Aviation
Monthly Aircraft Movements: Major airports – NAV CANADA Towers and Flight Service Stations, July 2017

Release date: September 28, 2017

Analysis

There were 596,387 aircraft take‑offs and landings at the 91 Canadian airports with NAV CANADA air traffic control towers and flight service stations compared with 548,845 movements in July 2016.

Growth in both itinerant movements (flights from one airport to another) and local movements (flights that remain in the vicinity of the airport) contributed to the year‑over‑year gain in July 2017. Itinerant movements rose 8.3% to 427,137 while local movements increased 9.6% to 169,250.

Overall, air traffic was up 8.7% in July 2017 as 60 airports reported more movements from the same month the previous year. Year‑over‑year variations of more than 1,500 movements were reported at 21 airports. Of these, 17 airports registered growth ranging from 4,221 movements at Oshawa, Ontario to 1,510 at both St‑Jean, Quebec and Toronto/Billy Bishop Toronto City, Ontario. Reductions in aircraft movements at the remaining 4 airports were recorded at Toronto/Buttonville Municipal, Ontario (-3,361 movements), Victoria International, British Columbia (-2,596), Kitchener/Waterloo, Ontario (-1,870) and Pitt Meadows, British Columbia (-1,701).

Itinerant traffic rose 8.3% (+32,744 movements) as 67 airports reported more movements in July 2017. With the exception of an increase of 2,039 movements at Oshawa, the largest gains were observed in British Columbia with increases at Williams Lake (+3,173 movements), Kamloops (+2,283) and Abbotsford (+1,833). In early July, a series of widfires began across British Columbia. In response, the province declared a state of emergency, issued evacuation orders and deployed aircraft to several regions to assist in the fire suppression activities. The largest reductions in movements were recorded at Toronto/Buttonville Municipal (-1,503) and Fort McMurray, Alberta (-478).

In July 2017, 50 airports recorded higher levels of local activity from the same month a year earlier. As a result, local movements rose by 14,798 movements. Year‑over‑year variations ranged from an increase of 2,620 movements at Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario to a decrease of 2,124 movements at Victoria International.

Itinerant movements: domestic, transborder and international

Domestic itinerant movements (within Canada) rose to 366,718 in July 2017, up 9.3% from the same month the previous year. The airports leading the gains in air traffic were Williams Lake (+3,176 movements), Kamloops (+2,293), Oshawa, (+2,044) and Abbotsford (+1,817). The largest reductions in movements occurred at Toronto/Buttonville Municipal (-1,513), Fort McMurray (-478) and Victoria International (-444).

During the month, 87 airports reported 44,601 transborder (between Canada and the United States) itinerant movements, up 1.4% from the level reported in July 2016. The largest increases in traffic were recorded at Vancouver International, British Columbia (+449 movements), Montréal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau International, Quebec (+269) and Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International, Ontario (+111). The largest decreases were observed at Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International, Nova Scotia (-209), Kitchener/Waterloo (-102) and Regina International, Saskatchewan (-83).

In July 2017, 33 airports reported a total of 15,818 other international itinerant movements, up 6.0% from the same period the previous year. Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International was the busiest airport with 7,214 movements, an increase of 1.8%, followed by Montréal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau International (3,705 movements) and Vancouver International (2,802). Together, these three airports accounted for 87% of all other international itinerant movements during the month.

Factors which may have influenced the data

The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre Inc. reported 3,154 fires covering 1,130,724 hectares as of July 31st, 2017. This represents an increase of 1,514 fires and 960,048 hectares from a month earlier. In 2016, the agency had recorded 3,969 fires encompassing 1,293,072 hectares by the end of July.

In early July 2017, numerous wild fires broke out in British Columbia. The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre Inc. reported 821 fires covering 426,022 hectares as of July 31st. In response, the province declared a state of emergency, issued evacuation orders and deployed aircraft to several regions to assist in the fire suppression activities.

In July, Conair Group, based at Abbotsford Airport, British Columbia, provided 26 aircraft to battle fires burning in British Columbia in such places as Cache Creek, 100 Mile House, Williams Lake and Princeton.

