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 3:21 pm

Yellowknife surprises me a bit, but the other additions don't. YEG-YLW, YEG-YYJ, YYC-YQQ all have at least 2 dailies on them with Westjet so that's at least 250 seats per day. It was only a matter of time before JAZZ added some frequencies there as more CRJ's came available. Adding 50 seats a day to those routes is what, only about a 20 percent increase in capacity. YXU-YWG is a slight surprise as AC has at different times flown YXU-YYC. I think you might see YLW-YYJ or maybe YXS-YYC in the not too distant future as well.

Does anyone know when the transfer of all the CRJ's from AC mainline to Jazz is supposed to be complete??
 
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ODwyerPW
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 3:27 pm

nothing like the Buffalo Airways DC-3s into Yellowknife though.
learning never stops.
 
accargo
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 9:21 pm

Quoting Yyz717 (Reply 11):
What's with Westjet? Letting AC muscle in on natural WJ markets.

That's the problem with sticking to one acft type. They have had ample time to look over a route like this in their own backyard. Obviously they did not feel it would be profitable using even a small 737. Look for this to happen more often with all those EMB's coming to ACE and the move to Jazz of the CRJ fleet.
 
cayman
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Thu Mar 23, 2006 11:47 pm

I wonder if YYZ YZF could be sustained on an E175 or E190? They can do Ft McMurray I wouldn't have thought it would be that much longer.

Might be something for them to consider for future growth.
 
YZFOO7F
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Fri Mar 24, 2006 1:31 am

Quoting AirCanadaMan (Reply 8):
As much as I like AC, I think this move was somewhat unwarranted

I agree. The YEG-YZF route has always been rightfully the northern carrier's territory. I think 7F will continue to do well as most of their profit comes from the cargo routes, especially with their herc. This is probably the worst time for AC to pull this too, as 7F has just put an all pax 732 into service on this route. It'll really be interesting to see what happens.

Quoting ODwyerPW (Reply 13):
nothing like the Buffalo Airways DC-3s into Yellowknife though.

I did that flight once. It was scary.
Promise me you'll always leave the ground
 
9252fly
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Fri Mar 24, 2006 2:37 am

Quoting Tennisace (Reply 12):
Does anyone know when the transfer of all the CRJ's from AC mainline to Jazz is supposed to be complete??

Based on the amount of CRJ aircraft in the mainline fleet,the transfer should be completed by May 1st. That will end twelve years of CRJ service with AC.

Quoting CayMan (Reply 15):
I wonder if YYZ YZF could be sustained on an E175 or E190?

I suspect there are many routes that will now become viable. YZF would most likely have the critical mass required to sustain the service.
 
YZFOO7F
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Fri Mar 24, 2006 2:43 am

Quoting 9252fly (Reply 17):
YZF would most likely have the critical mass required to sustain the service.

Could be, but from what I've witnessed at 7F, YYZ doesn't see enough pax coming from YZF. Most of the mine workers that come up from the southern parts are from the west.
Promise me you'll always leave the ground
 
dforce1
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Fri Mar 24, 2006 5:15 am

I don't think AC Jazz is going to be taking much away from WJ on the Western regional routes. Firstly, I think most people would take a 737 over a CRJ anyday for the purpose of comfort. WJ's 737's has IFE where as the CRJ200's don't. AC is still going after the Aeroplan loyalty/business/feeder traffic. WJ is still focusing on O&D leisure market. I think there is enough demand in the market to support two carriers and I think the CRJ200 is the right move for AC into it. If they were trying to fly them with A319's, then we would have a fare war with overcapacity.

And with YYJ-YEG only once per day - there's not much flexibility for travellers. I think most will still lean to WJ. But if WJ does launch international European routes out of YYC, then I think AC has got to watch out because then WJ may steal their feeder traffic.
 
9252fly
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RE: AC To Serve Yellowknife, Expands Western Routes

Fri Mar 24, 2006 5:49 am

Quoting DFORCE1 (Reply 19):
AC is still going after the Aeroplan loyalty/business/feeder traffic. WJ is still focusing on O&D leisure market.

That's exactly the focus. It seems their view is not so much to take on WS,as it is to offer services to it's customers that don't have the option of using AC,or find it impractical to do so.

Quoting DFORCE1 (Reply 19):
I think there is enough demand in the market to support two carriers and I think the CRJ200 is the right move for AC into it. If they were trying to fly them with A319's, then we would have a fare war with overcapacity.

That's the beauty of the CRJ,not too much capacity,yet jet service.

Quoting DFORCE1 (Reply 19):
And with YYJ-YEG only once per day - there's not much flexibility for travellers.

For now!

Quoting DFORCE1 (Reply 19):
But if WJ does launch international European routes out of YYC, then I think AC has got to watch out because then WJ may steal their feeder traffic.

Not an impossibility. If WS choose to go international,they better know what they are getting themselves into. It will be a very costly and risky venture. If their trans-border(International)efforts are any indicator of how their European operations will preform,they best stick to what they do are good at.

Quoting DFORCE1 (Reply 19):
WJ's 737's has IFE where as the CRJ200's don't.

From what I understand the B736 will not get the IFE system. Having IFE is over-rated on short-haul flights. What's important to consumers is cost.