Phoenix-based globe-trotters will soon have another direct international flight destination, with Air Canada offering six flights per week to Montreal, Quebec beginning in November.
The airline recently offered flights to the cobblestone-clad Canadian locale as the airline tested out trips between February and May of 2018, offering passengers three different flights per week in that time frame. The route, which is flown by an Air Canada Rouge Airbus A319, seats 136 passengers. After a successful test run, it offered service again from September of 2018 to May of this year. It’ll take the summer off before returning for the 2019/2020 season in November, offering six flights per week, doubling its initial test run.
Demand for a direct Montreal flight has been evident and growing year-over-year as passengers are looking for less hitch in their travel plans to Canada. Air Canada has increased capacity on route by 25 percent between winter 2018/2019 and winter 2019/2020.
But the expanded flight option isn’t just good news for Arizonans looking to head up to the great white north; it’s also beneficial for our state’s tourism economy as Montreal-based travelers have the option to come down to the desert for a sunny salutation.
“The Canadian tourism industry has not considered Phoenix a big market to travel to before,” Glenn Williamson, CEO & Founder Canada Arizona Business Council said. “They’ll go to other cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles and Houston, but we’re finally making the cut. We think we can see more long haul direct flights now with this option.”
This news is a growing trend for Arizona and the Phoenix area as Sky Harbor has seen more nonstop international flight options land in the last couple of years. American Airlines recently launched a daily nonstop flight to London and Condor Airlines began offering seasonal service to Frankfurt. With international flights bringing in more than $3 billion each year to the state, adding another international service is only good news.
“There’s culturally a real link that could go on here,” Williamson said. “We’ve never had travel packages of any size and caliber with Canada. We think this route, given the push behind it, may be the tip of the tipping point and we can start seeing numbers grow. Our goal is to go from 1 million to 1.5 million Canadians coming down here.”