On July 18th, 2017, De Beers Canada inaugurated a direct flight from Calgary International Airport, Alberta to Gahcho Kué Mine in the Northwest Territories. The employee charter flight will take place twice per week on a year‑round basis.

On July 13th, 2017, Elite Airways began twice weekly non‑stop service from Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport, Nova Scotia to Portland, Maine with an option for passengers to continue to Sarasota‑Bradenton, Florida.

On July 10th and July 18th, 2017, smoke from numerous wildfires burning in British Columbia’s interior caused delays and a handful of cancellations at Kamloops Airport, British Columbia.

On July 9th, 2017, Central Mountain Air commenced service between Edmonton International Airport, Alberta and Prince George, British Columbia. Flights will operate six days a week.

Starting June 24th, 2017, WestJet reduced the number of flights between Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International, Manitoba and London’s Gatwick Airport, Great Britain. The number of flights were cut down to 10, from 22 flights in 2016. The reduction in flights will be effective until August 26th, 2017.

On June 23rd, 2017, Air Canada commenced service between Vancouver International Airport, British Columbia and Boston Logan International Airport, Massachusetts. The non‑stop seasonal flight will operate daily until September 4th, 2017.

On June 9th, 2017, Air Canada Rouge launched its new route from Montréal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau International, Quebec to Marseille, France. The seasonal non‑stop service will operate three times a week for the summer.

On June 8th, 2017, Air Canada Rouge began seasonal service from Vancouver International Airport to London’s Gatwick Airport. The flights will operate three times a week.

On June 5th, 2017, Pacific Coastal Airlines added a new flight in British Columbia between Kelowna and Victoria International Airport.

On June 1st, 2017, Vancouver International Airport celebrated the inauguration of two new non‑stop seasonal services; Air Canada’s daily service to Frankfurt, Germany and Air Canada Rouge’s three times a week service to Nagoya, Japan.

On May 29th, 2017, WestJet began non-stop seasonal service four times per week between Kelowna and Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International. The service will continue until September 2017.

Starting May 24th, 2017, Sunwing changed several of its flights from Québec/Jean Lesage International, Quebec to destinations in Cuba and Mexico from non‑stop to direct via Montreal/Pierre Elliot Trudeau International or Ottawa/Macdonald‑Cartier International, Ontario.

Starting May 21st, 2017, First Air added a new trans‑territorial flight spanning Nunavut and the Northwest Territories. The airline added a fourth weekly flight on its Iqaluit‑Rankin Inlet‑Yellowknife route.

In May 2017, several changes were initiated as a result of the termination of the code share partnership between Canadian North and First Air. Canadian North resumed a number of routes in the Qikiqtaaluk Region in Nunavut. Effective May 18th, the airline began service, three times a week, between Iqaluit, Pangnirtung and Qikiqtarjuaq. Effective May 17th, it began service, six times a week, between Igloolik and Pond Inlet. The same day, service also began, three times a week, between Iqaluit and Pangnirtung. This last route was originally planned to be between Iqaluit, Pangnirtung and Clyde River but was dropped by the airline. First Air made adjustments to its schedules in Nunavut starting May 17th. The airlines’ service between Iqaluit and Cape Dorset increased from five to six weekly flights. Service between Iqaluit, Clyde River, Pond Inlet and Resolute Bay would operate once weekly. Overall service between Iqaluit and Pond Inlet and Resolute Bay rose to six weekly flights. Service between Iqaluit and Igloolik grew from five to six weekly flights. Service in the Northwest Territories between Yellowknife and Inuvik resumed with one daily flight. Further, as part of its agreement with Summit Air, flights between Edmonton International and Yellowknife increased from 10 to 12 weekly flights.

From May 18th to June 29th, 2017, WestJet launched overnight service four times per week from Kelowna to Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International, Ontario. Daily service will begin from June 30th to September 5th, 2017. Service will be reduced to three times per week between September 6th to October 8th, 2017.

On May 17th, 2017, First Air ended its service between Yellowknife and Norman Wells, Northwest Territories.

On May 12th, 2017, the runway extension at Red Deer Regional Airport, Alberta became fully operational.

On May 5th, 2017, nearly 150 flights scheduled to arrive and depart from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport were cancelled due to thunderstorms and poor visibility.

