MIAMI – Today in Aviation, Ottowa-based Canadian low-cost, long-haul carrier Zoom Airlines (Z4) ceased operations in 2008.

Zoom was founded by Scottish brothers John and Hugh Boyle in May 2002. The airline launched operations with an Airbus A320 leased from Monarch Airlines (ZB) and a single Boeing 767-300ER.

In a hybrid Zoom/Monarch livery, C-GZUM is pictured landing at Ottowa Airport in April 2003 just prior to it being returned to the UK carrier. (Photo: John Davies (GFDL 1.2 http://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/fdl-1.2.html or GFDL 1.2 http://www.gnu.org/licenses/old-licenses/fdl-1.2.html), via Wikimedia Commons.)

Trans-Atlantic Operations


Initially, flights covered leisure destinations such as Barbados, Fort Lauderdale, and Jamaica. Transatlantic services to the UK and Europe included London Gatwick, Glasgow, Manchester, Cardiff and Belfast, as well as Paris and Rome.

Additional 767s were sourced as well as the smaller Boeing 757, after the A320 was returned to Monarch in April 2003.

In summer 2006, a UK subsidiary was established by brother John Boyle. A codeshare agreement with UK-based Flyglobespan (Y2) was also formed in November 2006. This saw Zoom metal operate Y2’s thrice-weekly service from Manchester to Toronto (YYZ). Z4’s flights to the UK were also available to book on the Flyglobespan website.

In total, Zoom operated would operate two 757-200s and three 767-300ERs pictured here. (Photo: Airways collection)

Financial Struggles


However, in early 2008 financial difficulties began to emerge. Increasing fuel prices, coupled with the global economic downturn created a perfect storm for the airline.

On August 27, one of the airlines Boeing 767s was held at Calgary International Airport (YCC) when the owner suddenly cancelled its lease agreement. The following day a Boeing 757 was held at Glasgow and Cardiff Airports after it was reported that the airline had failed to pay ATC charges.

This spelled the end for Zoom and shortly after it filed for administration canceling all flights.


Featured image: Zoom Airlines Boeing 767-300ER pictured landing at London Gatwick in April 2007. (Photo: Arpingstone, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)