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Kayla Goodfield

Senior Digital Producer


WestJet Airlines Ltd. has announced a further extension to its service cutbacks as the Omicron variant of COVID-19 continues to hinder the travel industry.

In a news release issued on Monday, the Calgary-based carrier said it is extending its scaled-back schedule through to March 31.

The airline’s service was originally reduced about 15 per cent in December. Then, in January, the carrier announced it was cutting service 20 per cent until the end of February.

“Travel advisories, restrictions and testing requirements were meant to be temporary, yet our industry has now reached an impasse that is severely impacting the recovery of our airline and sector,” said Harry Taylor, interim president and CEO of WestJet, in the release.

Taylor added that it is “disappointing that Canada remains stagnant in its approach and continues to make travel inaccessible and punitive for Canadians and inbound tourists.”

“Canada remains the only country among the G7 nations to still require mandatory pre-departure and on-arrival PCR testing. Countries across the globe are recognizing the importance of travel and tourism on economic recovery and we are witnessing them take measures to safely re-open their borders and make sensible adjustments to overall travel guidance and testing requirements.”