On May 4th, 2017, WestJet started direct service between Calgary International and Nashville, Tennessee. The airline will operate two flights a week.

On May 1st, 2017, Wasaya Airways launched a new non‑stop service between Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International and Sioux Lookout, Ontario. This route operates on weekdays only.

On May 1st, 2017, Air Canada commenced daily year round service between Montréal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau International and Washington Dulles International Airport, D.C.

On May 1st, 2017, Air Transat changed its flight from Québec/Jean Lesage International to Paris, France from non‑stop to direct via Montreal/Pierre Elliot Trudeau International.

On April 30th, 2017, WestJet commenced service between Hamilton Airport, Ontario and Vancouver International Airport. The flight will operate four times a week moving to a daily flight, June 28th to September 7th. The flight will then return to four times a week until October 27th.

On April 30th, 2017, WestJet launched a daily direct flight between Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International to Abbotsford.

On April 30th, 2017, WestJet resumed daily non‑stop flights between Gander International Airport, Newfoundland and Labrador and Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport.

Effective April 22nd until May 28th, 2017, Air Canada Rouge offered daytime non‑stop service on Saturday and Sunday from Kelowna to Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International. Daily service will begin from May 29th to mid‑September.

In April 2017, Cathay Pacific added three additional flights between Vancouver International Airport and Hong Kong, China. The airline operates the new Airbus 350‑900.

In April 2017, Calm Air cancelled flights to Gillam, Manitoba due to the soft runway conditions. The gravel runway was unsafe to land large planes.

Effective March 28th, 2017, Cathay Pacific increased the frequency of its service from Vancouver International Airport to Boston.

As of March 26th, 2017, Air Canada stopped flying directly from Ottawa/Macdonald‑Cartier International to LaGuardia Airport, New York, New York. The airline instead will offer flights from Ottawa/Macdonald‑Cartier International to Newark Airport, New Jersey.

On March 17th, 2017, two Cessnas operated by Cargair Aviation collided in mid‑air over St‑Bruno, Quebec. Several of the Cargair flight school campuses suspended activities for a few days immediately following the accident.

On March 15th, 2017, Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport reported more than two dozen flight cancellations and delays due to a winter storm which caused power outages throughout the province.

On March 14th, 2017, a powerful winter storm pounded southern and central Quebec. Most flights at Montréal/Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport were cancelled or delayed.

On March 7th, 2017, Regina International Airport, Saskatchewan cancelled and delayed numerous flights due to blizzard conditions.

On February 16th, 2017, Air Canada launched daily year‑round flights from Montréal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau International to Shanghai, China.

Starting February 5th, 2017, Air Canada began daily year‑round non‑stop flights between Dallas‑Fort Worth Airport, Texas and Vancouver International.

On February 3rd, 2017, WestJet inaugurated daily service from Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International to Sudbury, Ontario.

On January 23rd, 2017, First Air announced a new four‑year agreement with Summit Air, which will expand its use of the charter passenger service.

On January 19th, 2017, WestJet inaugurated service from Calgary International Airport to Phoenix‑Mesa Gateway Airport, Arizona. Inaugural service from Edmonton International Airport began January 21st.

On January 17th, 2017, WestJet launched its non‑stop service from Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International Airport to Hamilton Airport. The airline also relaunched non‑stop service to Edmonton International and Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport from Hamilton Airport on January 16th.

Effective January 15th, 2017, NewLeaf, operated by Flair Airlines, cancelled flights between Hamilton and Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International airports. Also flights were cancelled between Abbotsford and Edmonton International and between Edmonton International and Kelowna.

Starting January 10th, 2017, Aqsaqniq Airways offered bi‑monthly service from Cambridge Bay, Nunavut to Yellowknife. The company plans to put passengers and freight on a de Havilland Dash‑7 combi between the two hubs every second Tuesday.

Starting January 9th, 2017, Delta Air Lines resumed daily year‑round service between John F. Kennedy Airport, New York and Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport.

On January 8th, 2017, American Airlines ended its service from Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Due to planned maintenance by Canadian North, the Ottawa to Iqaluit codeshare route will be served by a single daily flight operated by First Air from January 5th to February 28th, 2017.

