Air North, Yukon’s Airline, celebrates new direct connection to Toronto
Air North, Yukon’s Airline, has celebrated a new, twice-weekly direct connection to Toronto Pearson Airport. It is Canada’s first-ever scheduled direct service between Whitehorse, Yellowknife and Toronto. Passengers on the inaugural service were met by a special event at Toronto Pearson International Airport, celebrating its cultural and economic significance.
The seasonal route is expected to not only expand tourism and business travel to the territories, but holds particular significance to the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation, from Old Crow, Yukon, who own 49% of Air North, Yukon’s Airline. This route will be a necessary means for economic growth, and an important cultural and personal link.
To celebrate the inaugural flight, Premier of the Yukon, Sandy Silver, and the Yukon’s Minister of Economic Development, Tourism and Culture Ranj Pillai, attended the Toronto Pearson Airport event along with Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation Councillor Bonnee Bingham. Attendees were treated to a special performance from the Teechik Dancers, a Vuntut Gwitchin group from Old Crow, Yukon.
“By providing direct flights between Whitehorse and Toronto, we are in turn connecting Yukon businesses to the country’s biggest economic hub and creating a pathway for people around the world to visit our territory,” said Ranj Pillai, Minister of Tourism and Culture and Economic Development. “We are thrilled Air North, Yukon’s Airline is able to offer this new service and I look forward to welcoming more visitors to the Yukon and sharing the economic benefits that come with this additional air access.”
Joe Sparling, President and CEO, Air North, Yukon’s Airline, commented: “Air North, Yukon’s Airline owes our success to key indigenous and community partnerships, which have allowed us to navigate the many challenges we have encountered during the past 20 years. We are pleased to have added Toronto to our network, ensuring residents of the Yukon’s regional communities have seamless and affordable access to the rest of Canada and the world. This will broaden education, sports and cultural horizons for youth, and facilitate regional economic development. We are proud to make the North a better place to live and work.”