A pilot taxis a Westjet Boeing 737-700 plane to a gate after arriving at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C., on Feb. 3. WestJet Airlines is taking steps to expand its regional service and add wide-body planes to its fleet. —Canadian Press file photo
CALGARY - WestJet Airlines Ltd. (TSX:WJA) says it plans to launch a new cheap airline later this year.
The Calgary-based company says it will start with 10 Boeing 737-800 aircraft in its initial fleet and offer no-frills, lower-cost flights.
WestJet says the new yet-to-be-named airline carrier is subject to agreement with its pilots and any required regulatory approvals.
Co-founder and chairman Clive Beddoe says the so-called ultra-low-cost carrier will broaden the company's growth opportunities as it goes after the price-sensitive end of the market.
WestJet started in 1996 as a discount carrier with three aircraft serving five destinations in Western Canada.
The airline, together with regional carrier WestJet Encore, now offers scheduled flights to more than 100 destinations in North America, Central America, the Caribbean and Europe.
MORE TO COME