On January 2nd, 2017, Canadian North launched a refurbished Boeing 737‑300 combi‑jet on its Iqaluit–Ottawa route. The company also announced that it will resume Dash 8 service for the following Nunavut airports: Pond Inlet, Clyde River, Qikiqtarjuaq and Pangnirtung.

In 2016, Air Canada reduced the number of flights between Kamloops and Vancouver International.

On December 26th, 2016, several flights out of Thunder Bay Airport, Ontario were cancelled due to a winter storm.

On December 20th, 2016, Air Canada began a new year‑round service between Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International Airport and Port of Spain, Trinidad.

On December 17th, 2016, Air Canada inaugurated a new non‑stop service between Montréal/Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport and Puerto Rico. The weekly flights will operate as a winter seasonal service.

Starting December 16th, 2016, Sunwing began new seasonal flights to Freeport, Bahamas from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan and Regina. Regina also received a new seasonal flight to Manzanillo, Mexico starting December 21st, 2016.

On December 15th, 2016, Sunwing started seasonal flights to Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic from Saskatoon.

On December 14th, 2016, Cargair began to operate a training facility at Montréal/Mirabel International Airport, Quebec. The flight school was previously located at Mascouche, Quebec.

On December 9th, 2016, Porter Airlines began winter service between Toronto/Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport, Ontario and Mont Tremblant, Quebec. Flights will be available until April 3rd, 2017, with service up to six times weekly during the peak schedule.

In December 2016, Canadian North cancelled its code‑sharing flights from Ottawa/Macdonald‑Cartier International Airport to Iqaluit. This route was serviced by First Air.

In November 2016, the city of Mascouche closed the private airport that had been operating in the city.

On November 18th, 2016, Air Canada Rouge launched weekly service between Montréal/Pierre Elliott Trudeau International to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. The route will be flown three times a week by mid‑December 2016.

On November 18th, 2016, Hawkair Aviation Services filed for bankruptcy, suspending all operations.

Starting November 7th, 2016, Perimeter Aviation added flights in Ontario from Sioux Lookout to Bearskin Lake First Nation and Thunder Bay to Bearskin Lake First Nation.

On November 6th, 2016, Sunwing Vacations introduced a new weekly service from Kelowna to Cancun, Mexico. This service will run until April 9th, 2017.

On October 31st, 2016, Toronto Airways Inc. and the Canadian Flight Academy announced their move of operations from Toronto/Buttonville Municipal Airport, Ontario to Oshawa Airport, Ontario. In order to accommodate the move, Toronto Airways at Toronto/Buttonville Municipal was closed effective November 23rd, 2016. The Canadian Flight Academy was closed effective November 30th, 2016.

On October 29th, 2016, the St. John’s Airport Authority seized one of the aircraft of National Airlines passenger operations due to a financial issue. The airline subsequently announced that they were cancelling several flights in November and December and decided not to extend service to St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador beyond January 6th, 2017.

On October 29th, 2016, WestJet launched its first flight from Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International Airport to Belize City, Belize. The new non‑stop seasonal service will operate two times a week.

On October 24th, 2016, Perimeter Aviation service to Sioux Lookout was expanded to include the Ontario First Nation communities of Deer Lake, Sachigo Lake, Weagamow (Round Lake) and North Spirit Lake with many of these new flights connecting to Bearskin Airlines service to and from Thunder Bay.

On October 20th, 2016, Air Canada inaugurated the only non‑stop service from Vancouver International Airport to Delhi, India. The airline will operate flights three times a week.

The Canadian North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) Region began its annual field training exercise in Inuvik and the surrounding areas on October 17th, 2016. The live‑fly field training exercise will run to October 21st, 2016.

As of October 7th, 2016, Porter Airlines began daily flights between Toronto/Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport to North Bay, Ontario.

Effective October 6th, 2016, Calgary International Airport was renamed to YYC Calgary International Airport.

As of October 5th, 2016, American Airlines ended its service between Kitchener/Waterloo Airport, Ontario and Chicago O’Hare International Airport, Illinois.

As of October 1st, 2016, Hawkair suspended flights from Terrace, British Columbia to Vancouver International Airport.

Starting in October 2016, United Airlines increased flights from Edmonton to Denver, Colorado to two per day.

