Canada Jetlines says it can’t join the ultra low-cost carrier fray as scheduled because it can’t find the airplanes it needs to run the service. The company had hoped to match WestJet’s Swoop to get going in June but the global market for Boeing 737s is so tight it can’t make a deal on the equipment it needs. “Jetlines is in advanced negotiations with several major aircraft lessors to secure the aircraft required to support both its startup and growth plans,” the carrier said. “However, it will not attain a June, 2018, startup date as previously projected.”
The airline says it hopes to announce an airplane deal and a new startup schedule by summer, meaning it will have to play catchup with Swoop, which is starting a limited schedule based in Abbotsford and Hamilton in late June. Flair Air, based in Kelowna, has been flying for two years and will expand its schedule as Swoop and Jetlines get organized. An expanding world market for airline travel and issues with the delivery of next generation 737s and A320s have prompted mainstream carriers to hang on to older aircraft that would otherwise be on the secondary market by now.