Earlier this month, Canada’s largest air carrier promised a long list of safety measures to persuade travellers to get back on its planes.
And today, Air Canada unveiled a list of nearly 100 destinations in its abridged summer schedule.
Its aircraft are currently flying to New York–LaGuardia, Washington-Dulles, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, and Chicago.
The company is considering expanding U.S. air service on June 22 if demand increases and if it can obtain regulatory changes.
This summer, Air Canada flights will also be available from Vancouver to the following international destinations: London, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Seoul.
In addition, Air Canada planes will be leaving Toronto to Frankfurt, London, Zurich, Tokyo, and Tel Aviv. And the airline will take passengers from Montreal to Frankfurt, London, Paris, and Brussels.
There are plans to add Athens, Rome, Geneva, Munich, Lisbon, Amsterdam, Rome, and Shanghai to Air Canada’s list of destinations.
“As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, during which as much as 95 percent of our flights stopped operating and which has left us flying to less than half last year’s destinations, our customers are expressing their eagerness to travel, where it is safe to do so,” executive vice president and chief commercial officer Lucie Guillemette said in a news release. “We are accordingly gradually opening for sale flights for the summer and beyond as we rebuild our network, leveraging our strong position as a global airline.”
Safety measures added
The summer schedule comes more than a week after Air Canada unveiled its “CleanCare+” biosecurity program to enhance customer confidence.
At airports, this includes face coverings for customers and employees, preboarding infrared temperature checks, and frequent sanitization of kiosks.
Inside the plane, cabins and bins are sanitized with an electrostatic sprayer and the airline has installed HEPA air-filtration systems.
Once passengers are seated, they’re given complimentary masks, gloves, bottled water, hand sanitizer, and disinfecting wipes. And in economy class, the seats adjacent to travellers are being kept vacant.
Flexible ticketing options added
Anyone who books Air Canada flights until June 30 for travel until June 30, 2021, can make use of a one-time change waiver up to two hours before departure.
This can be converted into the value into Aeroplan Miles with 65 percent bonus mileage.
Alternatively, the value of all tickets can be turned into a fully transferable Air Canada voucher with no expiration date.
“Both options, retroactive to March 1, give customers greater confidence and flexibility to plan and book travel with Air Canada,” Guillemette said.
Last year, Air Canada was voted the best airline in North America in a Skytrax survey of almost 20 million air travellers.
It was the third consecutive win for the Montreal-based company. And it came after Air Canada added complimentary sit-down meals crafted by Vancouver chef David Hawksworth in its signature suite.
This year, Georgia Straight readers voted Hawksworth as the city’s best chef for the second consecutive year in the Vancouver newspaper’s annual Golden Plates Awards.
North American markets gain ground to start the week – BNNBloomberg.ca
North American equity markets clawed back ground into the close of Monday’s trade, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index up 0.29 per cent, the S&P 500 gaining 0.38 per cent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising 0.36 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite Index up 0.66 per cent.
Equity markets had been mixed in earlier trading, as investors weighed the competing factors of economic reopenings and the rising tensions between the United States and China.
In Toronto, four of the 11 TSX subgroups closed in positive territory, with consumer discretionary, financials and materials leading the way. Consumer staples, information technology and health care were the lead laggards.
A big part of the weakness in health care stocks was the underperformance of Canopy Growth Corp., which finished the day as the worst performer on the index after a string of analyst downgrades. The analyst community has expressed concerns over the company’s lack of a clear path to sustained profitability after it withdrew its forecast last week.
Oil prices fluctuated throughout the day, with U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate up 0.1 per cent to US$35.53 per barrel. Alberta’s Western Canadian Select was up 3.16 per cent to US$29.08 per barrel.
The Canadian dollar gained more than a full cent against its U.S. counterpart to trade at 73.68 cents U.S., though the greenback was weaker against all of its major-market peers.
1:00 p.m. ET: North American equity markets rebound, oil pares losses
North American equity markets rebounded into the midday trade, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index and Dow Jones Industrial Average up 0.3 per cent each, the S&P 500 gaining 0.4 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite Index up 0.66 per cent.
In Toronto, only four of the 11 TSX subgroups were in positive territory, led by consumer discretionary, financials and materials stocks. Information technology, consumer staples and health care were the lead laggards.
