Air Canada is Canada's national and largest airline providing services internationally as well as charter domestic flights. Air Canada gives passengers the freedom to fly your own way with services to more than 170 destinations around the world. Air Canada is one of the founding members of Star Alliance.
- IATA code: AC
- Number of serviced cities: 96 destinations (without code-shares)
- Main hub: Montréal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL) and Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ)
- Alliance: Star Alliance
- Fleet: 202 aircraft
- Loyalty rewards program: Aeroplan
History of Air Canada
Air Canada was first founded as Trans-Canada Airlines as a subsidiary of the Canadian National Railway by the federal government. This happened in April of 1936. The government envisioned an airline that would service the country and bring the Pacific and Atlantic coasts closer together. The first passenger flight took place on the first of September in 1937 from Vancouver to Seattle. It cost a mere $14.20 for a round-trip ticket. The first domestic flight was between Vancouver and Montréal in 1939. The airline headquarters moved from Winnipeg to Montréal in 1942. In 1953 Air Canada was the first airline in the world to have a computerized reservation system, something that revolutionized passenger air travel. The name was officially changed in 1965 from Trans-Canada Airlines to Air Canada. In the 1970s the airline was completely controlled by the government, including their destinations, travelled routes, and air fares. This changed in the 1980s when Air Canada finally privatized as did the Canadian National Railway.
In 1987 the airline made a fleet-wide decision to ban smoking on all of their flights; it was the first airline to do this. In the 1990s a new routes opened up to Osaka, Japan as well as an open sky agreement between Canada and the USA, allowing Air Canada to add 30 new routes to their network that crossed the border. In 2001 Air Canada merged with Canadian Airlines which led to confusion, flight delays and a lot of loss baggage due to disorganization and debt. In 2003 Air Canada filed for bankruptcy protection but regained profitability in 2004. Celine Dion helped boost the airlines profile on an international level by becoming the face of the airline as her song “You and I” was featured in a number of Air Canada television commercials.
Travel with Air Canada: practical information
- Meals: For flights 90 minutes or more within Canada and the USA, there is a café-style menu available for purchase. On international flights a complimentary meal is served along with a snack and refreshments. Special meals are available with 24 hours notice.
- Entertainment: In-flight entertainment includes a personal entertainment system with hundreds of movies, music stations, travel guides, television shows and more. There is also an in-flight magazine. For kids, a colouring package with a toy is provided.
- Cabin: 1 piece of carry-on luggage is permitted. It can weigh up to 10 kg and have the maximum dimensions of 23 x 40 x 55 cm. A personal item on top of this may be brought, including a blanket, coat, purse, etc.
- Checked: For travel within Canada 2 bags are permitted each weighing up to 23 kg. For travel between Canada and Europe 1 bag is permitted with a maximum weight of 23 kg. To check a 2nd bag it costs $50. For all other flights 2 bags are permitted, each weighing up to 23 kg.
- Excess: Overweight and oversized luggage is subject to a charge of $75 within Canada and $100 on flights outside of Canada.
Discounts and Special Offers
Infants can travel for free on flights within Canada if they travel on the lap of their accompanying parent. On international flights the fare is 10% of the adult fare. If infants take up their own seat, the child fare is applied. For other Air Canada offers, check liligo.com frequently.