Merged Canadian North airline announces new passenger schedule

A new flight schedule has been announced by the new airline created by the merger between Canadian North and First Air. 

Passengers will be able to fly from Ottawa to all serviced Qikiqtaaluk communities in same day

The new Canadian North airline will maintain the First Air livery. The new airline announced changes to its passenger schedule, effective Nov.1. (Jordan Konek/CBC)

A new flight schedule has been announced by the new airline created by the merger between Canadian North and First Air.

The new flights start running on Nov. 1, but are available for booking now.

It has changed the schedule between Ottawa and Iqaluit, with two flights servicing the route on weekdays. 

The flights will leave from Ottawa at 7:15 a.m. and 2:15 p.m. and return from Iqaluit at 11:55 a.m. and 6:45 p.m. 

With the earlier flight from Ottawa, passengers will be able to travel from Ottawa to all serviced Qikiqtaaluk communities in the same day, with a connection through Iqaluit.

On weekends, the current schedule will stay in effect, with a single 9:15 a.m. departure from Ottawa to Iqaluit, and a 1:45 p.m. departure from Iqaluit to Ottawa. 

Communities that currently have double departures — meaning flights from Canadian North and First Air that leave within a few minutes of each other — will drop down to one plane at those times. 

The airline has added different times to make up the seat capacity and has the ability to add a second plane during busy times, according to First Air's manager of communications Dan Valin.

Kitikmeot schedule changes

Other changes include daily return flights between Cambridge Bay and Yellowknife, with stops in Gjoa Haven, Taloyoak and Kugaaruk. Travellers in those communities will also be able to connect to a daily flight to Edmonton via Yellowknife.

The new schedule also saw the addition of a 1:27 p.m. departure from Cambridge Bay to Yellowknife, with a stop in Kugluktuk, on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays.

Currently, there are flights six days a week from Cambridge Bay to Yellowknife. 

The full schedule is available here

Canadian North and First Air are continuing to use separate reservation system for the time being, so the new flights can be booked on either airline's website or phone reservation system. 

The airline plans to merge its reservation system later this year. Starting Nov. 1, passengers will be able to check in at both First Air and Canadian Northern airport counters for flights under either name.

The Ilak and Pivut fares will continue to exist for the time being. 

The airline is looking at how to merge its two fare systems and simplify the fares from the current offerings (including flex, saver, etc.), according to Valin. 

New economy fare designations, beneficiary fare classes and corporate pricing will be introduced, while seat sales and group pricing will continue. 

It will eventually begin offering Aurora Rewards on all flights, in addition to continuing to offer Aeroplan Miles.