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Air Canada

Air Canada is the country's flag carrier its largest airline, flying to more than 220 destinations worldwide, including 60 within the United States. Founded in 1937 as Trans-Canada Airlines, it officially changed its name to Air Canada in 1965 and has been headquartered at the Montreal-Trudeau International Airport in Saint-Laurent, Quebec since 1990. Air Canada is one of the founding members of the Star Alliance—the biggest airline association in the world—and is highly rated in terms of its overall service, while its business class is one of the best in North America.

by Business Traveler

October 01, 2022

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Where does Air Canada fly?

The main hub of Air Canada is the Montreal-Trudeau airport, with its headquarters located within the complex. Its other hubs are the Toronto Pearson Airport, Vancouver International Airport and Calgary International Airport. Air Canada flies to 222 destinations worldwide - the most out of any Canadian airline - and while a significant majority of these are in North America, it also offers long-haul options to Europe, Asia, Oceania, South America and the Caribbean. A mixture of Airbus and Boeing planes make up the carrier's 191-strong fleet, which conducts over 1,500 daily flights.


What is Air Canada's Aeroplan program?

Passengers of Air Canada can sign up for its frequent flyer programme called Aeroplan, completely free of charge. Points are earned in a similar way to other schemes, but the amount that you earn is contingent on more variables. Whereas other frequent flyer programmes have a flat rate of x amount of points per dollar spent or miles flown, Aeroplan takes into account factors like the demand for the flight or departure/destination city.

You can also earn points by shopping with Aeroplan credit cards, buying services from Air Canada’s partners - including Uber and Starbucks - or booking holiday services through the airline’s travel portal. Points can then be redeemed in a number of ways. Generally speaking, buying flights offers the best value for money, however, these aren’t the only options. You can also purchase cabin upgrades, gift cards, holiday experiences or donate to charity.

Those that find themselves flying with Air Canada regularly can become eligible for Elite Status. Once this is achieved, passengers can take advantage of a range of perks and benefits, from priority boarding to lounge access and free checked-in bags. There are three elements to qualifying.

 Status qualifying miles (SQM) - percentage of distance flown
 Status qualifying segments (SQS) - individual flights
 Status qualifying dollars (SQD) - a percentage of dollars spent on flights

Passengers need to achieve a certain level of SQM or SQS plus SQD in order to move through the ranks. The higher you go, the better the benefits and perks become.

What are Air Canada's ticketing options?

Air Canada has three different types of fare, with even its basic offering providing a level of comfort not normally seen in economy.

Economy Class

 Free meals with wine and spirits
 Blankets and pillows
 USB charging port
 Private entertainment system
 One personal item and one carry-on
 Standard seating
 Last to board
 Allocated seats (can pay extra to choose)

Economy Premium

 Free meals with wine and spirits
 Blankets and pillows
 USB charging port
 Private entertainment system
 One personal item and one carry-on
 Two checked in bags (27kg)
 Larger seats (up to 38-inch pitch)
 Priority boarding
 Choose seats

Signature Class

 Free restaurant quality meals with wine and spirits
 Luxury bedding kit
 USB charging port
 Private entertainment system
 One personal item and one carry-on
 Two checked-in bags (32kg)
 Executive pods with lie-flat beds,
 Priority boarding
 Choose seats

What are Air Canada's baggage fees?

All Air Canada passengers can bring a complimentary personal item and carry-on for every journey. Those travelling in premium economy and signature class can also bring two checked-in bags. Economy passengers wishing to check in a bag must pay to do so.

 1st bag (up to 51lbs) - $30
 2nd bag (up to 51lbs) - $50

Overweight bags

Checked-in bags between 51 and 70 pounds will incur a minimum $100 fee. Bags over 70lbs will not be accepted

Oversized bags

Checked-in bags between 63 and 115 linear will incur a minimum $100 fee. Bags over 115 linear inches will not be accepted.