BREAKING: WestJet to Launch New Ultra-Low-Cost Airline in 2017

by Daniel Nikulin

Is Canada ready for a new no-frills carrier? Calgary-based WestJet Airlines seems to thinks so as they’ve announced plans today to introduce a new discount airline to the Canadian skies by the end of the year.

Using a start-up fleet of 10 Boeing 737-800s, the still un-named airline will operate as a high-density, ultra-low fare option to rival Air Canada’s rouge, Winnipeg’s start-up NewLeaf Airlines and charters, Air Transat and Sunwing.

No details have yet been offered by WestJet, in terms of a hub or possible routes for the new ultra-low-cost airline, and its launch is still subject to an agreement with pilots as well as any required regulatory approvals it will need to secure.

“The complete unbundling of services and products in order to lower fares for the price-sensitive traveller has created the ULCC (ultra-low-cost carrier) category, and our new airline will provide Canadians a pro-competitive, cheap and cheerful flying experience from a company with a proven track record.” – Gregg Saretsky, WestJet President and CEO

WestJet, along with their regional subsidiary, WestJet Encore, currently offers scheduled airline service to over 100 destinations across North America, Mexico and the Caribbean, and most recently, select European cities.

Beginning as a three aircraft discount carrier themselves in 1996, the company knows a thing or two about starting small. In 2013, they launched WestJet Encore to handle their regional routes, the same year Air Canada’s rouge began their service to the Caribbean and on certain trans-Atlantic routes. It’s time they nail it again.


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