WestJet cancels direct flights between 3 Canadian cities and Europe for summer 2023
Company says reasons include staffing issues, inflation
WestJet has cancelled its flights between three Canadian cities and Europe for this summer.
Previously, WestJet offered direct flights from Halifax to London Gatwick, Dublin, Glasgow and Paris during the summer months.
WestJet's transatlantic service to Europe has also been suspended from Vancouver and Toronto. It's unclear what airports WestJet flies to in Europe from those two cities.
In a news release on Monday, the airline said the suspension was temporary, but also that it will look at resuming transatlantic service in 2024.
A spokesperson for WestJet said the suspensions are due to "compounding factors such as staffing levels across the industry, inflation and deploying our aircraft to meet the demand of our guests while enabling us to re-position our investments to better serve Canadians for years to come."
WestJet said tickets for the summer 2023 European routes from Halifax were never made available for sale.
The airline said it was planning to enhance service in Canada, including between Halifax and Western Canada.
In a statement to CBC News, Halifax Stanfield International Airport said it was "disappointed WestJet won't be back this summer ... but we understand they are dealing with capacity challenges not a lack of interest or support in serving this market."
The airport said it has year-round daily non-stop flights operated by Air Canada between Halifax and London Heathrow, the largest hub airport in the United Kingdom.
Non-stop routes critical for tourism and trade
The airport said peak summer travel will be supported by additional flights between Halifax and Frankfurt offered by Condor and Eurowings Discover. The companies will each offer three non-stop, weekly flights.
The airport's statement said non-stop routes are critical for tourism and trade.
"We continue to work closely with existing and prospective airlines, and we will pursue every opportunity to increase Nova Scotia's connections to the world," it said.
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