Last month, Air Canada unveiled its new leisure airline, Air Canada rouge. The unveiling marked a milestone in the transformation of Canada’s flag carrier to compete in the growing leisure travel sector.
Air Canada rouge will begin service in July 2013 and introduce new routes to Venice, Italy and Edinburgh, Scotland not currently operated by Air Canada.
Additionally, existing Air Canada flights operated in cooperation with Air Canada Vacations to Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Costa Rica will be operated by Air Canada rouge.
Flights to all destinations will be served in the carrier’s inaugural 2013 summer schedule will depart from Air Canada’s main hub at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport offering customers seamless connections with Air Canada, Air Canada Express and its Star Alliance partner flights.
Air Canada rouge customers will benefit from attractively priced through-fares from any point within Air Canada’s extensive network on a single ticket, as well as baggage checked through to final destination and Aeroplan mileage accumulation and redemption.
The Air Canada rouge fleet will initially be comprised of two Boeing 767-300ER aircraft to operate transatlantic flights in a two-cabin configuration offering a selection of rouge Plus seats with additional legroom and Premium rouge seats featuring additional seating comfort, space and enhanced meal and beverage service; and two Airbus A319 aircraft to operate North American flights in an all-economy configuration offering a selection of rouge Plus seats with additional legroom.
These four aircraft will be released from Air Canada’s existing fleet to Air Canada rouge as the mainline carrier takes delivery of two new Boeing 777-300ER aircraft in 2013.
Air Canada rouge will expand to other popular holiday destinations as Air Canada starts to take delivery of new Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft in 2014, thereby freeing up aircraft for deployment in the Air Canada rouge fleet. As this occurs, and subject to commercial demand, Air Canada rouge may operate up to 20 Boeing 767-300ER aircraft and 30 Airbus A319 aircraft, for a total of 50 aircraft, to pursue opportunities in markets made viable by Air Canada rouge’s lower operating cost structure. Flights operated by Air Canada rouge are subject to receiving all required regulatory approvals.
Two hundred new jobs will be created for flight attendants and pilots at Air Canada rouge, in addition to Air Canada hiring 900 employees to meet its own planned workforce requirements as part of its 2012-2013 recruitment program.