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Possible New Long Haul Air Canada Routes in the next 5 years

Possible New Long Haul Air Canada Routes in the next 5 years

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Old Oct 11, 18, 8:10 pm
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Possible New Long Haul Air Canada Routes in the next 5 years

What new long haul AC routes may we see in the next 5 or so years? AC currently operates 6 767, 25 777, 35 787 (+2 on order), and 8 A330 (+4 on order), which is a fairly large and very capable long haul fleet.

Could we see any of the following routes?

YYC - HKG

YYC - PVG

YYC - PEK

YVR - KUL

YVR - CGK

YVR - SIN (either AC operated or SQ operated & AC codeshare)

YUL - MXP (If Milan and Cortina díAmpezzo win the 2026 Olympic Bid, this route could reasonably come to fruition)

If AC decided to purchase the A350-900 ULR they would be able to operate routes like YYZ-SYD and YVR-CPT (even if itís only twice a week or something) which could be quite successful.

None of the routes mentioned have any nonstop flight, meaning the addition of one would be beneficial for AC and *A. The 3 YYC to China routes would be very high demand, and the routes from YVR into Southeast Asia could prove quite successful with lots of Canadian tourists opting for trips to the region.

Do you think any of these routes are possible? Any other long haul routes you think are more likely/needed beforehand?
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Old Oct 11, 18, 8:26 pm
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Originally Posted by MicSanToro View Post
What new long haul AC routes may we see in the next 5 or so years? AC currently operates 6 767, 25 777, 35 787 (+2 on order), and 8 A330 (+4 on order), which is a fairly large and very capable long haul fleet.

Could we see any of the following routes?

YYC - HKG

YYC - PVG

YYC - PEK

YVR - KUL

YVR - CGK

YVR - SIN (either AC operated or SQ operated & AC codeshare)

YUL - MXP (If Milan and Cortina d’Ampezzo win the 2026 Olympic Bid, this route could reasonably come to fruition)

If AC decided to purchase the A350-900 ULR they would be able to operate routes like YYZ-SYD and YVR-CPT (even if it’s only twice a week or something) which could be quite successful.

None of the routes mentioned have any nonstop flight, meaning the addition of one would be beneficial for AC and *A. The 3 YYC to China routes would be very high demand, and the routes from YVR into Southeast Asia could prove quite successful with lots of Canadian tourists opting for trips to the region.

Do you think any of these routes are possible? Any other long haul routes you think are more likely/needed beforehand?



From my understanding, AC wants SIN and BKK for the cargo, especially SIN. All those ships in the Straits, all that cargo...

Tourists are not big money-makers IMHO. That's partly what rouge is for.

Also, some very interesting discussion right now on the UA forum on the SIN routes as operated by UA and SQ. (because UA cancelled their LAX-SIN, added a second SFO-SIN and currently in the air, the new SQ22 A359-ULR, enroute from SIN-EWR). Fascinating discussion on who the customers are, what industries, corporate fares vs "rack rates" and who partners with whom. I've met some Canadian biz pax who fly SQ SFO-SIN and it is very interesting to hear why they do that route and their opinion of SQ compared to an AC offering from YVR.

AC is not buying A359s when they spent all that money building their fleet with the B788s and B789s. IMHO.

Anyway, you asked some interesting questions. Thanks.


EDIT to Add: There are people on this forum who know significantly more than me and will likely have different opinions. Makes for great fun at parties.
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Old Oct 11, 18, 8:34 pm
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YVR SIN is the only new SE Asia route I see happening with any certainty. Business traffic and cargo are both there unlike the developing world capitals (CGK, KUL, MNL, etc.)

Any new long haul out of YYC is a non-starter unless market conditions change significantly, IMO.

