Air Canada to introduce non-stop Montréal-Brussels service



    MONTREAL, Aug. 20 /CNW Telbec/ - Air Canada today announced that it will
introduce year-round non-stop service between Montreal and Brussels, with
same-plane service continuing on to/from Toronto. Flights will begin daily,
subject to government approval, in time for summer peak travel on June 12,
2010. Flights on the new Brussels route are timed to offer travellers
convenient connections to Air Canada's extensive North America network via the
carrier's Montreal hub to and from: Toronto (same plane), Ottawa, Québec City,
Halifax, Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Chicago,
Boston, Washington and New York. In Brussels, connecting flights will be
available with future Star Alliance partner Brussels Airlines to/from several
European and African destinations including Toulouse, Lyon and Marseilles,
France; Abidjan, Ivory Coast; Dakar, Senegal; Douala, Cameroun; Bologna and
Milan, Italy; and Porto, Portugal.
    "The introduction of the only year-round non-stop service between
Montréal and Brussels, headquarters of the European Commission and Parliament,
and other international organizations, is great news for customers travelling
on business, for leisure as well as freight forwarders," said Marcel Forget,
Vice President, Network Planning. "Air Canada's new direct non-stop Brussels
service will offer more choice for convenient international travel via our
Montreal hub providing easy access to several destinations in Europe and
Africa."
    Wilfried Van Assche, CEO of Brussels Airport applauds this news: "Both
our business and leisure passengers will be delighted with the year-round Air
Canada service between Montreal and Brussels. The daily connection will be an
asset to the strong links between Belgium and Quebec. This service could not
have come at a better time for Canadian passengers as well: they will now
fully enjoy an attractive Star Alliance network from Brussels to Europe and
Africa."
    "Aéroports de Montréal applauds this new non-stop service as it increases
Montréal-Trudeau's appeal as an efficient hub between Europe and North
America" said James Cherry, president and CEO.
    By next summer Air Canada will offer non stop service between Montréal
and six European gateway cities including London, Paris, Frankfurt, Geneva and
Rome. As well, Air Canada's Star Alliance partners Lufthansa and Swiss
International Air Lines offer service from Montréal to Munich and Zurich
respectively, further increasing connections and travel options.
    Air Canada will operate the new Montreal-Brussels non-stop service using
newly refurbished 211-seat Boeing 767-300 ER aircraft offering a choice of
Economy Class and Executive First service featuring 24 lay flat bed suites.
Further details and a virtual tour of Air Canada's new cabin amenities
including personal seatback entertainment are available at:
http://www.aircanada.com/en/travelinfo/onboard/cabincomfort.html

    
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Flight         Depart         Arrive         Depart         Arrive
                   Toronto        Montréal       Montréal       Brussels
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    AC832          17:00          18:15          19:40          08:40 (+1)
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Flight         Depart         Arrive         Depart         Arrive
                   Brussels       Montréal       Montréal       Toronto
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    AC833          10:45          12:25          14:00          15:15
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------
    

    Montréal-based Air Canada provides scheduled and charter air
transportation for passengers and cargo to more than 170 destinations on five
continents. Canada's flag carrier is the 13th largest commercial airline in
the world and serves 33 million customers annually. 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. Air Canada aircraft offer customers individualized seatback in-flight
entertainment systems with hundreds of hours of digital audio-visual
entertainment. As well, customers can collect Aeroplan miles for future
rewards through Canada's leading loyalty program.
    In 2008, the readers of Business Traveler magazine voted Air Canada "Best
In-Flight Services in North America," "Best Airline for Business Class Service
in North America" and "Best North American Airline for International Travel."


    Backgrounder:

    AIR CANADA AT MONTREAL-TRUDEAU AIRPORT

    Montréal-Trudeau Airport (YUL) is a strategic hub for Air Canada
connecting its Québec and Atlantic Canada domestic network, its U.S.
transborder routes and as an international gateway for Air Canada's services
to and from the Caribbean, Mexico and Europe.
    Air Canada provides service in both of Canada's official languages. As a
fully bilingual operation, YUL plays a special role in connecting Canada with
many French-speaking communities in the world, known as la francophonie, with
service to points throughout Québec and New Brunswick among other, as well as
to and from France (Paris CDG), Switzerland (Geneva), Brussels (Belgium -
summer 2010), Martinique, Guadeloupe and Haiti.
    On August 19, 2009, Montréal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL)
inaugurated a new sector for transborder departures to the United States,
completing the terminal's transformation which began in 2000. The new U.S.
transborder facilities are larger and more customer-friendly, and provide
travellers with a smoother, faster check-in and security clearance experience.
The new two-storey facility is located adjacent to the existing transborder
jetty.

