Official celebrations for Air Canada's new, non-stop flight between Montreal-Trudeau International Airport (YUL) and Kelowna International Airport (YLW), which arrived to Kelowna for the first time in late June, took place at YLW on July 5.
"We are excited to launch the only non-stop service between Montreal and Kelowna, connecting two leading tourism destinations popular with Quebecers and British Columbians alike," said Senior Vice President, Network Planning and Revenue Management at Air Canada, Mark Galardo. "We know people are excited to travel again, and we look forward to welcoming our customers onboard."
The timing of the new flight coincided well with the kick-off of Step 3 in BC's Restart Plan, which occurred July 1 and sees Canada-wide recreational travel once again resume, with fully-vaccinated Canadians, in particular, being encouraged to come and explore our province.
“Our local tourism economy, which prior to the pandemic was a $2.1 billion industry, relies on strong air service connections,” said Tourism Kelowna President & CEO, Lisanne Ballantyne. “This new Air Canada flight between YUL and YLW is a welcome addition, particularly as BC moves to the next step in its restart plan and we stand ready to welcome visitors back to our region."
The flights on the new, environmentally-friendly Airbus A220-300—which includes complimentary entertainment at every seat, onboard WiFi, and more—will operate three times weekly, increasing to four times in mid-July, five times in August, and then extending beyond the summer to year round service. Flight schedules and booking can be accessed on Air Canada's website.
"Air Canada's non-stop Montreal-Kelowna service marks a vast milestone for YLW to bring travel between Quebec and the Okanagan region," said YLW Airport Director, Sam Samaddar. "Montreal has been a significant region for tourism in the Okanagan and we have worked numerous years to achieve this community connection. I look forward to welcoming residents of Quebec and those who connect through Montreal to our four-season paradise."
Read more about the launch in the official press release.
In addition to Air Canada, service to YLW for domestic travel from various destinations is also provided by WestJet, Swoop, Flair, Pacific Coastal, and other smaller, regional airlines.
Travellers can rest assured that safety is a top priority at YLW, where a variety of measures have been introduced for arrivals and departures from the airport, including increased sanitization of high-touch areas, a requirement to wear a mask or face coverings when inside the terminal, and more.
Individuals arriving at YLW can access information about Kelowna and area at our YLW Information Kiosk—while volunteers are onsite a few days a week, we now also have a Google Nest doorbell that links people directly to our team at the Kelowna Visitor Centre, who are available seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. PDT. There is also a touchscreen that allows arriving travellers to explore our website and online retail store before they leave YLW, as well as a selection of brochures and copies of our Official Visitors' Guide that they can take with them as they set out to explore Kelowna.
For more information about the measures Canadian airlines are taking to keep travellers safe, visit the following links:
- Air Canada COVID-19 Information Hub
- WestJet Safety Above All and COVID-19
- Swoop COVID-19 Information Center
- Flair Airlines FlySafe
- Pacific Coastal COVID-19 Updates & Information