News and notes: A new Canadian airline, free national park entry and questioning mass tourism

Here are some of the interesting travel news and releases that found their way to me in the past week.

Canada gets a new airline

NewLeaf Travel Company Inc. announced last week it will resume sales with ultra low fares and an expanded route map.

Customers will be able to book flights on the NewLeaf Travel Company website (GoNewLeaf.ca) to/from an expanded list of 12 Canadian cities: Halifax, Moncton, Hamilton, Winnipeg,Regina, Saskatoon, Edmonton, Kelowna, Kamloops, Fort St. John, Abbotsford and Victoria. The first flights will take off July 25, 2016.

In March 2016, the Canadian Transportation Agency (CTA) completed its review of licensing regulations and determined that, as a reseller of air services, NewLeaf Travel Company is not required to hold an airline license. Flights booked through NewLeaf will be operated by Flair Airlines, a licensed Canadian airline with an experienced crew and pilots flying Boeing 737‐400 passenger jets.


Canada’s national parks will be free on Canada Day

Parks Canada’s is inviting Canadians and international visitors to celebrate Canada’s 149th birthday on Friday, July 1, with free admission at all national parks, national marine conservation areas, and Parks Canada-administered national historic sites. Lockage at all stations on the Trent-Severn Waterway and the Rideau Canal as well as at Quebec’s historic canals will also be free for the day.

The federal government also announced that admission and lockage will be free all year in 2017 in celebration of Canada 150.

Visit www.pc.gc.ca to find out about the special events that Parks Canada is planning across the country on Canada Day.


 Is mass tourism worth it?

An increasing number of people is starting to question the mass tourism model, but are there practical alternatives to it? And what are the best destinations for those who choose an original and more sustainable travel style?

To answer these and more questions, Justraveling.com has compiled its Alternative Travel Index, which identifies the “most travelable” countries around the World. To get listed, a country needs to assure a good level of security and sanitation, to excel in terms of convenience and basic infrastructure, and to be attractive from the naturalistic and cultural point of view.

Within the main index, Spain ranks first, followed by Japan, Canada, Australia and Finland. Of the top 20 destinations, 17 are in Europe, which, notoriously, can count on an enviable cultural and natural heritage.  For more about Justraveling’s Alternative Travel Index at http://justraveling.com/index.

 


Are airplanes affecting the weather?

Clouds may have a net warming or cooling effect on climate, depending on their thickness and altitude. Artificially formed clouds called contrails form due to aircraft effluent, in a cloudless sky, contrails are thought to have minimal effect on climate. But what happens when the sky is already cloudy?

In a new study published in the journal Nature Communications, scientists from the University of Hertfordshire and Stockholm University show that contrails that are formed within existing high clouds increase the reflectivity of these clouds, i.e. their ability to reflect light. The researchers hope that their discovery offers important insights into the influence of aviation on climate.


No train in Maritimes? Take the bus!

Maritime Bus and VIA Rail Canada (VIA Rail) announced last week that they are enhancing their partnership and simplifying the travel experience in Eastern Canada. Starting July 14, 2016, travellers will be able to purchase Maritime Bus tickets online at viarail.ca.

This intermodal sales agreement will expand VIA Rail’s network. In one single transaction, travellers will be able to book a trip to the many destinations offered by Maritime Bus either as a connecting trip with the Ocean train between Montréal and Halifax or simply using VIA Rail website for a Maritime Bus trip only.

VIA Rail’s passengers will be able to easily plan a trip between Montréal and Charlottetown, Prince-Edward-Island; or Saint John, New-Brunswick; or Sydney, Nova Scotia. Passengers will be able to book their tickets online at viarail.ca and receive a combined itinerary including a Maritime Bus ticket and a VIA Rail boarding pass.

 

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