MIAMI — Toronto’s Porter Airlines has signed its first U.S. interline agreement, with JetBlue. JetBlue’s base at Boston-Logan International Airport will serve as the connecting point for the interline flights.

JetBlue offers 125 daily departures and 51 non-stop flights out of Logan, while Porter flies to Boston up to eight times daily from its home at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. “It is a natural partnership from Porter’s perspective,” said spokesman Brad Cicero. “Both airlines are highly regarded for their service models and the number of flight options it provides is significant.”

The routes were chosen based on all of the connecting possibilities at Boston, said Cicero, noting that it adds up to a great selection of North American routes. “Customers will be able to compare more flight options based on price and flight times, and choose what is best for their budget and schedule,” he said.

Passengers will be able to start travel on the interline flights on Nov. 3. Markets will be introduced based on the following schedule, subject to change:

  • October 7 – Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood and Orlando, Florida, Las Vegas and Los Angeles;
  • Week of October 15 – San Juan, Puerto Rico, San Francisco, Jacksonville, Florida, and Richmond, Virginia;
  • Week of October 22 – Phoenix, Charleston, South Carolina, Philadelphia and Tampa, Florida;
  • Week of October 29 – Up to 10 additional JetBlue continental U.S. markets via Boston;
  • November – Porter domestic Canada markets via Toronto City Airport, such as Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City and Sudbury; and
  • 2015 – International JetBlue markets via Boston, including Cancun, Mexico, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, St. Maarten and Grand Cayman.

Runway Proposal Pending

Meanwhile, Porter Airlines is still pushing to get a runway extension built at Billy Bishop Airport. The airline worked with LPS Avia Consulting to propose in September 2013 an extension of up to 200 metres into the water at each end of the main runway. But on April 1,  the Toronto City Council unanimously voted to further study Porter’s proposal for Bishop Airport.

Under an agreement that governs the airport, jet aircraft are prohibited from operating at the airport in order to prevent noisy planes from landing on the waterfront. But Porter Airlines argues that significant advancements in jet aircraft technology make them as quiet as the Bombardier Q400 turboprops it currently flies.

Porter Airlines Q400 Aircraft at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. (Credits: Porter Airlines Inc.)
Porter Airlines Q400 Aircraft at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. (Credits: Porter Airlines Inc.)

The runway extension, along with the request for a waiver from a jet ban at Bishop airport, are needed in order for the carrier to move ahead with its order of 12 Bombardier CSeries100 jets, with options for another 18. Delivery of the aircraft are scheduled to start in 2016 if the changes are enacted.

“This proposal is being studied further by the Toronto Port Authority and City of Toronto to provide more information about certain topics,” said Cicero. “The information will be available for city council next year and we’re optimistic that a decision can be made in the spring.”