Air Canada says it is making “significant reductions” to its scheduled flights in July and August, in response to a series of challenges facing the wider airline industry amid growing travel demand.
In a statement Wednesday, Michael Rousseau, president and chief executive of the airline, explained that Air Canada will reduce the number of flights it will operate during these key summer months.
“Unfortunately, things are not business as usual in our industry globally, and this is affecting our operations and our ability to serve you with our normal standards of care,” Rousseau said in the statement.
“The COVID-19 pandemic brought the global air travel system to a halt in early 2020. Now, after more than two years, global travel is resurfacing and people are flying again at an unprecedented pace. seen in our industry.
The president said these factors were causing “unprecedented and unforeseen stresses on all aspects of the global aviation system”, leading to flight delays and crowded airport spaces.
Dozens fewer round trips every day
Peter Fitzpatrick, a spokesman for the airline, told CBC News the changes would see Air Canada cut its schedule by 77 round trips – or 154 flights – on average, each day during the months of July and August.
Prior to these cuts, the airline operated around 1,000 flights per day.
“Three routes will be temporarily suspended between Montreal and Pittsburgh, Baltimore and Kelowna and one from Toronto to Fort McMurray,” Fitzpatrick said.
Fitzpatrick said “most” flights affected by the changes depart from its hubs in Toronto and Montreal.
“These will mainly be frequency reductions, primarily affecting evening and late night flights by smaller aircraft, on cross-border and domestic routes,” he said.
But he said “international flights are unaffected, with some schedule changes to reduce peak-hour flights and even out the flow of customers.”
“Not an easy decision”
Rousseau, the airline’s president, said Air Canada had done what it could to prepare for these challenges, but needed to adjust its operations to the current circumstances.
“It was not an easy decision, as it will lead to additional flight cancellations which will negatively impact some customers,” Rousseau said.
“But doing so in advance allows affected customers time to make other arrangements in an orderly fashion, rather than having their trip cut short shortly before or during their trip, with few alternatives available.”