‘Something exciting happening’: Winnipeg airport, WestJet add new direct flights

New options for travellers have landed at Winnipeg’s Richardson International Airport.

The Winnipeg Airports Authority (WAA), alongside Premier Wab Kinew, announced Monday that WestJet is adding new year-round daily service to both Montreal and Ottawa beginning June 3.

WestJet will also offer seasonal flights from Winnipeg to a popular U.S. location, especially with country music fans: Nashville, Tenn.

The flights, which will run twice a week between Sept. 16 and Nov. 15, are the first and only direct Winnipeg-to-Nashville options to date.

Country singer Leanne Pearson, a former Winnipegger now living in Nashville, told 680 CJOB’s The Jim Toth Show the news is music to her ears.

Travelling back home to Winnipeg, Pearson said, can be an ordeal.

“It’s the usual bumps and bruises of travelling anywhere … and what I’ve found over the past 10 or more years of travelling back and forth, we prefer Delta going through Minneapolis.

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“That’s just because the Minneapolis airport is so efficient, and it’s a direct path right to Winnipeg rather than going down to Atlanta or way over to Toronto.

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“So when I fly between Winnipeg and Nashville, I wait for those prices to be reasonably priced — Delta through Minneapolis — and plan my trip around those particular flights. But that’s about to change, which is wonderful.”

In a statement Monday, Kinew said the additional service is an example of positive change happening in the province.

“There’s something exciting happening in Winnipeg and Manitoba right now,” Kinew said.

“People across the country are recognizing the opportunities we have here — from our incredible low-carbon economy, to our arts, culture, music and sports.

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“The addition of these routes is part of that — making it easier to drive economic growth and attract visitors to our beautiful province.”

The move, WAA president Nick Hays said, is an example of WestJet’s continued growth at the Winnipeg airport and gives travellers more opportunities to connect with cities around the world.

Click to play video: 'Winnipeg airport logged 4 million passengers in 2023, a first since the pandemic'

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