Air Canada grounds its Boeing Max 8s until at least July 1 to provide certainty
An Air Canada Boeing 737 Max aircraft arriving from Toronto prepares to land at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., on March 12, 2019. Two Canadian airlines dealing with the grounding of Boeing Max 8 jets say they have re-assigned other planes to accommodate travellers returning home from March Break vacations.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
The Canadian Press
Published Tuesday, March 19, 2019 9:30AM EDT
MONTREAL - Air Canada says it intends to remove its grounded Boeing 737 Max 8 jets from service until at least July 1 in order to provide more certainty for passengers that wish to book flights in the coming months.
Airlines around the world have been working to redeploy their fleets since their Max 8s were grounded last week following the deadly crash of an Ethiopian Airlines flight that killed all 157 people on board, including 18 Canadians.
Air Canada says it has now adjusted its schedule through to April 30 to cover 98 per cent of its planned flights.
It is also updating its May schedule to re-accommodate customers and optimize its fleet.
Air Canada says it has taken several steps to adjust for grounded Max 8s, which represent about six per cent of its total fleet capacity.
Among other things, it has substituted different aircraft in its fleet, chartered flights or leased aircraft from Air Transat, suspended some routes temporarily, and adjusted its rebooking policy for affected customers.