World News – CA – BUBBLE TROUBLE: WestJet slashes service and jobs in Maritimes


WestJet to cut service to four cities in Atlantic Canada and cut service to two more, citing the region’s tourism bubble and rising costs

Calgary-based airline move announced on Wednesday will result in the layoff of 100 corporate and operational support staff

WestJet will indefinitely suspend operations in Moncton, Fredericton, Sydney and Charlottetown as of November 2 This will also « significantly » cut service to Halifax and St John’s, the airline said on Wednesday

« It has become impossible to serve these markets and these decisions were unfortunately inevitable as demand is wiped out by the Atlantic bubble and rising third-party fees, » said WestJet President and CEO, Ed sims

« Since the start of the pandemic we have made efforts to maintain essential air service to all of our national airports, but we are off the runway and have been forced to suspend service in the region without sector support »

The Atlantic bubble, made up of the four Maritime provinces, was created in the wake of the pandemic, allowing residents to freely cross provincial borders without having to isolate themselves

Foreigners entering the bubble are subject to strict conditions, including mandatory 14-day isolation.In the case of Newfoundland and Prince Edward Island, non-residents are not not allowed entry unless they are an essential worker or cannot prove that their visit is essential

WestJet’s move to remove more than 100 weekly flights from its itinerary, nearly 80% of its seating capacity in Atlantic Canada

The move also results in the permanent layoff of WestJet employees in affected cities, adding to job losses the airline announced earlier this year due to the pandemic and word in July that the airline would double its flight capacity by reactivating idle routes earlier in the year

WestJet says it has no timetable for returning service to normal in Atlantic Canada

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WestJet, Atlantic Canada, St John’s

World News – CA – BUBBLE TROUBLE: WestJet slicing service, jobs in Maritimes


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