Skip to main content
Welcome to
super saver spring
offer ends april 20
save over $140
save over 85%
$0.99
per week for 24 weeks
Welcome to
super saver spring
$0.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

WestJet Airlines Ltd. says it plans to resume flying its fleet of Boeing 737 Max passenger jets on Jan. 21, pending the federal government’s approval of safety changes to the plane.

Calgary-based WestJet said Wednesday that the Max will resume service with three round-trip flights a week between Calgary and Toronto and will add more routes later.

The Max was grounded worldwide in March, 2019, after two fatal crashes in five months, in Indonesia and Ethiopia, killed a total of 346 people. After Boeing Co. made changes to the plane’s automated flight-control system, which had been linked to the disasters, the U.S. cleared the Max for service. Canada has yet to give final clearance to the changes and is requiring different cockpit procedures and training.

Story continues below advertisement

“As we continue working with Transport Canada on the additional Canadian requirements, our first Max will be ready to return safely to service as of January 21,” said Ed Sims, WestJet’s chief executive officer, in a statement. “While we don’t have final confirmation on when TC will open Canadian airspace to the 737 Max aircraft, in the interest of transparency we are sharing our intent to fly once this confirmation is received.”

WestJet has 13 of the aircraft, an updated version of the 737 that has been flying since the late 1960s and, before the fatalities, was Boeing’s bestseller. The Max is more fuel-efficient and has greater range than older models, which is why airlines are keen to resume flying the Max. However, they must assure customers the planes are safe.

WestJet said it wants to restore customer confidence in the planes and that travellers will know if they are scheduled to fly on one. “We will be forthcoming with our guests on where the Max aircraft are flying and we will be flexible with our change and cancel policy to ensure our guests can make their travel plans confidently,” Mr. Sims said.

The federal government has not said when the plane will receive approval to fly passengers again. Transport Minster Marc Garneau said in November that the review would conclude “soon.”

Your time is valuable. Have the Top Business Headlines newsletter conveniently delivered to your inbox in the morning or evening. Sign up today.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow the author of this article:

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error Editorial code of conduct
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies