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New WestJet discount airline service delayed until next year

A pilot taxis a Westjet Boeing 737-700 plane to a gate after arriving at Vancouver International Airport on February 3, 2014.
A pilot taxis a Westjet Boeing 737-700 plane to a gate after arriving at Vancouver International Airport on February 3, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

WestJet says the launch of its new no-frills, low-cost airline won’t be until next summer after initially announcing plans it would start offering flights later this year.

The Calgary-based airline says it expects to announce the initial flight schedule early in 2018 with service expected to start in the summer of next year.

READ MORE: WestJet names executive vice-president for new ‘ultra-low-cost carrier’

The news of the delay came as WestJet reported it earned $48.4 million or 41 cents per diluted share in its latest quarter.

That compared with a profit of $36.7 million or 30 cents per diluted share in the same quarter last year.

READ MORE: Here’s why low-cost airlines have a tough time surviving in Canada

Revenue in the quarter totalled nearly $1.06 billion, up from $949.3 million a year ago.

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WestJet says its operating margin grew to 7.4 per cent for the three-months ended June 30 compared with 6.5 per cent in the same quarter last year.

READ MORE: WestJet Rewards member profiles posted online after privacy breach

Capacity measured by available seat miles increased 6.3 per cent, while traffic measured by revenue passenger miles grew 8.9 per cent.

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