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whatnext Dec 6, 2021 6:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hehehe (Post 9468060)
A lot of their new routes don't seem particularly sustainable or profitable...

Yeah, about that. I had asked earlier how they could afford some of their moves. The Globe & Mail has some answers and also raise some questions. Sorry, whole article is subscriber only.

Flair Airlines is expanding rapidly, but internal discord and regulatory scrutiny raise questions about its ambitious growth
ERIC ATKINSTRANSPORTATION REPORTER
PUBLISHED YESTERDAY

...It’s a different picture at Flair Airlines, the tiny discount carrier based in Edmonton. On Jan. 27, Flair announced plans to lease and fly 13 Boeing 737 Max passenger jets. The bigger fleet would fly new routes to eight Canadian cities – 18 by the summer. “With this order, Flair is well on the way to achieving its ‘F50′ ambition of growing to 50 planes within five years,” said Flair, which at the time had just three 737s, two of which were essentially grounded by the pandemic.

The new planes would be leased from 777 Partners, the Miami-based private equity company that owns 25 per cent of Flair and is a major creditor to the airline, which bills itself as a low-cost alternative to its large rivals....

....Jocelyn Harris, Flair’s vice-president of finance until the end of 2020, said she advised chief executive officer Stephen Jones that the airline could not afford the expansion, given that it was almost completely shut down and could not pay its bills.

“I couldn’t comprehend it,” Ms. Harris said of the plan to lease planes from 777 Partners. “In the fall we were completely insolvent, and they were going to go and sign on these contracts for these planes.”

Ms. Harris, who has filed a wrongful dismissal and harassment lawsuit against Flair, alleged in a court filing and interview that 777 Partners was calling the shots at Flair. She said she warned executives that the control exerted by the U.S.-based company was a possible violation of Canadian laws. A foreign investor cannot hold more than 25 per cent of a Canadian airline’s shares, nor is it allowed to take charge of company decision-making, known by the regulator as “control in fact.”..

....In 2019, 777 Partners bought a 25-per-cent stake in Flair for an undisclosed amount. Flair, in a statement announcing the investment, said 777 Partners’ “financial strength” would help it grow and compete with Canada’s two dominant airlines.

The private equity investor does not disclose financial data. It made headlines in the sporting world in September with the purchase of Italy’s oldest professional soccer team, Genoa Cricket and Football Club, for a reported US$175-million. Its other investments include Synchrono Group Inc., a North Carolina-based insurance underwriter. Its aviation stakes include Air Black Box, a technology platform that allows a handful of Asian airlines to cross-sell seats...

....The 737s that 777 Partners will lease to Flair are among the 24 aircraft the private equity company is buying from Boeing. The deal includes an option to buy another 60 of the aircraft. Flair this month is flying nine 737 Max aircraft, five of which are leased from 777 Partners and four from an unrelated company, Ms. Kotak said.

Ms. Harris said Flair owed about $129-million to 777 Partners at the end of 2020. The loan came with 18-per-cent interest....(bold mine)

....Flair drew the attention of the regulator due to the nature of its financial arrangements with 777 Partners, Mr. Gradek said, leasing planes from the same part-owner and lender. “I think it was the fact that 777 Partners … was the entity that really wanted to deploy airplanes into Canada,” he said.

The Flair investigation appears to be at the initial stage of fact gathering to support a recommendation of action or dismissal. “And then it’s handed up to the [CTA] panel for them to do the adjudication and the formal issuance of CTA order, if one is required,” Mr. Gradek said....


https://www.theglobeandmail.com/busi...ernal-discord/

Dominion301 Dec 7, 2021 11:55 PM

YHU-based charter airline Chrono Aviation have acquired the first B738SF in Canada. It'll be based at YWG: https://www.lesoleil.com/2021/12/07/...1fef275ce0d996

https://images.omerlocdn.com/resize?...stripmeta=true

Hali87 Dec 8, 2021 2:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9468932)
Pre-pandemic it was pulling in 350k annual pax. Apparently the NL government is supporting the route. You’d think though Ottawa-Deer Lake would make more sense than Kitchener, unless they think they can attract people from Hamilton, Niagara, London and Toronto itself bypassing YYZ-YDF flights for a cheaper flight? Time will tell whether or not this works.

