Air Canada’s first daily flight to Brisbane from Vancouver touched down on Friday morning, marking the first nonstop scheduled service between Canada and Brisbane.
The inaugural flight AC35 was operated by Boeing 787-8 C-GHPV, and touched down at 7:07am. The 251-seat 787 made the trans-Pacific journey in 14 hours 14 minutes, having departed Vancouver at 11:45 Wednesday evening (crossing the international date line in the meantime).
Brisbane becomes Air Canada’s second Australian port as the airline also flies daily to Sydney using either Boeing 777-200LRs or, during peak seasons, the larger 777-300ER.
“Our new Brisbane flights complement our daily flights between Canada and Sydney, solidifying our market-leading position as the airline providing the most seats between Canada and Australia,” Benjamin Smith, president, passenger airlines at Air Canada, said in a statement.
“The seamless connections through in-transit pre-clearance facilities combined with our extensive domestic Canada and USA network radiating from Vancouver position YVR to be the preferred trans-Pacific gateway for business and leisure travellers alike.”
Air Canada schedules flight AC35 to depart Vancouver at 2345, arriving in Brisbane at 0715 two days later. The reciprocal AC36 is timed to depart Brisbane at 1040 and land in Vancouver at 0715 the same day.
“No airport in Canada has ever had service to Brisbane; but this service has come about because of our strength as both a destination and a connecting hub, and because of our industry-beating airline rates and charges program,” said Vancouver Airport Authority president and CEO Craig Richmond.
“In this process we’ve built strong relationships with Canadian and Australian tourism partners and with Brisbane Airport, who we’ll continue to work with to make this new route successful.”
The Brisbane services will initially be operated by 787-8s, fitted with 20 business class suites, 21 premium economy and 210 economy class seats. From October the route is due to be operated by the larger, 298-seat 787-9.
Air Canada says the Vancouver-Brisbane services are part of an ongoing international expansion, following the recent launch of Toronto-London Gatwick and Toronto-Prague services. New Toronto-Budapest, Toronto-Warsaw, Toronto-Glasgow, Toronto-Seoul, Montreal-Casablanca, Montreal-Lyon, Vancouver-Dublin and Vancouver-Delhi services are also planned this year.