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With Canadian Border Reopening, Canadian Airlines are Rescheduling Flights

As Canadian officials announced they will reopen the border to U.S.-based flyers starting August 9, 2021, carriers are lining up to resume service to the states. Air Canada says they will resume flying to 34 destinations, while other airlines see it as a very positive move.

Now that flyers have a date when Canada will welcome U.S.-based travelers once again, Canadian airlines are rushing to offer flights across the northern border. On August 9, 2021, Canada will welcome back fully vaccinated travelers from the United States, leaving Air Canada and others to resume normal travel.

Air Canada Adds Flights, While WestJet and Porter Look Forward to New Opportunities

Of the nation’s major air carriers, Air Canada is the first to announced resumed flights between the U.S. and Canada. CTV News reports the flag carrier will resume flights to 34 U.S. destinations on 55 routes, adding as many as 220 daily flights across the border. In addition, regular food and beverage services will resume for international flights between the two countries longer than two hours.

WestJet, the second-largest Canadian airline and joint venture partner with Delta Air Lines, has not yet committed to adding more flights. However, a spokesperson for the company told Reuters the news is “a significant and positive step forward,” even after the carrier’s July 2021 capacity dropped by 40 percent compared to the same time in 2019. WestJet’s comments come after CBC News reports the carrier changed direction on their COVID-19 refund policy and will start granting refunds to those who qualify.

Although Porter Airlines is the smallest of the three carriers, leaders for the carrier say they are preparing to expand operations to the United States after ordering 30 Embraer E195 jets. Travel Weekly reports the carrier will restart flights between Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (YTZ) and four destination on the U.S. East Coast, while eyeing further expansion across the country.

“We get to add what a lot of Canadians demand, which is those fun destinations,” Porter chief commercial officer Kevin Jackson told Travel Weekly. “Canadians love to go to Florida. They love to go to Arizona and Vegas. So, we’re going to get to add these leisure markets in the southern part of the United States, and we also have plans to look at the Caribbean and Mexico.”

U.S. May Not Follow Canada’s Lead on Border Opening

While airlines are getting ready to welcome back travelers, those crossing by ground borders may not be able to resume border crossings anytime soon. According to Reuters, White House spokesperson Jen Psaki did not comment on if the U.S. will follow Canada’s lead in re-opening land crossings starting on August 9, 2021.

yjc281 July 30, 2021

Family trip to Canada is still impossible as most younger kids cannot take vaccine and probably should not anyway.

drvannostren July 25, 2021

Another box checked, as a fully vaxxed canadian, the only things missing now are A) re-opening the land border, I'd like to be able to drive across freely as we used to not just fly and B) being able to fly without testing. Ok no problem on the obligatory tests when coming from abroad, just to be on the safe side, but if you have your proof of vaccination and coming from a "trusted" or "green list" type country, there really shouldn't be a need for a pre-flight test AND an arrival test. These tests are $175-250 in Canada for PCR and like $85-120 for Antigen, if we want the industry to recover, people can't be asked to pay airfare + anywhere from 175-300+ extra for two tests.

FMDXR July 21, 2021

Even if they don't resume on August 9th, am confident that there will be enough pressure that the US border will open to Canadian tourists soon. Of course, US drivers will be headed to Canada on the 9th.