My guess is that it's geared as much or more towards (cheap, because Flair) transfers onward to YYC and YEG as it is to local Ontario destinations. In theory they could have done this through Ottawa instead.

Didn't Newfoundland have some kind of ambitions re: cloud computing? Maybe it's a tech industry thing?

Dominion301 Dec 8, 2021 5:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Hali87 (Post 9470862)
My guess is that it's geared as much or more towards (cheap, because Flair) transfers onward to YYC and YEG as it is to local Ontario destinations. In theory they could have done this through Ottawa instead.

Didn't Newfoundland have some kind of ambitions re: cloud computing? Maybe it's a tech industry thing?

The thing is though, there are now connections at Kitchener, and at least not yet, it's not a through flight.

If they wanted to connect the two tech capitals, they should launch Ottawa-Kitchener, but Pivot Airlines (aka the new Air Georgian) are about to do that already.

Dominion301 Dec 8, 2021 5:22 AM

AC to suspend YQY-YHZ 'indefinitely' after the holidays.

https://www.saltwire.com/cape-breton...ear-100664811/

Quote:

Air Canada has confirmed they will be suspending Sydney to Halifax flights from the JA Douglas McCurdy Sydney Airport as of Jan. 10, 2022, until further notice.

someone123 Dec 8, 2021 7:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9470924)
AC to suspend YQY-YHZ 'indefinitely' after the holidays.

This one was always on the chopping block. Cape Breton only has around 130,000 people in total and it's a 4 hour drive. The flight was sometimes expensive, $300 or more, while the bus is $60 and most people have cars. It was probably most useful for certain connecting flights.

But this is arguably one of those examples where if the region were a bit more developed it would maintain something like this route and people would be a bit better off. I believe there was passenger rail along this route until 1990 or so.

Denscity Dec 8, 2021 7:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by someone123 (Post 9471510)
This one was always on the chopping block. Cape Breton only has around 130,000 people in total and it's a 4 hour drive. The flight was sometimes expensive, $300 or more, while the bus is $60 and most people have cars. It was probably most useful for certain connecting flights.

But this is arguably one of those examples where if the region were a bit more developed it would maintain something like this route and people would be a bit better off. I believe there was passenger rail along this route until 1990 or so.

I was gonna say that's like chopping flights from Vancouver to Victoria but there is a huge population difference.

JakeLRS Dec 8, 2021 8:01 PM

I think the Summer of 2022 will see an absurd amount of new routes pop up throughout Canada.

With Flair now getting about a dozen additional aircraft, I'd assume swoop will probably get a few more, and the introduction of Lynx and (hopefully for real this time) Jetlines, it's gonna be wild.

In Ontario, there are still several underserved airports. Windsor and London, ON both come to mind in terms of lack of air service. Sudbury and North Bay could also potentially have demand for a few flights.

There are several East Coast cities with a lack of air services such as St. Johns and Moncton.

On the West Coast, I think we'll finally see Kamloops, Fort St. John, Nanaimo, and Penticton get some sort of connections through Swoop or Flair.

We've seen flair expand into Grand Prairie, and recently Deer lake, so I wouldn't be shocked if they continue to pick up smaller airports.

But I think next summer will be the summer of the long-awaited ULCC showdown.

ned Dec 8, 2021 10:41 PM

Castlegar Required Navigation Performance (RNP) Update
 
It sounds like Castlegar is on track to implement a Required Navigation Performance (RNP) approach, something that they have been working on for multiple years. The Castlegar News reported that the City of Castlegar has submitted the GPS landing procedure to the regulator for approval recently. https://www.castlegarnews.com/news/c...-for-approval/ The minimum cloud ceiling for takeoff and landing could be lowered from 3,000 feet to 1,000 feet according to the airport master plan, greatly improving reliability in the winter where I believe some months have a success rate at around 50 percent. The airport has one of the most challenging instrument approaches in North America, coupled with frequent poor visibility in the winter months. Air Canada (Jazz) is already running Q400’s into Castlegar which are RNP compatible and I believe they are using RNP approaches at other airports. The City expects approvals will be granted in 2022 and will be ready for an airline by 2023. This is great news for citizens and tourists (many that would probably be interested in skiing Red Mountain or Whitewater), especially considering that it sounds like the winter highway conditions can often be challenging.

