Canada’s airports reporting growth of 6% in 2014; Air Canada grows European offering, WestJet heading for Glasgow this summer

Europe here we come! Cakes, ribbons and speeches were all part of the route launch celebrations as Air Canada and its subsidiary Air Canada rouge launched new services in June 2014 from Toronto Pearson Airport to Lisbon (Portugal), Manchester (UK) and Milan Malpensa (Italy). This has helped Canada’s busiest airport to grow its international (non-US) demand by 7.5% in the first 10 months of 2014.

Latest passenger figures for 10 of Canada’s busiest airports, reveal that demand is up over 6% in the first nine months of 2014, representing significant improvement on the growth reported in 2012 and 2013. In 2012 passenger numbers at Canada’s main airports grew by just 3.7%, while in 2013 the growth rate declined to just 2.7%. Since May passenger numbers have been up each month at all of Canada’s main airports.

Chart - Canadian airports traffic development Year-on-year change in monthly passengers: 1/12 to 11/14

Source: Airport websites.

International (non-US) traffic up 15% in Edmonton thanks to Icelandair

The eight busiest Canadian airports all break down their traffic figures into domestic, transborder (US) and international (non-US). A graph of 2014 year-to-date ‘growth’ for each airport by region reveals that domestic traffic is up at all eight airports, with half of them achieving growth of more than 5%. In the transborder market six of the eight airports are reporting growth, led by Vancouver (+9.3%), Edmonton (+9.2%) and Toronto Pearson (+6.6%).

Chart - Top 8 Canadian airports 2014 Year to date change in passenger numbers by region

Source: Airport websites.

International (non-US) traffic is up at seven of the eight airports, with Edmonton reporting impressive double-digit growth of almost 15% in 2014 thanks in part to the launch of Icelandair’s Reykjavik/Keflavik service on 5 March 2014. The top five airports have all reported growth in all three market segments in 2014.

Icelandair introduced non-stop flights from Reykjavik/Keflavik to Edmonton on 5 March 2014. This has helped the Canadian airport to report almost 15% growth in 2014 on non-US international routes.

Amsterdam and Mexico City to get multiple new Canadian services in 2015

The following new international (including US) services have been introduced during the current W14/15 season from Canada’s main airports:

  • Toronto (YYZ): Air Canada to Panama City (17 December) and Rio de Janeiro Galeao (11 December); Air Canada rouge to Honolulu (10 December); Air Transat to San Jose del Cabo (21 February); Cubana to Santiago de Cuba (18 December) and Cayo Largo (20 December); WestJet to Phoenix (26 October).
  • Vancouver (YVR): Air Canada rouge to Palm Springs (19 December) and Phoenix (17 December); Delta Air Lines to Los Angeles (20 December); Sunwing Airlines to Freeport (1 November).
  • Winnipeg (YWG): WestJet to Fort Lauderdale (1 November).

The following new international services have been announced and are scheduled to start operations during S15:

  • Edmonton (YEG): KLM to Amsterdam (3 May).
  • Halifax (YHZ): WestJet to Glasgow (15 May).
  • Montreal (YUL): Air Canada rouge to Mexico City (1 May) and Venice Marco Polo (14 May); Air Transat to Budapest (17 June); Hainan Airlines to Beijing (1 June); Air China to Beijing (28 September).
  • Toronto (YYZ): Aeromexico to Mexico City (4 May); Air Canada to Amsterdam (4 June) and Austin-Bergstrom (18 May); TAM to Sao Paulo Guarulhos (28 March).
  • Vancouver (YVR): Air Canada rouge to Osaka Kansai (1 May); Air France to Paris CDG (29 March).

In addition Air Canada has already announced plans to operate non-stop flights from Toronto to Delhi and Dubai starting in November 2015.


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