Browsing Tag: YVR

The Pacific Coastal Air Beech 1900D we flew back to Vancouver

The Pacific Coastal Air Beech 1900D we flew back to Vancouver

Why drive hours to Canada just to take two 20 minute flights on a pair of Beechcraft 1900Ds, on two different airlines? Why not?

Back in February, my friend (and sometimes contributor to AirlineReporter) Jason made a visit to Seattle from his home in New York. He stayed with another friend of mine Jeremy (who is pretty much my AvGeek archnemesis and really good friend — it is how I roll). Instead of doing the normal (and boring) touristy stuff, Jeremy had another idea in mind. He wanted to create a fun little AvGeek adventure, taking two different forms of aviation transportation on an amazing day-trip in Canada. I was down.

NERDS! Jeremy and Jason welcome our plane back to YVR.

NERDS! Jeremy and Jason welcome our plane back to YVR.

He ran through different options and landed on taking two small airlines from Vancouver (YVR) to a small town called Campbell River, BC (YBL). I was told what tickets to purchase and what time to be at his house — that is all I needed. With my passport and GlobalEntry card in hand (yay, I actually got to use it for once), I was ready for our little adventure.

Flying from Vancouver (YVR) to Campbell River (YBL) and the star is Seattle – Image: GCMap.com

An Air Canada 777-300ER being prepared for a transcontinental flight from Vancouver to Toronto.

An Air Canada 777-300ER being prepared for a transcontinental flight from Vancouver to Toronto

Earlier this summer, we had the opportunity to try out Air Canada’s new Signature Class cabin and lounge experiences.

Launched in June, the service is aimed squarely at the business/first class traveler, and competes quite readily with existing offerings by its North American mainline-carrier rivals.

Domestic Signature service is offered on flights between Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Vancouver to Toronto; daily flights between Montreal and New York-Newark to Vancouver; between Calgary, Edmonton, and Toronto; and between Toronto and Honolulu. Internationally, it’s offered on all Air Canada flights serviced using Boeing 767, 777, and 787, as well as Airbus A330 aircraft.

The routing for my flights were SEA-YVR-YYZ-SEA. The hop from Seattle to Vancouver was in standard coach class on a venerable Bombardier Q400.

Cathay Pacific's first A350 from HKG to YVR is ready for a tug to pull it to the gate

Cathay Pacific’s first A350 from HKG to YVR is ready for a tug to pull it to the gate

Almost 35 years ago, Cathay Pacific Airways (CX) began its international expansion to North America, flying a Boeing 747-200 from Hong Kong (HKG) to Vancouver, BC (YVR). It was the first airline to fly nonstop between the two key Pacific Rim cities, and on Tuesday morning, Cathay Pacific introduced a new aircraft type on the route.

The airline’s Airbus A350-900XWB, B-LRI, touched down in the pouring rain just after sunrise, almost an hour ahead of its 8:00 AM scheduled arrival time. I was with the media group, set up on the south ramp for the A350’s expected arrival on YVR’s runway 08R. But just a few minutes before landing, the plane’s approach was changed to the north runway, 08L.

British Airways BA85 rolls out on YVR's Rwy 26L - the first scheduled A380 in Vancouver. Photo: Leighton Matthews | Pacific Air Photo

British Airways flight BA85 rolls out on YVR’s Rwy 26L – the first scheduled A380 in Vancouver – 
Photo: Leighton Matthews | Pacific Air Photo

Western Canada’s first scheduled Airbus A380 service began on Sunday evening, with the arrival of British Airways flight BA85 at Vancouver International Airport. YVR is the airline’s only Canadian A380 destination, and is one of only nine city-pairs worldwide served by one of British Airways’ eleven megajets.

The A380 replaces British Airways’ daily London-YVR Boeing 747 service for the summer season. “This is a terrific market for us, it does tremendously well, so the A380 just perfectly suits the market” says Robert Antoniuk, British Airways VP Customer Service and Operations, North America West & Mexico. “This flight is absolutely full to capacity today.” The four-cabin A380 has a total of 469 seats, a significant jump from the 345-seat 747 it replaces.