thenoflyzone Dec 9, 2021 1:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ned (Post 9471719)
It sounds like Castlegar is on track to implement a Required Navigation Performance (RNP) approach, something that they have been working on for multiple years. The Castlegar News reported that the City of Castlegar has submitted the GPS landing procedure to the regulator for approval recently. https://www.castlegarnews.com/news/c...-for-approval/ The minimum cloud ceiling for takeoff and landing could be lowered from 3,000 feet to 1,000 feet according to the airport master plan, greatly improving reliability in the winter where I believe some months have a success rate at around 50 percent. The airport has one of the most challenging instrument approaches in North America, coupled with frequent poor visibility in the winter months. Air Canada (Jazz) is already running Q400’s into Castlegar which are RNP compatible and I believe they are using RNP approaches at other airports. The City expects approvals will be granted in 2022 and will be ready for an airline by 2023. This is great news for citizens and tourists (many that would probably be interested in skiing Red Mountain or Whitewater), especially considering that it sounds like the winter highway conditions can often be challenging.

Transport Canada still needs to approve the procedure, and that's by no means a done deal. From my understanding, these RNP approaches would require exemptions from Transport Canada, as they don't meet standard criteria for approach design. (Something about the distance at which the plane lines up on final during the RNP approach that is too close to the runway).

This being said, with proper OPS SPEC restrictions and training, anything is possible. If A319s can land in Paro, Bhutan, while lining up with the runway only seconds before touchdown, then a similar RNP approach into CYCG should be doable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6PimS7dtW8

Denscity Dec 9, 2021 5:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ned (Post 9471719)
It sounds like Castlegar is on track to implement a Required Navigation Performance (RNP) approach, something that they have been working on for multiple years. The Castlegar News reported that the City of Castlegar has submitted the GPS landing procedure to the regulator for approval recently. https://www.castlegarnews.com/news/c...-for-approval/ The minimum cloud ceiling for takeoff and landing could be lowered from 3,000 feet to 1,000 feet according to the airport master plan, greatly improving reliability in the winter where I believe some months have a success rate at around 50 percent. The airport has one of the most challenging instrument approaches in North America, coupled with frequent poor visibility in the winter months. Air Canada (Jazz) is already running Q400’s into Castlegar which are RNP compatible and I believe they are using RNP approaches at other airports. The City expects approvals will be granted in 2022 and will be ready for an airline by 2023. This is great news for citizens and tourists (many that would probably be interested in skiing Red Mountain or Whitewater), especially considering that it sounds like the winter highway conditions can often be challenging.

Dude you from the 'gar? You're very first post is about my airport that's awesome!

Denscity Dec 9, 2021 6:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by thenoflyzone (Post 9471884)
Transport Canada still needs to approve the procedure, and that's by no means a done deal. From my understanding, these RNP approaches would require exemptions from Transport Canada, as they don't meet standard criteria for approach design. (Something about the distance at which the plane lines up on final during the RNP approach that is too close to the runway).

This being said, with proper OPS SPEC restrictions and training, anything is possible. If A319s can land in Paro, Bhutan, while lining up with the runway only seconds before touchdown, then a similar RNP approach into CYCG should be doable.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6PimS7dtW8

Man he wasn't lined up till he was at just 50m above the runway!!

Dominion301 Dec 9, 2021 5:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Denscity (Post 9471534)
I was gonna say that's like chopping flights from Vancouver to Victoria but there is a huge population difference.

That and there's also the body of water separating the two without a bridge. Land flying YVR-YYJ can be competitive with the Ferry, sea planes and Helijet if you're travelling from near YVR to near YYJ. But YYJ-YVR is still mostly connections. It's nothing like the Easter or Western triangles in 'normal' times.

casper Dec 9, 2021 5:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dominion301 (Post 9472334)
That and there's also the body of water separating the two without a bridge. Land flying YVR-YYJ can be competitive with the Ferry, sea planes and Helijet if you're travelling from near YVR to near YYJ. But YYJ-YVR is still mostly connections. It's nothing like the Easter or Western triangles in 'normal' times.

