Propellor Power for WestJet as Canada Gets More Small Planes on Small Routes
We knew that WestJet was adding more space to certain seats, but now it looks like they’re into adding some brand new planes as well. We won’t get into the industry this-and-that over the decision, but basically it looks as though WestJet wants to compete head-to-head with Air Canada on shorter trips. These smaller routes require some smaller planes, so WestJet just made a call over to Bombardier to add some propeller power to their fleet.
WestJet may be really good at flying Boeing 737s, and in fact that’s all they’ve been flying for quite some time. However, now that they’re planning a little bit of a more regional operation the plan is to add plenty of Bombardier Q400s. The initial order was for around 20 or so aircraft, and if things go well they might just order up an additional 25 planes. Things are still in the planning stages as of right now, but the plan is to get those babies up in the air at some point in 2013.
According to the folks over at AirlineReporter, it sounds like the two airlines—both WestJet and the new regional WestJet—will have separate operating certificates, but all the flying fun will be done under the same name, same brand, same livery.
The only bummer is that these smaller planes might just replace traditional 737 service on existing routes where there aren’t enough butts in the seats, as WestJet would obviously like to move the bigger planes to bigger routes where possible.
For now we’ll just wait and see what WestJet has up their sleeve, but it sounds like way more planes, people, and pilots when next year rolls around.
[Photo: Bombardier via AirlineReporter.com]