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May 14, 2008 | General

EDMONTON–Capital Region officials including City of Edmonton Councillor Terry Cavanagh lead a three-day Trade Mission to Montreal Monday, capitalizing on the new daily non-stop service from Edmonton International Airport to Montreal-Dorval Airport launched in April.

The Edmonton / Montreal service was first announced on February 7, 2000 by Air Canada President Robert Milton as part of a nation-wide integration of route networks for both Air Canada and Canadian Airlines International. The Edmonton / Los Angeles non-stop service was announced the same day and also began service in April.

The schedule of the daily non-stop flight to Montreal is as follows:

· Canadian Airlines flight 952 (a 100 seat B737) leaves Edmonton International Airport daily at 11:50AM arriving at the Montreal-Dorval Airport at 5:45PM Eastern Time.

· Canadian Airlines flight 955 leaves Montreal-Dorval Airport at 8:30AM Eastern Time, arriving at Edmonton International Airport at 10:50AM Central Time.

Currently, the lowest round-trip ticket booked seven days in advance is listed at $440.00 including tax.

A 1998 survey of travel agencies in the Capital Region revealed that prior to the availability of daily non-stop service, an estimated 68,000 one-way trips were sold between Edmonton and Montreal that year. Prior to April 3, 2000 passengers were required to connect through Calgary, Ottawa or Toronto en route to Montreal.

Of the 68,000 one-way trips sold between the two cities in 1998, 64% consisted of Edmonton-area residents travelling to Montreal with visitors to the Capital Region accounting for the remaining 36%.

Also, an estimated 150 Edmonton-area companies export various products to Quebec, with Montreal being a key focus of that trade activity. The business-related benefits are especially important to companies such as Canadian National (CN) which is headquartered in Montreal and has a western operations center located in Edmonton.

Mr. Scott Clements, President and Chief Executive Officer of Edmonton Airports says “the addition of the Montreal non-stop service is a major customer service improvement, especially for the business traveler. This non-stop service dramatically enhances connectibility to Atlantic Canada including such destinations as St. John’s, Newfoundland, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island and Halifax, Nova Scotia”.

Enhancing business connections will be the focus of the three-day Trade Mission. Members include Edmonton Councillor Terry Cavanagh, City of Leduc Mayor George Rogers, Economic Development Edmonton President and CEO Jim Edwards, Edmonton Airports Board of Directors Chairman Sid Hanson, Director of Sponsorship for the 2001 World Championships in Athletics Mike Burton and Frank Saulnier of Le Chambre economique de l’Alberta among others.

One of the scheduled events for Trade Mission members is a meeting with Air Canada officials to discuss the potential of additional new routes for the Capital Region including European service.

Media outlets are invited to attend today’s Trade Mission departure to Montreal. Interview and photo opportunities will be available from approximately 11:00-11:30AM. Attending media are encourage to park in the parkade (passes will be provided) or along the departures Level ramp at the direction of Ground Transportation Representatives.