Taylor Bachrach has had enough with Air Canada. The Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP this week penned a letter to airline CEO Calin Rovinescu urging him to end a “self-perpetuating cycle” that is damaging the Smithers economy and hurting its residents.
“Air Canada suspended scheduled flights on April 1,” Bachrach explained in a Facebook post. “Since then, the airline has repeatedly offered assurances that they will return service to Smithers. First they said July 1. Then they pushed back the date to August. Now they claim October 1 is the date flights will finally restart. Meanwhile, residents have had their tickets cancelled due to the delays and businesses are beginning to question whether the airline will return to Smithers at all.”
In each of these cases, Air Canada apparently said there wasn’t enough demand for flights to resume service. But Bachrach questions that logic.
“The recurring postponements and ticket cancellations have severely undermined consumer confidence and caused many Smithers’ area residents to either book flights out of Terrace directly or to avoid flying altogether,” he argued in the letter. “With no confidence that flights will actually resume when Air Canada states they will, residents do not want to book flights, which, in turn, increases the chances that Air Canada will further delay a resumption of service.”
The Skeena MP is calling on the airline to resume service to Smithers and provide “full refunds to passengers whose flights are cancelled.”
Now the ball is in Air Canada’s court. “I hope Air Canada will listen to our concerns and understand how damaging the lack of scheduled flights is — not only to Smithers, but the surrounding communities as well,” Bachrach said.
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