Effective September 19th, 2016, Bearskin Airlines increased service between the Ontario cities of Thunder Bay, Sault Ste. Marie and Sudbury. All nonstop service between Thunder Bay‑Sault Ste. Marie and Sault Ste. Marie‑Sudbury will increase from 23 to 33 flights weekly. Service between Thunder Bay and Sudbury will increase from 29 to 40 flights weekly including a combination of nonstop and one stop same aircraft service.

On September 18th, 2016, the City of Brandon, Manitoba announced that WestJet was ending direct flights between Brandon and Toronto/Lester B. Pearson International Airport. The service was introduced earlier this year as a trial run.

On September 15th, 2016, Greater Toronto Airways began daily flights from Toronto/Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport to Niagara District Airport in Niagara‑on‑the‑Lake, Ontario.

On September 12th, 2016, Watson Lake Airport, Yukon, welcomed the arrival of its first scheduled commercial flight since the 1990’s. The Alkan Air flight originated from Whitehorse, Yukon.

On September 5th, 2016, Integra Air launched a new scheduled air service in Alberta between Edmonton International and Medicine Hat.

Operation NANOOK 2016, Canada’s annual northern sovereignty operation began on August 21st, 2016. The Canadian Armed Forces deployed land, maritime and air components in three locations in the North: Rankin Inlet, Nunavut, Whitehorse and Haines Junction, Yukon.

Effective August 18th, 2016, Moncton/Greater Moncton International Airport, New Brunswick was renamed Greater Moncton Roméo Leblanc International Airport.

On August 6th and 7th, 2016, Edmonton/Villeneuve Airport, Alberta boosted their regional profile by hosting their second annual Edmonton Airshow.

As of August 1st, 2016, Delta Airlines suspended flights to and from Regina International Airport and Minneapolis, Minnesota.

In August 2016, West Wind Aviation completed its acquisition of Transwest Air. The carriers will operate as separate airlines with a codeshare agreement on their northern Canada schedule.

For the month of August 2016, Central Mountain Air continued to offer flights in British Columbia between Dawson Creek and Prince George after a trial run the previous month.

The Canadian Interagency Forest Fire Centre Inc. reported 3,969 fires covering 1,293,072 hectares as of July 31st, 2016. This represents an increase of 944 fires and 412,915 hectares from a month earlier. In 2015, the agency had recorded 5,766 fires encompassing 3,889,663 hectares by the end of July.

Starting July 28th and 29th, 2016, WestJet commenced a seasonal non‑stop service connecting, Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International Airport and Kelowna Airport, John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport and Edmonton International.

On July 27th, 2016, Montair Aviation, a flight training academy based in Pitt Meadows, British Columbia, opened their second training base at Red Deer Regional Airport.

On July 25th, 2016, NewLeaf, a new Canadian low‑cost air travel company, inaugurated its first flight from John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport to Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International. The company is contracting flights through Kelowna‑based Flair Air.

On July 20th, 2016, Qatar Airways Cargo launched new freighter services between New York (John F. Kennedy) and Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International.

On July 14th, 2016, First Air suspended its three‑times‑a‑week service from Iqaluit to Coral Harbour, Nunavut.

On July 13th, 2016, First Air added an additional non‑stop flight between Iqaluit and Cape Dorset.

On July 13th, 2016, Cargair Max Aviation acquired the Air Médic operational base (land and an aircraft hangar) in St. Honoré, Quebec. Air Médic will continue to have access to the hanger. As part of the investment into its new flight school location, Cargair indicated it would be adding 12 aircraft and two flight simulators.

On July 1st, 2016, Calm Air ended its midday flights connecting Flin‑Flon, Manitoba, Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International and Thompson, Manitoba.

Effective July 1st, 2016, United Airlines suspended service from Edmonton International Airport to Chicago and to San Francisco, California.

On July 1st, 2016, WestJet launched a new seasonal service between Winnipeg/James Armstrong Richardson International Airport and Halifax/Robert L. Stanfield International Airport. The airline will operate flights four times a week until September 2016.

For the month of July 2016, Central Mountain Air will be offering flights between Dawson Creek and Prince George on a weekly basis.

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