The issue with YYJ-YVR is YWH-CXH. For the cost of a YYJ-YVR ticket and a ham sandwich you can get a ticket for YWH-CXH. Basically it does not cost much more to fly form Victoria Harbour to Vancouver Harbour by float plane or Helicopter. That sets up YYJ-YVR to be mostly about connecting traffic.

peytol Dec 9, 2021 7:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ned (Post 9471719)
It sounds like Castlegar is on track to implement a Required Navigation Performance (RNP) approach, something that they have been working on for multiple years. The Castlegar News reported that the City of Castlegar has submitted the GPS landing procedure to the regulator for approval recently. https://www.castlegarnews.com/news/c...-for-approval/ The minimum cloud ceiling for takeoff and landing could be lowered from 3,000 feet to 1,000 feet according to the airport master plan, greatly improving reliability in the winter where I believe some months have a success rate at around 50 percent. The airport has one of the most challenging instrument approaches in North America, coupled with frequent poor visibility in the winter months. Air Canada (Jazz) is already running Q400’s into Castlegar which are RNP compatible and I believe they are using RNP approaches at other airports. The City expects approvals will be granted in 2022 and will be ready for an airline by 2023. This is great news for citizens and tourists (many that would probably be interested in skiing Red Mountain or Whitewater), especially considering that it sounds like the winter highway conditions can often be challenging.


Currently Jazz does not fly RNP approaches, not sure if thats in the works or not. Encore and the Q400 are only certified for RNP .3 minimums, this approach would require RNP .1 no doubt. I believe that they are working on getting the Q certified for .1, but no idea how long away that could be.

Denscity Dec 9, 2021 8:32 PM

Wow and another brand new person discussing my airport.
Welcome

ned Dec 9, 2021 10:49 PM

The article https://www.castlegarnews.com/news/c...-for-approval/ has some interesting points that sound hopeful for the approval of the RNP procedure for Castlegar. Before, the City used uncertain language if RNP would be a reality (see https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/briti...ters-1.5001341). Now they sound more certain, saying they are expecting approval in 2022. The City hired GE/Naverus to complete the RNP procedures and to provide "co-ordination and direction with stakeholders at Nav Canada and Transport Canada". However, it would require exemptions (I believe similar RNP approaches have been approved in the United States) and I don't know what is going on behind the scenes. Denscity, do you have any information on the dialogue happening with the regulatory authorities and if that is looking positive? And no, I am not from Castlegar. I have found this subject interesting and wondered what it would take to get more ski tourists to the area. I have been following it the last couple of years and wanted to generate some discussion on the topic.

BenYOW Dec 9, 2021 11:46 PM

Some interesting news is coming out of Kingston Airport (CYGK). After losing their Air Canada services in 2020 and the brief stint of FlyGTA operating to Toronto, Pascan Aviation will be operating a new route to Montreal (CYUL) as of March 12, 2022. Flights will operate 3x daily Mon - Fri and 2x daily Sat - Sun on the Saab 340, with interlining provided on Air Canada and Air Transat tickets.

After the considerable investment that the City of Kingston made in upgrading their terminal building and extending Runway 01-19, I hope this service gains traction.

Source

Quote:

KINGSTON — A Quebec-based regional airline is to begin flying in and out of Kingston Airport early next year.

Pascan Aviation, one of the largest independent regional airlines in Eastern Canada, is to begin flying from Kingston three times a day (6:10 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.) from Monday to Friday and twice a day (11:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.) on Saturday and Sunday, beginning in mid March.

The airline is to also offer connections with Air Canada and Air Transat flights.

The airline’s announcement comes almost a year since the city issued a call for airlines interested in serving the community.

“I’m thrilled to welcome Pascan to Kingston. Air service has been impacted across the globe as a result of the pandemic and Kingston was no exception,” Mayor Bryan Paterson said.

