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United and Air Canada to offer more than 260 transborder flights daily this summer

United and Air Canada have announced that they have enhanced their transborder joint business agreement. With this, both the airlines will together offer more than 260 daily flights between the United States and Canada this summer, including two new routes.

The carriers will offer “industry leading capacity” between the two neighbouring countries. The airlines have collaboratively optimized their schedules, subject to applicable government and regulatory conditions, and added more flights to provide travellers greater connectivity and more flexible flight times, with over 80 transborder codeshare routes and more than 260 daily flights.

Two new Washington routes from Canada

Starting 1st June 2023, Air Canada will operate 5-flights-a-week between Vancouver and Washington-Dulles with Boeing B737MAX-8s. And as of 2nd June 2023, United will operate a daily flight between Washington-Dulles and Calgary with Airbus A319s. The flights will operate with the following schedule:

Air Canada and United will codeshare on these flights, allowing Aeroplan or MileagePlus members to accumulate and redeem miles. Eligible passengers and loyalty plan members will also be able to enjoy benefits including priority check-in, lounge access, priority boarding and other benefits where available.

Strong transborder schedule

The two carriers will operate more than 260 daily transborder departures in summer 2023, about a 20% increase in schedule capacity compared to summer 2022. The schedule will include up to 120 daily departures between the airlines’ hub markets, an increase from 101 in summer 2021. Flights will be timed to offer optimized connections at both Air Canada and United’s hubs and line stations.

The coordinated schedule will enable both carriers to offer shuttle-style hourly service throughout the day between key Air Canada and United hubs. The airlines will offer 29 daily flights with complementary timings between Torontoand New York/Newark and Chicago, and 11 daily flights between Vancouver and San Francisco. The shuttle schedule is as follows:

The enhanced schedule for the summer season also provides increased service between the U.S. and Western Canada. Between Vancouver & New York/Newark, Houston and Chicago, there will be nine daily flights while there will be seven daily flights between Los Angeles and Vancouver. A second daily flight will be added between Calgary and both Chicago and Houston, and a second daily flight will also be added from Edmonton to Denver.

Through our longstanding partnership with United Airlines, Air Canada has been able to offer customers ever-increasing and significant benefits. This summer, customers will have even greater choice and convenience with our joint summer schedule made possible by our airlines’ new enhanced transborder agreement. Together we will offer more than 260 daily departures to the U.S, and new non-stop flights from Vancouver and Calgary to Washington-Dulles. Our coordinated schedules will provide business travelers with the convenience of hourly service and the additional comfort of a business cabin on all flights between Torontoand New York and Chicago, as well as Vancouverand San Francisco.

said Mark Galardo, Senior Vice President Network Planning and Revenue Management, Air Canada.

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Air Canada and United will offer business class seats on every flight between their respective hubs. All eligible passengers will be able to enjoy Air Canada’s Maple Leaf Lounges and United’s lounges, as well as the benefits of the carriers’ Aeroplan and MileagePlus loyalty programs. Additionally, passengers will have a wider range of flight options with more than 80 transborder codeshare routes. Overall, passengers will be able to connect to over 100 codeshare destinations in the U.S. and 25 of the most popular cities in Canada.

We’re proud of our continued work with Air Canada to provide customers with even greater transborder connectivity, including adding more flights and new direct service to Calgary and Vancouver from Washington Dulles. With schedules designed to give customers more flexibility with timing and more convenient connection options, as well as the ability to enjoy the benefits of both airlines’ loyalty programs, our agreement with Air Canada makes United the premier U.S. airline for travel to Canada.

said Patrick Quayle, Senior Vice President of Global Network Planning and Alliances, United Airlines.

The schedule enhancement comes after both the airlines signed a joint business agreement in July 2022 for the Canada-U.S. transborder market, building on their long-standing partnership that will give more flight options and better flight schedules to passengers traveling between the two countries.

In 2019, the U.S.-Canada transborder market was the second largest international passenger air transportation market in the world and the largest international market for both Canada and the U.S., as measured by seats.

Keeping others at bay

Historically, United, Delta and American from the U.S. and Air Canada from Canada, were the only ones operating flights between the two countries. All of these are premium airlines, meaning that a ticket on any flight between the U.S. and Canada used to cost hundreds of dollars.

Lately, many new low-cost carriers like Flair Airlines and Porter Airlines have entered the market, making it hard for these premium airlines to keep a hold on the market. While there are always loyal customers who stick to a particular airline, the sweet fares offered by the low-cost carriers make it hard to survive in the market, whatever the conditions are.

The United-Air Canada partnership is very strong, in terms that they have been long-standing partners, so the advantage is there. In this type of competitive markets like the U.S.-Canada one, airlines generally tend to make partnerships with others, thus decreasing the competition and increasing the chances of getting a strong hold of the market.

The United-Air Canada partnership is very strong and it may happen that they dominate the U.S.-Canada market this summer.

Meanwhile, United recently made it easier for families to sit together.

Featured image by United and Air Canada

What do you think of United and Air Canada’s enhanced transborder schedule? Let me know in the comments section below.

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