MONTREAL, Feb. 7, 2013 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today announced it will
introduce a new International Premium Economy cabin for customers
seeking enhanced comfort and service on international flights as it
continues to modernize its widebody fleet with the addition of five new
Boeing 777-300ER aircraft.
Introduction of International Premium Economy Cabin
Complementing its Economy and Executive First options on international
flights, Air Canada's new Premium Economy cabin will offer customers a
wide range of benefits including a dedicated cabin featuring larger
seats that are wider, providing more recline, with seven more inches of
legroom than Economy and are never more than one seat from the aisle
(due to a 2-4-2 configuration). Customers will also be offered premium
meals with complimentary bar service and priority check-in and baggage
delivery at the airport. More information on Air Canada's new Premium
Economy cabin is available at www.aircanada.com/premiumeconomy.
Air Canada's Premium Economy cabin will be introduced on Air Canada's
Montreal-Paris flights effective July 11, 2013. Additional routes
offering Premium Economy will be added over time as new aircraft enter
the carrier's mainline fleet.
International Fleet Expands and Modernizes
Air Canada will expand and modernize its international widebody fleet
with the addition of five new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. In addition to
two Boeing 777-300ER aircraft previously announced that will be
delivered in June and August 2013, Air Canada today announced that it
will add three new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft to be delivered in
November and December 2013 and February 2014. With the addition of
these five aircraft, Air Canada's Boeing 777 fleet will consist of 23
aircraft comprising the latest generation of 300ER and 200LR models.
"With the introduction of Premium Economy, Air Canada will begin
offering customers a new, high-value option for enhanced comfort and
service on international flights," said Ben Smith, Executive Vice
President and Chief Commercial Officer. "The delivery of five new
Boeing 777-300ER aircraft over the next 12 months provides us with the
right opportunity to launch a new cabin of service that will be offered
on more of our international flights over time as we take delivery of
new 787 aircraft. We will continue to adapt our product to ensure our
customers have competitive options to choose from - whether traveling
on Air Canada mainline routes or with our leisure carrier, Air Canada rouge, to its vacation destinations."
Competitive International Products
Air Canada's five new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft will be the first
aircraft configured with the carrier's new Premium Economy cabin prior
to the arrival of Boeing 787 aircraft scheduled to begin delivery in
2014. The five Boeing 777-300ER aircraft will also offer a larger
Economy cabin as Air Canada will strategically deploy these aircraft on
select international markets with high volume demand for economy
"In today's highly-competitive industry environment, it is critical to
continue developing new products and refresh existing ones in order to
ensure we offer customers the product features to meet their needs on a
market-by-market basis," said Mr. Smith. "We're looking forward to
introducing our first new Boeing 777-300ER with Premium Economy on our
Montreal-Paris route beginning in July 2013."
Air Canada's Premium Economy seats on its Montreal-Paris flights are now
available for purchase, as are Premium rouge seats on Air Canada rouge flights to European vacation destinations: Edinburgh, Venice and
Athens. Visit www.aircanada.com for details.
Continued Mr. Smith, "As these new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft enter our
fleet over the next year, we will continue to deploy these five
aircraft on routes in our international network where market demand
calls for a larger supply of Economy and Premium Economy seats, in
addition to continuing to offer Executive First business class service.
"The introduction of these Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in our fleet and
launch of Air Canada's new Premium Economy cabin on the Montreal-Paris
route will allow us to compete effectively in a market with high demand
for economy travel that is served by both international network and
charter carriers. We are confident Air Canada's Economy and Premium
Economy options will distinguish themselves as fresher and more
appealing, in addition to offering our award-winning Executive First
service featuring lie-flat beds," concluded Mr. Smith.
The five Boeing 777-300ER aircraft that will begin delivery in June 2013
will be configured with a larger Economy cabin with 398 new "slimline"
leather seats providing 31-inch legroom consistent with the comfort of
Air Canada's current Economy cabin, while the dedicated Premium Economy
cabin of 24 leather seats will provide 38-inch legroom along with other
enhanced comfort features. Air Canada's Executive First cabin will
offer 36 seats that convert into 180-degree lie-flat beds in a
staggered configuration of one or two, to allow customers traveling
alone or with a companion to choose their preferred seating and
sleeping options. Customers in all three cabins of service will enjoy
an enhanced individual seat back in-flight entertainment system with
hundreds of hours of complimentary audio visual entertainment options
featuring larger screens and customer-friendly technology by Panasonic.
