Calgary International Airport home to new WestJet Dreamliner hub
Published Wednesday, October 10, 2018 10:52AM MDT
Last Updated Wednesday, October 10, 2018 7:01PM MDT
WestJet has announced the first three destinations for its new Dreamliners and says the non-stop international flights will inject about $100 million into Calgary’s economy.
“We are proud to announce that the home of our initial Dreamliner service will be in our home,” said Ed Sims, WestJet President and CEO. “The home of the first, three 787 Dreamliners will be here in Calgary at Calgary International Airport.”
WestJet has ordered 10 Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners and says the first plane will arrive in Calgary in early 2019. Two more planes will be here by April and the rest will arrive sometime between 2020 and 2024.
The first three flights will be direct from Calgary to London, Paris and Dublin starting on April 28th, May 17th and June 1st, 2019, respectively.
“We chose Calgary for the 787 launch because when it comes to wide-bodied international service, this market is considerably under served and we look forward to connecting Calgarians and western Canada through Calgary, “said Sims.
‘I cannot say enough about how much we are proud of this company. Calgary’s a place where we dream, Calgary’s a place where nothing stops us, Calgary’s a place where we think big and we know that everything is possible, that the skies are limitless and no company better exemplifies that for this community than WestJet does,” said Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi.
Officials say the new, non-stop, international service between Calgary and the cities in the UK and Western Europe will support 650 jobs and $100 million in economic output.
It is expected that the three new flights will also boost tourism and officials say they will bring about 185,000 visitors to the city annually.
Rick Erickson is an independent airline analyst and he says the announcement is exciting and a big deal for Calgary.
“I call 650 jobs supported and $100 million, especially at this time in our economy, I call that a real good shot in the arm. And the major proportion of that impact, that $100 million, roughly two-thirds of that is coming for non-resident spending so these are tourists arriving, business people as well, arriving largely from Europe,’ he said.
The Dreamliners can carry 320 guests in a three-class cabin configuration; the business cabin has16 pods with seats that can lie-flat and there is also a first-class and economy cabin.
“It is an absolute game changer,” said Sims.
WestJet says it is the first Canadian airline to base its Dreamliners out of Calgary’s airport and that the investment will help to grow the international terminal and further establish YYC as a international aviation hub.
Fares to all three destinations are listed on WestJet’s website. Click HERE for more information.