Air Canada stops flights from Edmonton to Heathrow

EDMONTON  Air Canada announced Monday it will no longer be flying from Edmonton to London.

The airline’s non-stop flight between Edmonton International Airport and London’s Heathrow Airport has been shut down.

“With the current economic environment in Alberta, we have seen a shift in demand going forward,” said Angela Mah, a spokesperson for Air Canada.

The Edmonton-Heathrow route has been filled with difficulty and frequent service suspensions. Since Air Canada began flying that route in 2006, the flight was cancelled during winter months, and then suspended altogether for a short time. The flight was then reinstated, but only used three days a week.

READ MORE: Air Canada customers angry after flight pass deal removed from accounts

Air Canada plans on offsetting the shutdown with more domestic flights based out of Edmonton. Mah said the airline plans to “adjust some regional flying to better reflect current and projected demand.”

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Mah also said Air Canada is planning to increase capacity on flights from Edmonton to Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal.

Airport officials are unfazed by the closure.

“We already have the best service to Europe we’ve ever had,” said Edmonton airport spokesperson Heather Hamilton. In the last few years, EIA has signed deals with several major international airlines, such as Iceland Air, Air China, and KLM.

READ MORE: WestJet expanding Edmonton regional services

Hamilton noted that WestJet still plans to run non-stop flights between Edmonton and London’s smaller Gatwick Airport, starting in May.

“In terms of seat capacity, the WestJet flight will be an adequate replacement,” said Hamilton. The Edmonton-Gatwick flight will be maintained year-round, unlike the Air Canada flight, and will be less expensive.

However, since the WestJet flight does not begin service until May, Edmontonians won’t have a direct flight to London for another six months.

Mah said Air Canada may reinstate the Edmonton-Heathrow flight in the future.

“We will adjust flying accordingly as market conditions change.”

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