Porter Airlines is modifying its return-to-service date in light of ongoing government travel restrictions. The new restart date is August 31, instead of the previously-announced target of July 29.
“Our ability to successfully relaunch service is directly tied to the lifting of travel restrictions,” said Michael Deluce, president and CEO, Porter Airlines. “We believe it is getting closer to a time when people can travel more freely and are optimistic that key border closures and mandatory quarantines will begin easing, so that we can recommence operations.”
Details on Porter’s new Healthy Flights program, designed to keep both passengers and team members safe, will be shared in the coming weeks.
To provide flexibility and give travellers peace of mind when purchasing for future travel, Porter is waiving change and cancellation fees on all fares booked between today and Aug. 31. This also applies to Porter Escapes vacation packages.
Porter temporarily suspended operations as of March 21, due to increasingly-restrictive government travel limitations associated with COVID-19.
Porter Airlines is deferring its resumption of flights until July 29, one month later than previously scheduled, due to ongoing COVID-19 travel restrictions.
“We want to see our planes in the sky as soon as possible and are actively working to prepare for our resumption of service. However, the ongoing uncertainty presented by government travel restrictions, including border closures, is impacting our ability to operate flights,” said Michael Deluce, president and CEO of Porter Airlines. “We are closely watching developments and know that Porter will be an important part of providing people with travel options as the economy recovers.”
Seasonal summer markets that Porter intended to serve in 2020 are being cancelled as part of this service deferral. Muskoka, Ont., and Stephenville, N.L., are the two destinations affected.
Porter is preparing to introduce enhanced health and safety measures for its return to service. Details of these initiatives will be announced closer to when flights restart, so that plans are as closely aligned with the latest public health recommendations as possible.
To provide flexibility and give travellers peace of mind when purchasing for future travel, Porter is waiving change and cancellation fees on all fares booked between today and July 29. This also applies to Porter Escapes vacation packages.
Porter Airlines is extending its temporary suspension of all flights due to COVID-19 by four weeks until June 29. The airline stopped flying on March 21, as travel restrictions and public health measures were increasing in North America.
“Our initial restart date of June 1, was something we believed was reasonable at the time,” said Michael Deluce, president and CEO, Porter Airlines. “While there are many promising signs about how COVID-19 is being contained, it is also clear that border restrictions, government-imposed stay-at-home orders and bans on non-essential travel will remain in place for many regions through much of May and into June. This makes it difficult for people to travel, so Porter will continue aligning its approach with the public health response.”
“We are eager to restart operations, so that team members can be recalled to work and we can help facilitate an economic recovery,” said Deluce. “This will be done in a responsible manner, taking into account health and safety precautions.”
Additional measures will be introduced prior to restarting flights in compliance with evolving regulations and Porter’s own standards to ensure that our team and passengers are protected.
Porter Airlines is temporarily suspending all flights at the close of operations on Friday, March 20, with plans to resume service on June 1. This decision is being made in support of ongoing public health efforts to contain COVID-19.
Michael Deluce, Porter’s president and CEO stated: “COVID-19 is having an unprecedented effect on people around the world and Porter is determined to do our part to support the efforts of the Canadian, U.S. and global authorities in their responses. Restricting activities by people in all communities is what’s required to keep our team members and passengers healthy, and ultimately to end this fast-spreading pandemic. A temporary suspension of all flights allows the public health crisis to diminish and then time to restart our operations.
“Remaining flights through March 20, will allow customers to complete existing trips and return home, or make last-minute reservations to reach a destination.”
The existing waiver of change and cancellation fees means there is no cost to customers for modifying an existing itinerary.
Porter is also prepared to help recovery efforts by operating flights to support the movement of government officials, public health requirements and economic recovery efforts. Porter FBO at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport will remain open to support these needs, as well as Ontario’s provincial medevac service and other general aviation.
Reservations are currently being taken for Porter flights starting June 1. All flights booked in June will be fully changeable and refundable to give passengers maximum flexibility as travel resumes.
Just in time for spring break, Porter Airlines is resuming seasonal service to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina , beginning March 4, 2020 . Flights operate twice weekly until May 17, 2020 , on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Porter offers the only non-stop flights from Canada .
Porter Airlines celebrated its first flight to Ontario’s ‘cottage country’ on June 27 with its inaugural flight to Muskoka, one of the world’s iconic summer retreats. Passengers enjoyed nonstop service from Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport to Muskoka Airport, and were met by local officials and residents on arrival.