Fleet Modernization to Continue with Introduction of Boeing 787
In addition to the introduction of Premium Economy, new seats and a
leading edge entertainment system, Air Canada's five new Boeing
777-300ER aircraft will provide customers with a refreshed interior
colour palette in modern, neutral tones unique to these aircraft
pending the official launch of Air Canada's future in-flight product
and cabin design that will be made in conjunction with the introduction
of Boeing 787 aircraft into its fleet.
Air Canada's 37 Boeing 787 aircraft will feature a brand new, enhanced
version of Air Canada's award-winning Executive First lie-flat beds and
product that has yet to be announced, in addition to Premium Economy
and Economy options. The Boeing 787 fleet will be deployed on the
carrier's current and future high premium demand international routes.
About Air Canada
Air Canada is Canada's largest domestic and international airline
serving more than 175 destinations on five continents. Canada's flag
carrier is the 15th largest commercial airline in the world and in 2012
served close to 35 million customers. Air Canada provides scheduled
passenger service directly to 59 Canadian cities, 55 destinations in
the United States and 64 cities in Europe, the Middle East, Asia,
Australia, the Caribbean, Mexico and South America. Air Canada is a
founding member of Star Alliance, the world's most comprehensive air
transportation network serving 1,329 destinations in 194 countries.
Air Canada customers can collect Aeroplan miles for future rewards
through Canada's leading loyalty program, and Top Tier members enjoy
reciprocal frequent flyer benefits including lounge and priority
Air Canada is the only international network carrier in North America to
receive a Four-Star ranking according to independent U.K. research firm
Skytrax. In 2012, Air Canada was ranked for a third consecutive year
"Best International Airline in North America" in a worldwide survey of
more than 18 million airline passengers conducted by Skytrax.
According to the 2012 Canadian Business Travel Survey conducted by
Ipsos Reid, Air Canada was the preferred airline for more than 79
percent of frequent business travellers in Canada. In 2012, readers of
Global Traveler magazine voted Air Canada "Best Airline in North America," the readers
of Business Traveler voted Air Canada "Best North American Airline for International Travel"
and "Best In-Flight Services in North America," and the readers of Premier Traveler voted Air Canada "Best North American Airline for Business Class
Service," "Best North American Airline for International Travel" and
"Best Flight Attendants in North America." For more information on Air
Canada visit aircanada.com and follow @AirCanada on Twitter and Facebook.
Attention Photo Editors: A high resolution image of Air Canada's new Premium Economy seat is
available for downloading at: http://www.aircanada.com/en/about/media/facts/premium_economy.html
CAUTION REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION
Air Canada's public communications may include forward-looking
statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws.
Forward-looking statements, by their nature, are based on assumptions
and are subject to important risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking
statements cannot be relied upon due to, amongst other things, changing
external events and general uncertainties of the business. Actual
results may differ materially from results indicated in forward-looking
statements due to a number of factors, including without limitation,
industry, market, credit and economic conditions, the ability to reduce
operating costs and secure financing, pension issues, energy prices,
employee and labour relations, currency exchange and interest rates,
competition, war, terrorist acts, epidemic diseases, environmental
factors (including weather systems and other natural phenomena and
factors arising from man-made sources), insurance issues and costs,
changes in demand due to the seasonal nature of the business, supply
issues, changes in laws, regulatory developments or proceedings,
pending and future litigation and actions by third parties as well as
the factors identified throughout Air Canada's public disclosure file
available at www.sedar.com. Any forward-looking statements contained in this news release
represent Air Canada's expectations as of date of this news release and
are subject to change after such date. However, Air Canada disclaims
any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking
statements whether as a result of new information, future events or
otherwise, except as required under applicable securities regulations.
SOURCE: AIR CANADA
For further information:
Isabelle Arthur (Montréal) 514 422-5788
Peter Fitzpatrick (Toronto) 416 263-5576
Angela Mah (Vancouver) 604 270-5741
Internet : aircanada.com