Air Canada expands transborder flying with launch of new service to four
American cities from Toronto

New flights fortify airline's position as the leading transborder carrier

MONTREAL, May 17 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today launched new twice-daily, year-round service to four American cities, further fortifying its Toronto hub and strengthening its position as the leading transborder carrier with the most daily flights between Canada and the U.S. of any airline.

"The launch today of twice-daily flights from Toronto to Memphis, Cincinnati, Syracuse and Portland, Maine, reinforces Air Canada's position as the leading transborder carrier between Canada and the U.S. and the Number One foreign carrier flying to the United States. We offer the most flights per day to more destinations in the U.S. than any other international airline and the fastest elapsed travel times between the U.S. north-east and Asia," said Ben Smith, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer. "It also underscores our commitment to drive the growth of our Toronto hub.. Air Canada is already the leading carrier at Toronto's Lester B. Pearson International Airport. Centralized in a single terminal with three Maple Leaf Lounges, Air Canada's Toronto hub offers streamlined connections and is the most convenient gateway to and from the U.S., with multiple travel options for passengers flying anywhere in our global network. We are leveraging our hub to make it a global transfer point for domestic, transborder and international travellers."

Today's launch is part of an ongoing strategy to secure Air Canada's leading position in the Canada-U.S. transborder market. Last month, Air Canada launched new service from Toronto to Orange County, CA, and on June 17 it will follow up with new service between Toronto and San Diego, CA, and Portland, Ore. In addition, Air Canada announced this month it will launch in November the only Montreal-Phoenix non-stop flights and will double to twice daily its Toronto-Phoenix service next winter. In addition, Air Canada is increasing by 51 per cent its Toronto-California service this summer, including the introduction of Boeing 767-300 ER service on select flights between Toronto and Los Angeles featuring its industry-leading Executive First lie flat suites.

The four new U.S. transborder routes launched today are:

    
        -------------------------------------------------------------
           Destination        Frequency     Service Provided By
        -------------------------------------------------------------
           Memphis, Tenn      Twice Daily   Air Canada Jazz  CRJ
        -------------------------------------------------------------
           Cincinnati, Ohio   Twice Daily   Air Canada Jazz  CRJ
        -------------------------------------------------------------
           Portland, Maine    Twice Daily   Air Georgian  Beech1900D
        -------------------------------------------------------------
           Syracuse, N.Y.     Twice Daily   Air Georgian  Beech1900D
        -------------------------------------------------------------
    

Air Canada is also adding four new international destinations from Toronto this summer. The airline has announced it will begin flying to Athens, Barcelona, and Copenhagen, and offer same-plane, direct service to Brussels through Montreal. As well, in March it launched a new Calgary-Narita non-stop service.

Air Canada, along with Air Canada Jazz and its Tier Three partners, will offer this summer up to 144 scheduled flights each day to 51 U.S. destinations from its hub in Toronto. In total, this summer Air Canada will operate up to 233 flights per day from six points in Canada to 55 destinations in the U.S. In addition, this summer Air Canada will also serve 30 domestic and 46 international destinations from Toronto.

Air Canada provides scheduled and charter air transportation for passengers and cargo to more than 171 destinations on five continents. Canada's flag carrier is the 13th largest commercial airline in the world and serves 31 million customers annually. Air Canada has an extensive global network, with hubs in four major Canadian cities (Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver and Calgary). As well, customers can collect Aeroplan miles for future rewards through Canada's leading loyalty program Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, providing the world's most comprehensive air transportation network for Canadian domestic, transborder and international travel. Through its strategic and commercial arrangements with Star Alliance(TM) partner airlines (www.staralliance.com), Air Canada offers service to 1,167 destinations in 181 countries and provides reciprocal top tier frequent flyer benefits.

SOURCE Air Canada

For further information: For further information: Isabelle Arthur (Montréal), (514) 422-5788; Peter Fitzpatrick (Toronto), (416) 263-5576; Angela Mah (Vancouver), (604) 270-5741; aircanada.com


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