Pacific Coastal Airlines celebrated their inaugural flight between Vancouver and Tofino on Tuesday afternoon, April, 3.
The Bella Coola born airline now operates a daily, afternoon service between the Tofino-Long Beach Airport (YAZ) and Vancouver (YVR).
The new flight will operate seven days a week, leaving Vancouver International Airport’s South Terminal at 3:00p.m. and arriving at the Tofino-Long Beach Airport at 3:45p.m. It departs YAZ at 4:15p.m. arriving back at YVR at 5:00p.m.
A second daily flight on Fridays and Sundays will be added during the peak summer season from June 4 until Sept. 3, 2018.
Pacific Coastal will employ the 19 passenger pressurized turboprop Beech 1900 aircraft on the new route. The 1900 offers comfortable seating, generous cargo capacity, and is designed to operate in all weather conditions, according to a statement on the airlines’ website.
Director of Business Development and Corporate Communications Kevin Boothroyd said the B.C. owned and operated airline is older than West Jet and Air Canada.
“We don’t just fly to communities, we become part of the community,” he said.
Team Canada surfer Noah Cohen received a complimentary ticket on the inaugural flight from Tofino to Vancouver.
“The first flight was amazing. Forty-minutes later and we’re here instead of 400-hours in a ferry terminal,” he told the Westerly after touching down in Vancouver.
“I’m just excited that it’s here and I can finally travel with surfboards from Tofino to Vancouver. It’s a pretty exciting prospect after all these years of not being able to do it,” said Cohen.