New Vancouver flight first step for more destinations at Nanaimo Airport

By Spencer Sterritt
October 10, 2017 - 5:29pm

Nanaimo Airport's president says they're actively looking at ways to offer more direct flights south of the border.The Canadian Press

NANAIMO — The Nanaimo Airport says a new daily flight to Vancouver is another step towards offering flights to sunny destinations such as Mexico.

Starting Dec. 14, WestJet will offer one mid-day flight to Vancouver, which will only take 15 minutes.

Mike Hooper, president and CEO of the Nanaimo Airport, said adding the quick route to Vancouver will offer more convenient options for those looking to travel and hoped it will soon be even easier.

“As we look to the future, we know we will have direct services to places like sun destinations, but as a first step this is fabulous to have,” he told NanaimoNewsNOW. “We look forward to growing the routes with WestJet.”

The WestJet conversation happened over many years, as well as with other airlines. Hooper said the Nanaimo Airport is working on developing as many routes as possible as the airport and area expands.

Air Canada currently has nine daily express flights from Nanaimo to Vancouver. A WestJet route to Edmonton was cancelled in March, 2016 after just a few months in service. Poor economic conditions in Alberta were blamed.

The airport grew 110 per cent in the last six years and Hooper said they expect 350,000 people will pass through their gates this year.

Along with the newly announced flight, the Nanaimo Airport is tripling the size of their terminal building and hopes to have a full customs facility in place within a few years.

Anyone curious about the airport can visit their open house on Thursday, Oct. 12 from 3 to 6 p.m. at their main terminal.

 

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UPDATE: Police say 7-year-old girl among three dead at Nanaimo house fire