Sick Children Find Santa Claus in the Sky

Air Transat Gives $850,000 to the Children's Wish Foundation

Pictures available upon request

TORONTO, Dec. 17 /CNW/ - Celebrating its fifth consecutive year, Air Transat's Flight in Search of Santa gave hundreds of lucky children from the Children's Wish Foundation the opportunity to meet Santa Claus at an altitude of more than 8,000 meters today. This special flight departed from Toronto Pearson International Airport at noon and was a cheerful and magical event to the delight of all passengers and crew members on board.

The adventure began this morning as the children and their families arrived at the Air Transat counter at the airport to collect their boarding passes for the North Pole. After a fun celebration attended by a happy gang of elves, approximately 250 passengers climbed aboard an Air Transat Airbus A310 en route to the North Pole. During the 90-minute flight, Santa Claus himself appeared and, in keeping with tradition, handed out presents to the excited children. Similar flights took place in Montreal today and in Vancouver yesterday.

Des Ryan, Air Transat's Vice President In-Flight Services and Commissary, took the opportunity to announce an $850,000 donation to The Children's Wish Foundation. The amount was collected over the past year from Air Transat passengers by the airline's crew as part of the Change for Kids program. Air Transat has been associated with the Foundation since 2004 and has donated more than $4.5 million to date.

"The Foundation is fortunate to count on the support of Air Transat, a platinum partner for four years now," said Linda Marco, Director of Development, The Children's Wish Foundation of Canada. "This event is one of the greatest moments of the year for the Foundation and for the children who participate. We are delighted that Air Transat is there to help us make this unique day possible for these kids, for whom illness is a daily reality."

"Air Transat supports the work of the Children's Wish Foundation and is pleased to be its partner," Mr. Ryan added. "Our employees have chosen to champion this cause because it is aligned with their values and those of Air Transat. They invest time and effort to help make these children's dreams come true. Our customers' contribution is also very important, and we thank them for their outstanding generosity."

The Flight in Search of Santa event has been made possible thanks to the generous collaboration of several partners, including the airports in Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver, which made logistical arrangements, as well as Air Transat employees, who participated on a volunteer basis.

About the Children's Wish Foundation

The Children's Wish Foundation of Canada is a national, grassroots organization dedicated to providing a once in a lifetime experience for children diagnosed with high-risk, life threatening illnesses. The Foundation is the only all-Canadian organization with offices from coast to coast granting wishes for these special children. The standard of personal care and attention given to each wish sets the Foundation apart from any other organization. The Children's Wish Foundation takes pride in the fact that it has never refused an eligible child.

About Air Transat

Air Transat is Canada's leading holiday travel airline. It carries some 3 million passengers annually to nearly 60 destinations in 25 countries. Air Transat has a fleet of 18 Airbus A330s and A310s. The company employs approximately 2,000 people. Air Transat is a subsidiary of Transat A.T. Inc., an integrated international tour operator with more than 60 destination countries and that distributes products in over 50 countries.

    
    Source:

    www.airtransat.com
    www.childrenwish.ca
    

SOURCE Transat A.T. Inc.

For further information: For further information: For Media Inquiries: Jacques Bouchard, Chief Media Relations, Transat A.T. Inc., (514) 987-1660 ext. 4662, Jacques.Bouchard@transat.com; Ana Aujla, Optimum Public Relations, (416) 934-8425, Ana.Aujla@cossette.com; Sandra DeCarvalho, Optimum Public Relations, (416) 306-6792, Sandra.Decarvalho@cossette.com


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