November 29, 2017 9:51 am
Updated: November 29, 2017 9:11 pm

Hello San Francisco! Air Canada launching daily non-stop flight from Edmonton International Airport

WATCH ABOVE: A new non-stop flight to San Francisco from Edmonton was announced on Wednesday. It's a road the city has been down before, only to see such flights cancelled. So, is anything different this time around? Vinesh Pratap reports.

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The Bay Area will soon be a flight away thanks to Air Canada‘s launch of daily non-stop, year-round service on May 1, 2018 between Edmonton and San Francisco.

Flights to San Francisco will depart at 4:10 p.m. daily, while return flights to the Edmonton International Airport will take off from the California city at 11:50 a.m.

Vehicles wait outside the international terminal at San Francisco International Airport Tuesday, July 11, 2017, in San Francisco.

AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez

“Edmonton is one of Canada’s growing cities with a considerable young, entrepreneurial demographic marked by the unprecedented inclusion of three Edmonton restaurants in our recent Air Canada’s Best New Restaurants,” said Benjamin Smith, President, Passenger Airlines at Air Canada.

READ MORE: Canada’s best new restaurants in 2017, according to enRoute

Air Canada said the route represented a significant investment, but said Edmonton travellers have to use it or lose it. The airline has previously reduced service or cancelled routes due not enough passengers, including a direct flight to London’s Heathrow airport.

READ MORE: Air Canada stops flights from Edmonton to Heathrow

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Not only will the flights serve tourists headed to the California city, but it will also provide a connection between Silicon Valley‘s high-tech companies and Edmonton’s growing tech industry.

“This daily year-round service will serve the needs of leisure and business travellers, building on an already energetic startup scene in Edmonton and strong ties with northern California,” Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson said.

Economic Development and Trade Minister Deron Bilous said Silicon Valley businesses are already investing and expanding in Alberta.

“In my Silicon Valley trade missions those businesses have been clear that direct flights to San Francisco will mean more opportunities to work together to diversify our economy and create new jobs at home,” Bilous said.

READ MORE: Air Canada open to ultra-low-cost air fares to compete in changing market

Brad Ferguson, CEO of Edmonton Economic Development Corporation, also applauded the move, saying it was “of vital importance to our city.”

The flights will be operated by Jazz Aviation LP under the Air Canada Express brand, using Bombardier CRJ-705/900 jets with 12 Business Class seats and 64 Economy Class seats. The planes will be equipped with Wi-Fi and Air Canada’s touch-screen in-flight entertainment system.

The news comes on the heels of several other big announcements at the airport in recent weeks.

Two weeks ago, Costco announced it is opening a warehouse near the airport to serve people in the Leduc area. And at the end of October, development began on a new Marriott hotel on the airport grounds.

READ MORE: Development underway on hotel at Edmonton International Airport

Also last month, a new 50,000-square-foot, $10-million cargo facility was opened by Aeroterm. That same day, EIA also confirmed Korean Air Cargo is expanding its Edmonton service.

READ MORE: Cargo load expands as $10M facility opens at Edmonton International Airport

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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