    
    By the numbers - Air Canada at Montréal-Trudeau Airport
    -------------------------------------------------------

    - YUL is Air Canada's third largest hub.
    - Air Canada served more than three million customers at YUL in 2008
    - Air Canada, together with its regional affiliate Jazz, operates more
      than 48,000 flights to/from YUL and 60 destinations (including seasonal
      routes and Air Canada Vacations destinations): 20 destinations in
      Canada, 16 in the United States, 19 in the Caribbean and Mexico, and to
      six European gateways.
    - Air Canada has three Maple Leaf Lounges at YUL:
          - A newly renovated Domestic Maple Leaf Lounge
            Seating capacity of 160; more than 220,000 annual visits in 2008
          - A Transborder Maple Leaf Lounge opened in February 2004
            Seating capacity of 80; more than 75,000 annual visits in 2008
          - An International Maple Leaf Lounge opened in December 2005
            Seating capacity of 110; more than 85,000 annual visits in 2008
    

    By next summer Air Canada will offer non stop service between Montréal
and six European gateway cities including London, Paris, Frankfurt, Geneva and
Rome. As well, Air Canada's Star Alliance partners Lufthansa and Swiss
International Air Lines offer service from Montréal to Munich and Zurich
respectively, further increasing connections and travel options.

    
    Air Canada's U.S. transborder service at Montréal-Trudeau Airport:
    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    - Air Canada serves more destinations in the United States from YUL than
      any other carrier, accounting for about 40 per cent of total scheduled
      carriers' U.S. departures and seats at YUL.
    - Air Canada together with Jazz operates non-stop service to 17
      destinations in the U.S. and will introduce non-stop service to Houston
      on November 30, 2009 for a total of 17 U.S. cities served directly from
      YUL.
    - Air Canada flies non-stop to the most popular U.S. destinations from
      YUL: New York City (LGA), Los Angeles (LAX), San Francisco (SFO),
      Chicago (ORD), Las Vegas (LAS), Orlando (MCO) and Fort Lauderdale
      (FLL).
    - In addition, Air Canada is the only carrier in YUL to fly non-stop to
      Boston (BOS), Denver (DEN), Tampa (TPA), Hartford (BDL), and Washington
      D.C. (DCA)

    Simpler baggage formalities for U.S. flights:
    ---------------------------------------------

    - A new baggage drop-off service located just behind the check-in area is
      now available for passengers travelling to the U.S. It allows customers
      to drop their checked bags off before proceeding to security clearance
      and U.S. customs
    - International and domestic passengers connecting to U.S. flights no
      longer need to pick up their bags before passing through security and
      U.S. customs

    More efficient baggage system:
    ------------------------------

    YUL's new transborder facility uses a state-of-the-art baggage system,
with greatly improved baggage handling capability.

    - Baggage handling capacity has more than tripled from 400 items per hour
      to 1,400 items per hour
    - A new baggage reconciliation system features new bag scanning and
      boarding pass scanning technology. The new scanning technology tracks
      the location of passengers and their bags, improving operational
      efficiency.

    What else is new at Montréal-Trudeau airport's transborder facilities:
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    - The U.S. departures facility has nearly doubled in size from 9,300 to
      18,100 m2.
    - Security checkpoints have doubled from 6 to 12
    - Check-in positions increased from 28 to 48, with Air Canada's positions
      increasing from 12 to 14.
    - U.S. Customs counters increase from 20 to 29
    - A duty free shop, a MEXX outlet and a Houston's Bar and Grill are among
      the many new shops and restaurants.
    - A new 272-room Marriott Hotel connected directly to the airport
      terminal provides visitors to YUL with more choice in accommodations,
      spa and meeting room facilities.
    




For further information:

For further information: Air Canada Contacts: Isabelle Arthur
(Montréal), (514) 422-5788; Peter Fitzpatrick (Toronto), (416) 263-5576;
Angela Mah (Vancouver), (604) 270-5741; Joost Hasperhoven (Belgium), +32 70
220 100; Internet: aircanada.com


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