WestJet offers Penticton to Calgary flight

Penticton Airport finally gets an eastbound flight to Calgary.

PENTICTON — WestJet announced it will be offering flights from Penticton to Calgary beginning in October.

“This is phenomenal news for the City of Penticton and entire South Okanagan region,” said Penticton Mayor Garry Litke in a press release. “There has been an overwhelming demand in the South Okanagan for increased air service to Alberta. The City has been working hard to secure this eastern route and respond to the region’s needs, opening the door for increased business and tourism opportunities. We can’t wait to board the first non-stop flight to Calgary.”

The City has been trying to convince Air Canada to schedule an eastbound flight for years, but there were concerns of demand and resources.

City staff recently met with senior Air Canada executives to discuss new flight opportunities out of the Penticton airport, but WestJet has beat their competitor in the chase.

The Penticton Regional Airport (YYF) was selected by the Calgary-based airline as part of its regional carrier expansion program. Non-stop service on Bombardier Q400 NextGen planes will touch down in Penticton starting Oct. 26, 2014.

“Penticton’s community support and business case fits with our ongoing commitment to serving the Okanagan Valley,” said Ferio Pugliese, President, WestJet Encore. “We are excited to bring our low fares, great guest experience and convenient schedule to a community in need of air service options. Guests will now have access to 12 same-day connections to WestJet destinations out of Calgary.”

To mark the expansion, a group of WestJetters are flying to Penticton on Saturday, April 12, to meet the community at the Downtown Penticton Association Volunteer Appreciation Celebration, scheduled from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Gyro Park. The celebration honours the contributions of volunteers citywide and will feature free hotdogs, hamburgers, drinks and children's activities for volunteers and their families of all non-profits and charities in the community.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Meaghan Archer at marcher@infotelnews.ca or call 250-488-3065. To contact the editor, email mjones@infotelnews.ca or call 250-718-2724.

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