Sunday,  October 24, 2021  3:46 pm

Porter resuming service to Canadian cities on Sept. 8; U.S. flights start Sept. 17

  • Air
  •   07-05-2021  9:36 am
  •   Pax Global Media
Porter resuming service to Canadian cities on Sept. 8; U.S. flights start Sept. 17
Pax Global Media

Porter Airlines is officially returning to the skies on Sept. 8, nearly 18 months after suspending flights due to COVID-19 public health and travel restrictions.

"It's been nearly 18 months since we suspended flights due to COVID-19 public health and travel restrictions - and we've missed you," reads a statement on the airline's website posted Monday morning (July 5). 

The flight schedule features Canadian destinations Halifax, Moncton, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City, St. John’s, NL, Thunder Bay and Toronto. 

Flights to U.S. destinations (Boston, Chicago, New York and Washington) follow on Sept. 17. 

"This is the moment our team members, passengers and the communities we serve have been waiting for," said Michael Deluce, president and CEO, Porter Airlines, in a statement. "The pandemic has progressed to the point that we can now begin restoring service across our network, focused around our main base at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. Being grounded for more than a year has been incredibly difficult for everyone involved."

"In true Porter fashion, our team members have displayed remarkable levels of commitment, engagement and optimism over this uncertain period of time, despite the vast majority being unable to work. While deciding to suspend our service was the most difficult business decision we've made, announcing a restart of flights is the first step in a recovery process that includes recalling hundreds of team members and welcoming back passengers. We are looking forward to once again delivering Porter's unique style of service."

Approximately 500 team members will be recalled to active status as the first phase of flights are introduced, the airline said. 

More staff will be added in subsequent months as flights and destinations return to the schedule.

The flight schedule

The initial flight schedule is as follows:

Canadian Routes* date
Peak daily roundtrips
Service start
Ottawa - Toronto
6 flights
Sept. 8
Montréal - Toronto
6 flights
Sept. 8
Thunder Bay - Toronto
3 flights
Sept. 8
Ottawa - Halifax
2 flights
Sept. 13
Montréal - Halifax
1 flight
Sept. 13
Québec City - Toronto
1 flight
Sept. 13
Halifax - St. John’s
1 flight
Sept. 17
Moncton - Ottawa
1 flight
Sept. 17
Sault Ste. Marie - Toronto
2 flights
Oct. 6
Sudbury - Toronto
2 flights
Oct. 6
Windsor - Toronto
2 flights
Oct. 6
Toronto - Timmins
1 flight
Oct. 6
Fredericton - Ottawa
1 flight
Oct. 6
Saint John NB - Ottawa
1 flight
Oct. 6

* All Toronto routes operate at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. Schedules vary by day of week.

 

U.S. Routes* date
Peak daily roundtrips
Service start
New York (Newark) - Toronto
6 flights
Sept. 17
Boston - Toronto
3 flights
Sept. 17
Chicago (Midway) - Toronto
2 flights
Sept. 17
Washington (Dulles) - Toronto
1 flight
Sept. 17

* All Toronto routes operate at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. Schedules vary by day of week.

Flights to other year-round destinations normally operated by Porter are currently available for booking and set to resume as of Oct. 6. 

Service is returning based on anticipated passenger demand, with frequency and markets increasing over time, the airline said. 

For peace of mind when buying a ticket, Porter is making all fares purchased by July 20, for travel through December 15, 2021, fully refundable, with no fees. This also applies to Porter Escapes vacation packages.

View Porter's Healthy Flights program for more information on the airline's health and safety protocols.  

"Our safety team developed Healthy Flights as more than a checklist of rules and procedures," said Deluce. "They carefully considered how to provide a safe experience for our passengers and team members, while being true to our distinct brand and approach to service."

Porter gets up to $270.5M in federal loans

The news comes after Porter Aviation Holdings Inc., the parent company of Porter Airlines, announced that it had reached an agreement with the Government of Canada for loans valued at up to $270.5 million dollars.

Included in this amount is $20.5 million dollars dedicated to issuing additional passenger refunds for flights cancelled during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The loans are being made available through the federal government’s Canada Enterprise Emergency Funding Corporation under the Large Employer Emergency Financing Facility (LEEFF). Terms are consistent with LEEFF’s published rates and repayable within five years.

A separate loan to assist with passenger refunds is repayable over seven years.

All flights booked by June 30, 2021, for travel as of February 1, 2020, are eligible for refunds. The process for making refund requests begins immediately.

All submissions must be made online and will be accepted until August 29, 2021.

Travel agency commissions are protected for tickets issued as part of this refund process, Porter said.

Complete details about the refund process are available here.


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