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Joined: Tue Jul 19, 2005 12:59 pm

Easy: An AC Substitution. Hard: 20 Years Ago

Thu Jun 01, 2006 3:14 am

I realize this is pretty obscure, and I won't be all that surprised if I get zero responses to this.

As a kid growing up near YQT in the 80's, I travelled pretty frequently to YYZ to visit family, and in the wintertime, driving was out of the question. I probably flew the YQT-YYZ-YQT route 3-4 times a year, and though I was fascinated by aviation even then, I can't remember what sort of equipment was used on the route. I would suspect it was DC-9s, 737s, and perhaps F28s - it certainly was all on narrowbody aircraft.

One Christmas, we went to fly to YYZ, and our aircraft was much larger than usual.. when we boarded, it was in a 2-3-2 configuration - a Boeing 767. Even today I'd be pretty pumped about my narrowbody being upgraded to a 767, and as a kid I was practically bouncing off the overhead bins about my first flight on a widebody. My mom was a travel agent at the time, and she said she'd do some digging to try to figure out why this happened - later, she told me that AC substituted the larger aircraft due to higher loads in the Christmas season.

My memory of this is really, really foggy, and it's possible that this is just some sort of childhood dream or something. The question: Did this really happen? I dug around as best I could and couldn't find anything supporting this. YQT has never, ever had regularly scheduled widebody service of any kind, and I would suspect that you could count on your fingers the number of times a widebody has ever visited YQT. Did AC ever have a practice of substituting widebodies on routes as minor as YQT-YYZ during peak-demand seasons?

Thanks for any insight into this.
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RE: Easy: An AC Substitution. Hard: 20 Years Ago

Thu Jun 01, 2006 5:26 am

It is 100% possible that if the demand is there and the aircraft can land at the airport which it most likely could cause thunder bay is quite large that it is possible.
Unfortionatly for me though I have never been on an Upgraded aircraft, actually only downgraded by Air Canada due to underloading on the YYZ-YUL-YYZ route.
Anyways to answer your question bluntly, Yes it is possible!

Hope I have helped at all,
From somewhere out there...
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RE: Easy: An AC Substitution. Hard: 20 Years Ago

Thu Jun 01, 2006 7:25 am


Thanks. Actually, I've never even heard of any airline actually downgrading a route on a given day due to poor loads, so that's interesting to hear.

YQT, actually, is not all that large in terms of the runways. The longest runway (07/25) is only 6200 feet long. A fully-laden Boeing 767 needs 8,000 feet, or so, to take off I believe. But a YQT-YYZ flight needs probably a tenth (or less) of the maximum fuel capacity, so 6,200 feet would probably suffice.
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RE: Easy: An AC Substitution. Hard: 20 Years Ago

Thu Jun 01, 2006 9:49 am

Honestly ... I would be really surprised if a B767 ever flew into YQT unless it were on fire!

Looking in the books it shows that we may use YQT as a "Technical Alternate" only. That means that although the airport has the required runway and navaids, there is no ground support equipment, nor passenger handling capabilities. This being the case, we may only use YQT as an alternate for the B767 when there is minimal risk of it being required.

Therefore, without ground support equipment, I would be surprised were a B767 to visit YQT.

You have to wonder, how people got on or off the aircraft, as YQT did not get bridges until the early 1990's, and I can't imagine a set of stairs around YQT that would reach a B767. Also, how were bags taken on or off the aircraft as there would be no ground handling equipment capable of handling containerized cargo.

That's not to say it didn't happen, just that the logistics involved would make sending say two DC-9s instead would be easier. No pictures, boarding pass or safety card?
Just because I stopped arguing, doesn't mean I think you are right. It just means I gave up!
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RE: Easy: An AC Substitution. Hard: 20 Years Ago

Thu Jun 01, 2006 10:30 am

Perhaps you're thinking Thunder Bay to YYZ cos that was the route you usually flew. But aren't you fogetting the time you went out to Vancouver to visit the relatives out west? Or that time you flew from YYZ to YOW (the nation's capital!) on a school trip?
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz

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