New Embraer jets will allow Porter Airlines to expand across North America

Porter Airlines Embraer airplane

Toronto-based Porter Airlines has ambitions to expand beyond its current regional routes in eastern North America to become a bigger player across the continent.

It’s being tight-lipped about where those new destinations will be beyond stating they are considering routes in the west, the southern United States, Mexico and the Caribbean. One map of potential destinations includes numerous American destinations such such as Miami and Los Angeles along with much of western Canada.

The expansion will be made possible once they receive delivery by mid-2022 of 80 new Embraer E195-E2 aircraft which have transcontinental range. It will be the first airline to operate these planes in North America.

The aircraft are being acquired by Porter Aircraft Leasing Corp., a sister company of Porter Airlines. The total aircraft order is valued at up to US$5.82 billion at current list prices, with 30 firm commitments and 50 purchase right options.

The ability to convert purchase rights to smaller E190-E2s is included in the agreement. This provides opportunities to introduce non-stop service in markets where connecting flights are often the only option today. It also enables higher-frequency service for routes with greater demand.

Porter intends to operate the E2s to popular destinations from Ottawa, Montreal, Halifax and Toronto Pearson International Airport.

“We believe that now is the right time to make this investment as the pandemic resets the aviation landscape. Adding a diverse selection of popular business and leisure destinations to our network means that we are better positioned to serve the needs of many more passengers,” said Michael Deluce, president and CEO, Porter Airlines.

While establishing service at Pearson Airport for the first time, flights from Porter’s existing hub at downtown Toronto’s Billy Bishop Airport remain core to its business and will continue with high-frequency regional service on turboprop aircraft. Service is confirmed to restart at Billy Bishop on Sept. 8, following a temporary shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic and associated travel restrictions. The E2s will not operate at this airport.

The E195-E2 accommodates between 120 and 146 passengers.

Flight Aware lets you map airline flights around the world

Flight Aware screenshot

There are numerous flight trackers online which let #avgeeks track flights on every speck of the globe.

I’m a fan of Flight Aware, although am too cheap and not that plane obsessed that I subscribe to their premium service, but if you’re a hardcore airplane fan, you might want to consider it.

Click on one of the thousands of plane icons on Flight Aware map and you get information about the flight’s point of origin and destination along with vital flight data and other details about the plane and its flight history.

While I was grounded from travel during the pandemic, I would like to call up Flight Aware to look at the flights around me and in exotic locales to imagine what it was like to be flying again. Whenever a plane would fly overhead, I’d check to see where it was coming from or where it was going to and envied those aboard.

If you’re curious about the ebb and flow of flights around the world, then Flight Aware is a great tool to turn you into a planespotter. Or you can simply use it to track the flights of friends and family as they finally fly to reunite with each other.

Travel Trivia Quiz #6: Which airline tail is that?

airplanes lined up at the airport

How good are you at identifying airlines from the tails on their airplanes? If you’ve spent enough time around airports, chances are good that you recognize a lot of them, but some aren’t so obvious. Test your knowledge with our airline logo quiz:

Welcome to your Travel Trivia Quiz #6 - Airline Tails

Which airline logo is this?airline logo
Which airline logo is this?airline logo
Which airline logo is this?airline logo
Which airline logo is this?
Which airline logo is this?airline logo
Which airline logo is this?
Which airline logo is this?airline logo
Which airline logo is this?
Which airline logo is this?airline logo
Which airline logo is this?airline logo

Let Airwander help you find stopover destinations when you fly

Airwander screenshot

Stopovers are an underappreciated way to discover new places.

Most of the time, we think of them as inconvenient stops on the way to the place we really want to visit, but if you’re strategic about your stopovers, you can use them to explore cities you’ve never been to before.

With multi-day stopovers, you can create a mini-holiday on the way to your destination and even a second one on the way back. In some cases, adding stopovers can actually end up saving you money on your airfare because people usually pay a premium for direct, non-stop flights.

Airwander is a website that can help you find flights with stopovers. Just plug in your point of origin and destination and it serves up stopover suggestions for you to consider. It’s as simple as that.


Harbour Air moves closer to being the world’s first all-electric airline

Harbour Air's eBeaver, powered by magniX, shown during a recent test flight. The next iteration of ePlanes will include battery power supplied by H55.

If all goes according to plan, the world’s first electrically-powered commuter airplane to fly regularly-scheduled commercial flights will be Canadian.

It will be a while before the technology advances to the point where big international carriers are flying electric planes, but until then British Columbia’s regional airline Harbour Air is blazing the trail by teaming up with magniX and H55 to certify the world’s first electric Beaver (eBeaver) commuter airplane.

The companies are working with Transport Canada to certify the installation of the magniX electric propulsion unit and the H55 enhanced battery system in order to transform Harbour Air’s seaplanes into an all-electric commercial fleet.

After the successful first flight of the Harbour Air eBeaver powered by magniX in December 2019 and ongoing flight tests since then, the companies have teamed up with H55 to use its modular battery technology to expand the eBeaver’s balance to weight ratio and endurance. 

The de Havilland Canada Beaver is a legendary aircraft having first flown in 1947 and is used around the world in a variety of roles. It is best known in Canada for its use as a bush plane.

Harbour Air bills itself as the world’s largest seaplane airline. It has more than 40 aircraft and offers up to 300 daily scheduled flights, scenic tours, adventure packages,and private flights. With extensive scheduled flight service connecting downtown VancouverVictoriaSeattle (WA), NanaimoTofinoWhistlerRichmond (YVR South), SecheltSalt Spring IslandPitt MeadowsMaple Bay and Comox.