Air Canada eyes South America-Europe air bridge

Air Canada is about to begin freighter service to Latin America and Europe.

One of Cargojet's eight 767-300 freighters.

One of Cargojet’s eight 767-300 freighters.

Canada-based all-cargo carrier Cargojet is close to finalizing a deal with Air Canada that, initially, would see Cargojet operating 767-300 freighters on an ACMI basis for Air Canada on routes to South America. Later this year, the network will be extended to include Europe – essentially giving Air Canada a main-deck bridge connecting South America to Europe, via the US and Canada.

The South American service is scheduled to begin 9 June, with the first routes (assuming regulatory approval) to be:

  • Toronto to Bogota and Lima via Atlanta
  • Mexico City via Dallas/Fort Worth.

Air Canada said it expected to add freighter service from Toronto to Europe in the second half of 2016, but no details have been released regarding the European destinations, or the total number of aircraft involved in the deal.

Turning to Cargojet, Canada’s main-deck specialist currently operates a 22-unit freighter fleet, including eight 767-300 freighters (a mix of Boeing and Bedek conversions), two 767-200Fs, five 757-200PCFs, and seven 727-200Fs. (See below for videos of each of the four types Cargojet operates.)

Regarding the 767 freighters, Jamie Porteous, Cargojet’s Executive Vice President & Chief Commercial Officer made the interesting comment that the carrier currently operates them “primarily for its domestic Canadian overnight network… and all of these aircraft are available during the day and on weekends.”

And now, the videos

Cargojet 767-300BCF landing and taking off from Prestwick in ACMI service to LOT Polish Airlines

A Cargojet 767-200F loading and then taking off from Ottawa (YOW)

Cargojet operates more 727-200Fs than any other carrier. Here is one of them taking off at sunrise from Montreal’s Val-d’Or (YVO) headed for Iqaluit in the far north.

And finally, here’s one of Cargojet’s 757-200PCFs landing and taking off (steeply) from Toronto Pearson (YYZ).

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