“Now is the time to build new partnerships and begin exploring new opportunities for air travel, and this partnership is the beginning of a new season for air travel. It will help our economic recovery efforts and will provide a fast and convenient travel link to and from the city.”

Pascan operates a fleet of six 33-seat SAAB340B+ aircraft and six 19-seat Jetstream32 aircraft and is to add the 50-seat SAAB2000 in the next year.

The airline currently serves destinations in Montreal (Saint-Hubert and Dorval), Quebec City, Bagotville, Mont-Joli, Bonaventure, Magdalen Island, Baie-Comeau, Sept-Iles, Gaspe and Wabush in Labrador.

Kingston is to be the airline’s first Ontario destination.

“Adding Kingston to our list of destinations is the most exciting thing we have done in years,” Julian Roberts, chief executive officer of Pascan, said.

“The market is here: people need options for travel, and we are very proud to become that option. With our interline agreements with Air Canada and Air Transat, we are proud to say we will be bringing Kingston to the world, and the world to Kingston.”

The airline has about 90 commercial flights per day and carries more than 8,000 passengers per month.

Kingston was among the communities to which Air Canada cut service last year as the national airline refocused on larger routes.

But the upheaval in the airline sector caused by the COVID-19 pandemic also created opportunities to find new partners to foster the city’s tourism and economic development goals, said Craig Desjardins, acting commissioner of corporate services.

“Being able to get to Montreal — Montreal is a beautiful city — but it is really the connectivity that going to Dorval has with the rest of the world,” Desjardins said. “The ultimate goal is to get people where they want to go.”

Montreal-Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport in Dorval offers almost the same number of domestic and international connecting flights as Pearson International Airport in Toronto does, but the Montreal airport has more capacity, which should reduce the cost and the number of cancelled or delayed flight to and from Kingston, he said.

“You can get to 95 per cent of the destinations out of Montreal as you can from Toronto,” he said.

“It’s a new orientation for Kingston passengers — we are so used to going west,” said Lakeside District Coun. Wayne Hill, chair of the city’s airport advisory committee.

“But this connection to Montreal provides air travellers from Kingston all the options that were available in Toronto: connections to the rest of Canada, access to all the major European, international and southern destinations.”

Denscity Dec 9, 2021 11:54 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ned (Post 9472628)
The article https://www.castlegarnews.com/news/c...-for-approval/ has some interesting points that sound hopeful for the approval of the RNP procedure for Castlegar. Before, the City used uncertain language if RNP would be a reality (see https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/briti...ters-1.5001341). Now they sound more certain, saying they are expecting approval in 2022. The City hired GE/Naverus to complete the RNP procedures and to provide "co-ordination and direction with stakeholders at Nav Canada and Transport Canada". However, it would require exemptions (I believe similar RNP approaches have been approved in the United States) and I don't know what is going on behind the scenes. Denscity, do you have any information on the dialogue happening with the regulatory authorities and if that is looking positive? And no, I am not from Castlegar. I have found this subject interesting and wondered what it would take to get more ski tourists to the area. I have been following it the last couple of years and wanted to generate some discussion on the topic.

I don't have any inside details but someone at the city did sis make it sounds like they have finally figured things out regarding our infamous landing issues. Was surprised to hear that they had hired a private company to map out the valley.

thenoflyzone Dec 9, 2021 11:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BenYOW (Post 9472672)
Some interesting news is coming out of Kingston Airport (CYGK). After losing their Air Canada services in 2020 and the brief stint of FlyGTA operating to Toronto, Pascan Aviation will be operating a new route to Montreal (CYUL) as of March 12, 2022. Flights will operate 3x daily Mon - Fri and 2x daily Sat - Sun on the Saab 340, with interlining provided on Air Canada and Air Transat tickets.

After the considerable investment that the City of Kingston made in upgrading their terminal building and extending Runway 01-19, I hope this service gains traction.

Source

Interesting development.

Air Creebec has a Dash-8 that does YUL-YGK-YMO and back several times a week. I don't know if they sell seats on YUL-YGK or not. I know the plane departs the GA section of YUL, not from the main passenger terminal.

https://www.flightradar24.com/data/flights/yn703


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