I could also see a seasonal YVR AKL for the tourist rush on Rouge, but they don't have an aircraft that could operate it.
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Old Oct 11, 18, 9:21 pm
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Originally Posted by 24left View Post
Also, some very interesting discussion right now on the UA forum on the SIN routes as operated by UA and SQ. (because UA cancelled their LAX-SIN, added a second SFO-SIN and currently in the air, the new SQ22 A359-ULR, enroute from SIN-EWR). Fascinating discussion on who the customers are, what industries, corporate fares vs "rack rates" and who partners with whom. I've met some Canadian biz pax who fly SQ SFO-SIN and it is very interesting to hear why they do that route and their opinion of SQ compared to an AC offering from YVR.
I do a lot of travelling for work (my average month is about 2 weeks in Toronto, a week in either San Fran or NYC, and a week travelling elsewhere, mostly Vancouver, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, London, or Dubai - it's hectic) so I've flown SQ SFO-SIN multiple times. Their J product is pretty good on the A350, but far inferior to their A380 F. When I'm going to Singapore and I have time, I prefer to fly CX F from SFO to HKG to SIN, as CX F is a far better product than SQ J, and I can accomplish things with clients in Hong Kong on a trip I'd be taking regardless to get to Singapore. An AC YVR-SIN flight would be really helpful when I'm in a time crunch to be in Singapore (coming from Toronto) and don't have time to go via HKG. I also prefer AC's new Signature Class over SQ's J. I'm sure I'll end up having to fly EWR-SIN sometime in the future when I'm in NYC and need to get to SIN but don't have time to stop in SFO. I don't look forward to it, but what can you really do.


Originally Posted by 24left View Post

AC is not buying A359s when they spent all that money building their fleet with the B788s and B789s. IMHO.

Anyway, you asked some interesting questions. Thanks.
Makes sense, but it's unfortunate. YYZ to SYD direct would be a blessing and YVR to CPT direct would be an interesting route (and I do believe the only route from the west coast direct to South Africa)

Originally Posted by eigenvector View Post
Any new long haul out of YYC is a non-starter unless market conditions change significantly, IMO.
I totally see where you are coming from but I'd disagree by saying that there are two large links between Calgary and China, the first being Oil & Gas business connections (which brings lots of premium passengers), and the second being the hordes of (often well off) Chinese tourists who flock to Banff. I think AC operating non-stop between YYC and any 2 of HKG/PVG/PEK with the 787 2-3 times weekly could be quite profitable.

Originally Posted by eigenvector View Post
I could also see a seasonal YVR AKL for the tourist rush on Rouge, but they don't have an aircraft that could operate it.
ANZ flies YVR to AKL and they are *A so I can't see AC also taking that route, although a seasonal double up (where both ANZ and AC do the route) could make sense.

Last edited by MicSanToro; Oct 11, 18 at 9:49 pm Reason: Added an additional reply to another commenter
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Old Oct 11, 18, 10:03 pm
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Originally Posted by eigenvector View Post
Any new long haul out of YYC is a non-starter unless market conditions change significantly, IMO.
Agreed. Plus if there are any new international routes out of YYC itíll likely be WS since they seem to be making YYC their 787 hub (at least initially).
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Old Oct 11, 18, 10:20 pm
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Originally Posted by eigenvector View Post
YVR SIN is the only new SE Asia route I see happening with any certainty. Business traffic and cargo are both there unlike the developing world capitals (CGK, KUL, MNL, etc.)
There isn't a sustainable route between CGK or KUL to anywhere in the United States, I can't imagine there could be one to YVR.
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Old Oct 11, 18, 10:37 pm
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Yvr-eze, yvr-scl? Yvr-gru?

I'm thinking a combination of mining worker/manager/executive traffic from Vancouver, and of course, for the onwards connections to Asia. Which are still more diverse at YVR than at YYZ. And USA avoidance, of course, which probably will grow as a desire going forward.
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Last edited by pitz; Oct 11, 18 at 10:47 pm
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Old Oct 11, 18, 11:10 pm
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Originally Posted by vroom View Post
There isn't a sustainable route between CGK or KUL to anywhere in the United States, I can't imagine there could be one to YVR.
I probably don't have a clue what I'm talking about, but I would think that running a direct flight between two large population centres (Kuala Lumpur is 7.2 million, Jakarta is 30.2 million [more than twice that of Bangkok which is 14 million]) and Vancouver (2.5 million), even if it's only once weekly, when there is not a single competitor on the route, would be a financially smart decision for an airline. If AC ran the only direct route between KUL and a North American airport and CGK and a North American airport, I would think those flights would be full.

Originally Posted by pitz View Post
yvr-scl?
Yes, please. I mean, both times I've been to Santiago I've flown out of YYZ as it's my home airport and the only place AC flies to SCL from, but I think a YVR-SCL route would be good.

Last edited by MicSanToro; Oct 11, 18 at 11:18 pm
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Old Oct 11, 18, 11:27 pm
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Originally Posted by MicSanToro View Post
YYC - HKG
YYC - PVG
YYC - PEK
We can dream about another Asia flight ex-YYC from AC, but right now I'd settle for maintaining YYC-NRT even seasonally; a winter return would be fantastic. AC has rapidly expanded for the past several years and has only cut, not expanded international service from YYC. Instead the big winner has been YUL. They have had lots of opportunity and just don't seem to be investing - everything is going out of YVR/YYZ/YUL.