120 of the index’s 230 members were higher with a pair of cannabis stocks bookending the composite. HEXO Corp. was the lead gainer on the TSX, up 10 per cent after Health Canada approved its facility in Bellville, Ontario. On the flip side, Canopy Growth Corp., was the biggest percentage loser, down nine per cent, after a slew of analyst downgrades after the company shelved its forecast for a path to profitability late last week.
Oil pared some of its earlier losses, with U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate down a little more than one-and-a-half per cent to trade at US$34.90 per barrel. Alberta’s Western Canadian Select was essentially unchanged at US$28.16 per barrel.
10 a.m. ET – North American stocks slip, oil falls as U.S.-China tensions escalate
North American equity markets kicked off the week in modestly negative territory, with the S&P/TSX Composite Index down a tenth of a per cent, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500 both falling 0.4 per cent and the Nasdaq Composite Index down 0.2 per cent.
Markets were under that modest pressure amid signs of a re-escalation of tensions between the United States and China, with Bloomberg News reporting Beijing has ordered a halt to imports of some American farm goods. Meanwhile, the U.S. is also facing a wave of civil unrest as demonstrators take to the streets to protest the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police, which has prompted some American cities to implement curfews.
Oil prices fell in the wake of those tensions, outweighing the impact of speculation the OPEC+ group of producers could be poised to implement a short extension of its output cuts in order to put some upward pressure on crude prices. U.S. benchmark West Texas Intermediate fell 2.5 per cent to US$34.60 per barrel, while Alberta’s Western Canadian Select dropped three per cent to US$27.34.
In Toronto, that weakness in crude weighed on the energy sector in early trading.
Another point of weakness was Canopy Growth Corp. The company’s shares fell about seven per cent after the firm was downgraded by four analysts following the cannabis producer’s disappointing quarterly results late last week.
The Canadian dollar rose a third of a cent against its American counterpart to 72.93 cents U.S., though the U.S. dollar was broadly weaker against its major global peers.
B.C. protects small businesses from evictions – CityNews Vancouver
VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) — The B.C. government is banning commercial landlords who refuse to apply for federal assistance from evicting small businesses that can’t pay rent due to the pandemic.
The order is meant to support the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program and restricts the termination of lease agreements and the repossession of goods and property, says a government release.
“The federal launch of the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance program has been a welcome step in B.C., but we heard from small businesses that they need us to help fill a gap that has left some of them unable to get the support they need,” said Carole James, Minister of Finance.
“We’re listening to small businesses and have their backs. Preventing landlords who are eligible for CECRA from evicting tenants can encourage landlords to apply for the program and give some temporary relief to businesses who have been hardest hit by the pandemic.”
Encouragement is what we are doing with this order @carolejames says
We need small biz to restart – we need them to to recover the economy.
To landlords she says: Having a long-term, dependable tenant is a benefit – the commercial rent relief will help#bcpoli @NEWS1130 #covid19
— LizaYuzda (@LizaYuzda) June 1, 2020
The emergency order restricting evictions is effective immediately and will continue for as long as the federal program is in place, which is currently until the end of June.
B.C. could extend the order if the federal program is, as well, James added.
The federal program is offering forgivable loans to eligible commercial property owners to reduce the rent for small business experiencing severe financial hardship due to COVID-19.
Property owners must offer a minimum of a 75 per cent reduction for the months of April, May, and June. The federal and B.C. governments will cover 50 per cent of the rent payments, while the tenants are responsible for 25 per cent of the rent, and landlords cover the remaining 25 per cent.
The federal program loans to landlords will be forgiven if they comply with program terms and conditions, including an agreement to not recover forgiven rent amounts when the program is over.
Should small businesses be protected from eviction? – Poll – Castanet.net
Small businesses in B.C. that have suffered significant revenue losses during the COVID-19 pandemic will be protected from eviction effective June 1.
The provincial government announced Monday new measures to protect small businesses that are eligible for federal commercial rent assistance, but are unable to access that assistance because their landlords won’t apply to the program.
“There are certainly some tenants who their landlords have been very clear that they don’t want to bother, they don’t want to take the time to apply for the federal program, and that then hurts the tenant, because the tenant doesn’t have the opportunity to be able to have that relief to help them,” said James.
“I expect that it will, I hope, make a difference in encouraging those landlords to apply now that they won’t be able to evict those tenants.”
Under an emergency act order, commercial landlords will be restricted from evicting tenants who have lost at least 70% of their revenue, and are thus eligible for Ottawa’s Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program, which can only be applied to by landlords.
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