WestJet cancels thousands of domestic flights through May as virus gashes sales

WestJet cancels thousands of domestic flights through May as virus gashes sales

CALGARY — WestJet Airlines Ltd. says it will cancel more than 4,000 domestic flights weekly in May as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to hammer the airline industry.

The company says it will remove some 600 daily flights from its schedule between May 5 and June 4 — about 18,000 trips in total —due to “significantly reduced guest demand” during the crisis.

The Calgary-based carrier says all international flights, including to the U.S., remain suspended through June 4.

Last week, Air Canada halted most international flights until June, while Air Transat and Sunwing Airlines Ltd. cancelled all trips until May 31.

The decisions extended the suspension of more than 160 Air Canada routes as well as Air Transat and Sunwing trips by another month as closed borders and vanishing demand ravage the travel sector.

WestJet and other airlines offer two-year vouchers for trips they’ve cancelled, though advocates argue travellers should be entitled to refunds for flight services paid for but not received, as in the United States and the European Union.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published April 22, 2020.

Companies in this story: (TSX:AC, TSX:TRZ).

The Canadian Press

WestJet

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