YYC-PEK is serviced by HU and I'd say PVG/HKG is more likely for WS once they decide which new markets they want and can get slots for. So, I wish - but I'll be surprised if it happens.
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Old Oct 12, 18, 6:23 am
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How about YUL-DSS? Two large French speaking centres... Yeah, I know, it is wishful thinking.
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Old Oct 12, 18, 7:01 am
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Originally Posted by MicSanToro View Post
I probably don't have a clue what I'm talking about, but I would think that running a direct flight between two large population centres (Kuala Lumpur is 7.2 million, Jakarta is 30.2 million [more than twice that of Bangkok which is 14 million]) and Vancouver (2.5 million), even if it's only once weekly, when there is not a single competitor on the route, would be a financially smart decision for an airline. If AC ran the only direct route between KUL and a North American airport and CGK and a North American airport, I would think those flights would be full.
Ah, the last line is key. A full flight is not always a profitable flight. Otherwise a YVR-MNL would be a shoe-in. You have to have a flight that makes money, not that fills seats. Premium traffic and premium fares is key. If everyone wants a basic fare and is not willing to pay for Business Class, it will not make money. You can't just say KUL is 7million and CGK is 30million and say, whoa, we need a flight there. Are these people flying? Are they paying high yield fares? These are the questions to ask. And I don't know of any Air Canada overseas route that operates once weekly; it just does not make sense.
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Old Oct 12, 18, 11:18 am
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i was on one of the last SQ flights from YVR-SIN (which used to stop over in ICN) many years ago. they werent making money on that route. the 787/A350 might change some of the economics. BKK is a large tourist market, unlike CGK/KUL regardless of population. I see a lot of Canadian mining people on CGK flights but doubt there is enough demand for a direct flight.
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Old Oct 12, 18, 11:22 am
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Would love to see more South America routes out of YUL, would most probably be Rouge I imagine.
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Old Oct 12, 18, 11:26 am
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I cant see ac buying the A350 just to fill a couple potential routes. What if the routes flop, then you are stuck with the aircraft. I dont think there is any market filled by the 350 that cant also be filled with a variant of the 777 which ac already operates a bunch of these craft.
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Old Oct 12, 18, 11:45 am
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Originally Posted by 24left
From my understanding, AC wants SIN and BKK for the cargo, especially SIN.
Originally Posted by eigenvector
YVR SIN is the only new SE Asia route I see happening with any certainty.
This route is a matter of 'when not if'. Negotiations are ongoing between the airport, local boards of trade, governments and airlines (plural, as in, not just AC). Hopefully not Scoot.

Originally Posted by pitz
Yvr-eze, yvr-scl? Yvr-gru?
One of the above is another shoo-in. Look to more YVR-west coast South America nonstops in the future as well.
Originally Posted by MicSanToro
ANZ flies YVR to AKL and they are *A so I can't see AC also taking that route, although a seasonal double up (where both ANZ and AC do the route) could make sense.
Being a Star partner is not a barrier; we already see YVR to FRA, PEK, TPE, TYO as well as SFO/LAX/DEN/ORD operated by two Alliance members. Agree with eigenvector in that this is more of a Rougey route; business connections to AKL are modest, and near non-existent to Wellington or Christchurch.

Originally Posted by YXUFlyboy
AC has rapidly expanded for the past several years and has only cut, not expanded international service from YYC.
Agree. YYC will struggle to maintain its existing long haul routes, with the exception of perhaps LHR.

Originally Posted by YYC009
A full flight is not always a profitable flight. Otherwise a YVR-MNL would be a shoe-in.
And it is a shoo-in....for PR. Given that one of the daily flights from MNL - that connects onward to JFK - will disappear thanks to the A359, I can fares rising on this route and becoming even more so. AC could operate the flight as PR does (and as they currently operate their Australia service): as a through-flight from a big eastern market.

Originally Posted by karachi
i was on one of the last SQ flights from YVR-SIN (which used to stop over in ICN) many years ago. they werent making money on that route.
Well, they were, but mainly on the YVR-ICN fifth-freedom portion. Agree the O&D traffic between YVR and SIN at the time was weak, even though it used to include this sole flyer.
Whatever payload UA can carry in the belly of their 789 to/from SFO, AC can carry 400nm worth of fuel more.
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