Air Canada is set to reconnect with the US, reintroducing routes and operating up to 220 daily flights between the countries, in light of eased border restrictions.
The carrier announced on Monday its summer trans-border schedule, which includes 55 routes to 34 destinations in the US, with up to 220 flights between the US and Canada per day.
The news follows the countries agreeing to ease border restrictions after Canada reached its vaccination goals and continues to decline in COVID-19 infections.
From 9 August, Canada will open its border to American citizens and permanent residents who have received two doses of the vaccine for non-essential travel, and will not be required to quarantine.
According to the airline’s senior vice president, network planning and revenue management, Mark Galardo, all 57 od its pre-pandemic US destinations will be restored as “conditions allow”.
“The easing of travel restrictions announced today by the federal government is an important step based on science, and we are very pleased to rebuild our Canada-US network,” he said.
“Our schedule also enables convenient onward travel through our Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal hubs to and from our global destinations.”
Its commercial schedule will include flights between Montreal, Toronto, Vancouver, and Calgary to the US.
Most destinations under the new schedule range between three flights per week up to two flights per day, however some of the more popular routes, will operate up to 35 flights per week.
Flight from Montreal to Chicago and LaGuardia, as well as flights from Vancouver to Los Angeles and San Francisco will all operate 21 times per week, according to Air Canada, as will Toronto to Boston.
Flights from Toronto to a slew of destinations, including Chicago, Houston Los Angeles, LaGuardia, Newark, and Washington Dulles will all operate up to 35 times per week.
Under the new rules, vaccinated travellers must upload a negative PCR test, taken within 72 hours of their flight, to the Air Canada app, which validates the test through a scanning system.
Canada’s infection rate has continued to decrease over the last few months, seeing daily cases drop from 8,000 in April to between 300-800 in July.
A total of 49.9 per cent of the population has been fully vaccinated, with 45.3 million doses given. Canada is expected to receive over 7 million doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine this week.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said earlier borders would not open until 75 per cent of the population had received at least one jab, and the goal was reached in late June.
The move marks a huge recovery effort from Air Canada, as the airline saw a net loss of US$4.65 billion in 2020.