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May 12, 2020

WestJet cancels most flights until July due to COVID-19 pandemic

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft

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CALGARY -- WestJet Airlines Ltd. is extending its suspension of thousands of flights by another four weeks until July 4 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Calgary-based carrier is halting all U.S. and international flights, as well as more than 40 domestic routes as travel controls and public health concerns continue to choke off demand.

The latest round of schedule scrubbing follows WestJet's announcement on April 22 to suspend some 18,000 flights between May 5 and June 4 amid record-low passenger numbers.

Air Canada cancelled all flights to the United States late last month after Ottawa extended its U.S. border closure by 30 days, with most international flights also halted and seat capacity down more than 90 per cent.

Air Transat, Porter Airlines and Sunwing Airlines Ltd. have cancelled all trips until late June.

The International Air Transport Association predicts global revenues will fall by US$314 billion this year, or 55 per cent, from 2019.