Yukon residents flying to Calgary this summer will have no problem choosing which airline to travel with. Air Canada has cancelled its flight to the city, leaving Air North as the sole provider of direct flights from Whitehorse to Calgary.
Air Canada offered two daily flights between those cities from last May to October. But the route didn’t perform as well as the company hoped and they were cancelled, spokesperson Angela Mah said in an email. The company made the decision early this year.
Flights were available for booking this summer, and Air Canada tried to wait as long as possible before making this decision, hoping more people would book flights, said Mah. Customers who had booked these flights were told about the change before their travel dates.
This change does not surprise Air North’s president, Joe Sparling. “In the long run, it’s healthy for everyone in the market,” he said. There were too many empty seats flying in and out of Whitehorse last summer, said Sparling. In the end, customers end up paying for those empty seats, he said.
The cancellation of the flight to Calgary isn’t the only change for Air Canada flights out of Whitehorse this year. Last summer, it offered three daily flights to Vancouver with a total of 197 seats. This year, it will offer two flights with a total of 194 seats.
The company reviews routes regularly, said Mah. It considers service demand and economic factors, including aircraft availability and fuel prices when making its decisions, she said.