With the introduction of Porter’s seasonal Muskoka flights, people looking to relax in a tranquil wilderness setting, can do so with a flight time of approximately 20 minutes. Operating twice weekly on Thursdays and Mondays, service continues until September 3.
Situated among pristine waters, and surrounded by scenic shorelines and vast forests, Muskoka is one of Ontario’s most sought-after vacation spots. In addition to stunning vistas, visitors can enjoy the region’s heritage communities and vibrant towns, offering excellent shopping, one-of-a-kind entertainment, events and an abundance of recreational activities. Muskoka’s charm and beauty offers a unique experience for families, groups, and couples looking to create long-lasting memories.
Explorers’ Edge, the regional tourism organization, also launched its seasonal shuttle bus service, providing Porter passengers transportation from Muskoka Airport to accommodations across the region. The organization is also offering a traveller incentive of $100 in spending vouchers for those booking a flight and accommodation.
Porter Airlines will be flying to Muskoka Airport with the introduction of 2019 summer service. Popular with outdoor enthusiasts, Muskoka (below) has established itself among the world’s iconic summer retreats.
Flights will have an air time of approximately 20 minutes, operating twice weekly on Thursdays and Mondays between Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport and Muskoka Airport, from June 27 to September 3. Connecting flights are available via Toronto for numerous Porter destinations in the U.S. and Canada.
Schedule details are as follows:
Day of week
Toronto departure time
Muskoka departure time
*Tuesday departure during long weekends.
Top Copyright Photo: Porter Airlines Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) C-GKQF (msn 4391) (Pan American Games – Toronto 2015) YUL (Gilbert Hechema). Image: 926534.
Porter Airlines is opening an aircraft maintenance base at Thunder Bay International Airport, as of February 2019. This development contributes to Porter servicing its fleet of 29 Bombardier Q400 aircraft and will create 18 jobs in the city.
“Thunder Bay is an important location in Porter’s network,” said Robert Deluce, president and CEO of Porter Airlines. “This latest investment in a maintenance base demonstrates our ongoing commitment to the community.”
Porter has recently made significant investments in Northern Ontario, including opening a base for pilots and flight attendants in Thunder Bay one year ago.
The maintenance base will be located in an existing hangar at the airport. Porter engineers will perform daily overnight maintenance on two aircraft that will return to service the following day.
Porter currently operates up to seven daily roundtrip flights between the city and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.
Porter Airlines is reintroducing its annual winter service between Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport and Mont Tremblant, Quebec. Flights operate from December 7, 2018, to April 1, 2019.
The early December start date allows visitors to attend the popular 24 Hours of Tremblant season kickoff charitable event and enjoy pre-Christmas time in the village.
The standard schedule includes four weekly flights throughout the season, with adjustments for increased frequencies during peak periods, such as Christmas, Family Day and March Break.
Mont Tremblant is a premiere winter locale that Porter has served for more than a decade. Its charm and energy is found on and off the slopes, making for a diverse destination that suits adventure seekers, romantics and foodies.
Nonstop flights from Billy Bishop Airport take approximately 70 minutes. Connecting flights are available from numerous Porter locations in Canada and the U.S.
Porter Airlines and Aimia Inc. are announcing a comprehensive partnership designating Porter as a preferred Canadian airline to issue Aeroplan Miles on Porter routes effective July 2020.
Porter will also become a redemption partner, as of the effective time of the agreement, offering up to 60% of seat inventory for the purchase of flights with Aeroplan Miles at fixed-rate prices. The arrangement includes an extensive cooperative marketing program targeting existing Aeroplan members, with an emphasis on members who travel on Porter routes.
Points from Porter’s existing VIPorter loyalty program will be converted into Aeroplan Miles when the agreement becomes effective in 2020. Porter passengers will then be able to earn and redeem Aeroplan Miles on all Porter flights, plus across the growing Aeroplan collection of more than 75 travel and retail partners. This includes international airlines covering much of the globe.
The VIPorter loyalty status program will be maintained beyond June 2020 to deliver benefits for frequent flyers, such as priority boarding, complimentary seat selection and checked baggage allowances. Other details will be communicated to members before that time.
Top Copyright Photo (all others by Porter): Porter Airlines Bombardier DHC-8-402 (Q400) C-GLQB (msn 4130) (Ottawa 2017) IAD (Brian McDonough). Image: 938919.