WestJet commences nonstop Edmonton-Minneapolis service

A WestJet 737 approaches to land.
Aero Icarus from Zürich, Switzerland, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Last week, Canadian low-cost carrier WestJet celebrated the commencement of its nonstop transborder service between Edmonton and Minneapolis, with the departure of WS1546 on Friday, June 2.

Growing Edmonton’s aviation pipeline, the new route unlocks direct connectivity from Alberta’s capital to the Midwest United States and beyond.

Increased transborder capacity

With the inclusion of Minneapolis to Edmonton’s network, WestJet has now increased Edmonton’s transborder capacity this summer by over 150 per cent.

The route addition also increases the total network capacity by over 40 per cent, marking the airline’s largest network expansion from a single city in its history.

“We are thrilled to be celebrating the departure of our third of five inaugural routes from Edmonton today, signifying our expanding commitment to the capital of WestJet’s home province,” said Chris Avery, WestJet Vice-President, Network Planning, Alliances and Commercial Development.

“Through our new service connecting Edmonton and Minneapolis, WestJet is doing our part to further enhance the economic success of the communities we serve through the implementation of strategic routes that serve to stimulate vital business and tourism opportunities.”

From left: Malcolm Bruce, CEO, Edmonton Global, Riccardo Simonelli, WestJet, Director Canadian Airports, Tanni Doblanko, Leduc County, Mayor, Carmen Donnelly,YEG Airport, Vice President, Passenger Experience & Terminal Operations, Andre Carbould, City of Edmonton, City Manager, Deanna Dow, YEG Airport, Manager of Air Service Development (Photo: CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)


“WestJet has been an important partner for YEG since their inception, more than 27 years ago, and we are proud that our relationship continues to grow and strengthen,” said Myron Keehn, President & CEO, Edmonton International Airport (YEG).

“This new non-stop route to Minneapolis is an exciting addition to the more than 50 non-stop destinations at YEG and will serve as an important connection for business, tourism and cargo,” he concluded.

The departure of WS1546 is the first of five weekly flights that will travel between Edmonton and Minneapolis this summer.

WestJet celebrates inaugural take off of service between Edmonton and Minneapolis (Photo: CNW Group/WESTJET, an Alberta Partnership)

About WestJet

WestJet is a Canadian low-cost carrier headquartered in Calgary, Alberta. It is the second-largest airline in Canada, after Air Canada, and flies to over 100 destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean, Europe, and Asia.

Originally founded in 1996 by Clive Beddoe and a group of investors, in the airline started with just three aircraft and five destinations, but it has grown rapidly since then.

WestJet is known for its friendly service and its low fares. The airline has won numerous awards for its customer service, including being named the “Best Airline in North America” by Skytrax in 2019.

WestJet currently operates a fleet of over 180 aircraft and employs over 14,000 people.

WestJet competition

Air Canada is the largest airline in Canada and is currently WestJet’s main competitor. Air Canada offers a wider range of destinations and services but this is perhaps offset by the low-cost carrier’s competitive air fares and friendly level of service.

Air Transat is a Canadian leisure airline that specializes in flights to the Caribbean, Mexico, and the United States, and also offers competition with its relaxed travel service.

Flair Airlines is a Canadian ultra-low-cost carrier that offers flights to destinations in Canada and the United States. Flair Airlines is the newest entrant in the Canadian airline market.

The carrier operates on the ultra-low-cost model whereas WestJet offers such amenities as free checked bags and seat assignments.

Porter Airlines is a Canadian regional airline that offers flights to destinations in Ontario and Quebec. Porter Airlines is known for its premium service and its convenient location at Billy Bishop Airport in Toronto.

Swoop is a Canadian ultra-low-cost carrier that offers flights to destinations in Canada and the United States. Swoop is perhaps similar to Flair Airlines in the respect that it operates on an ultralow cost basis however, in the same way, it does not offer some of the amenities that WestJet does as a low-cost airline.

By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 5 Min Read
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