Porter Airlines to Restart Operations on September 8

 - July 6, 2021, 8:15 AM
A Porter Airlines De Havilland Dash 8-400 prepares to take off from Toronto's Billy Bishop Airport in 2016. (Photo: Flickr: Creative Commons (BY) by erniedog1982)

Toronto-based Porter Airlines will re-start operations on September 8 with the reopening of the city's Billy Bishop International Airport to scheduled traffic, the airline confirmed on July 5. The airline ceased operations with its De Havilland Dash 8-400 twin turboprop aircraft in March 2020 due to Covid-19-related public health and travel restrictions.

Porter’s initial schedule calls for daily service from September 8 to Ottawa (six flights), Montreal (six flights), and Thunder Bay (three flights) from Toronto. On September 13 it plans to add Ottawa-Halifax twice a day, and a single round trip daily between Montreal and Halifax and Quebec City and Toronto. The remainder of the schedule covers the start of further service to various destinations in Canada and the U.S.—including New York, Boston, Chicago, and Washington—on September 17, followed by six Canadian destinations on October 6.

When Porter first suspended operations on March 20 last year, it expected to resume services within 10 weeks, on June 1. However, it had to suspend service several more times until finally getting word about the downtown airport’s reopening this September.

Billy Bishop Airport’s closing to commercial service in March 2020 forced Porter to suspend service to its home base, even as the airport remained open during the pandemic to ensure continued operations for Ornge medevac service, and to serve regional carriers such as FlyGTA and Cameron Air, general aviation pilots, and tour operators such as Helitours.

Billy Bishop operator PortsToronto said on Monday that it has begun the process of recalling staff and preparing the airport for Porter's re-start.