Grounded Air Canada planes sit on the tarmac at Pearson International Airport during the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. Air Canada plans to more than double its capacity this year compared with 2021, but says it will remain below its pre-pandemic level. CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette

Air Canada to ramp up capacity this year, but won’t yet reach pre-pandemic levels

Air Canada to ramp up capacity this year, but won’t yet reach pre-pandemic levels

MONTREAL — Air Canada plans to more than double its capacity this year compared with 2021, but says that is still below its pre-pandemic level.

In its outlook for this year the airline says its capacity, measured by available seat miles, for 2022 will be up about 150 per cent compared with last year.

However, Air Canada says its capacity will still only be about 75 per cent of where it was in 2019 as it continues to account for passenger demand, public health guidelines and travel restrictions.

The airline says it expects its adjusted cost per available seat mile for 2022 to increase about 13 to 15 per cent when compared with 2019.

Looking further into the future, Air Canada says it expects its capacity for 2024 to be about 95 per cent of its 2019 level.

Air Canada CEO Michael Rousseau says with the pandemic receding and travel returning, the airline has put in place a strategy to return to profitability and increase long-term shareholder value.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 30, 2022.

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