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NEW ORLEANS – Air Transat, named the World’s Best Leisure Airline at the Skytrax World Airline Awards for a second straight year, had its inaugural direct flight from Montreal to New Orleans yesterday. It became the only airline to offer a direct flight between YUL Montréal-Trudeau International Airport and Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport. The route is available twice weekly, Thursdays and Sundays, year‑round.

To mark the first flight, the 157 passengers on flight TS998 were greeted at the Montreal airport before departure by Jean-François Lemay, President-General Manager of Air Transat, Joseph Adamo, Chief Distribution Officer of Transat, and Stéphane Lapierre, Vice President, Airport Operations and Air Services Development of Aéroports de Montréal.

“We’re thrilled by our arrival in the Louisiana market and, especially, to be the only airline that provides Quebec travellers with easy access to a city we feel a kinship with, given its French heritage,” says Jean-François Lemay. “We’re also giving our passengers another great vacation option by adding a city famous for its nightlife, music and cuisine.”

“We’re delighted to welcome this first-ever direct link to New Orleans from Montreal,” says Stephane Lapierre, “With this new route, YUL is again increasing the choice of destinations leaving from Montreal and, thanks to our partner Air Transat, travellers will have the opportunity to discover a vibrant destination famous for its exceptional music.”

In New Orleans, Kevin Dolliole, Director of Aviation for Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport, was on hand to welcome the passengers on the first flight in the company of Betsy Barnes, Director of Public Affairs, Office of Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser, Don Pierson, Secretary of Louisiana Economic Development, Walt Leger, Senior Vice President of Strategic Affairs and General Counsel, New Orleans & Co. and Michael Hecht, President & CEO, GNO, Inc. Accompanied by Jean-François Lemay and Joseph Adamo, the travellers from Montreal were delighted to land in Louisiana. There were also festivities to mark the first flight from New Orleans to Montreal, set for the same day.

“We’re thrilled to welcome Air Transat as our newest international airline to MSY,” says Kevin Dolliole. “We’re also excited about the timing of this inaugural fight as we prepare to open the new MSY Terminal on November 6. The new MSY will create a much greater experience for Montreal visitors and a much more efficient home for Air Transat, incorporating new technologies and state-of-the-art amenities.”

“Canada is our top international market and this new direct flight to Montreal will give us even more connection to our neighboring country to the north. We have a strong cultural connection to Montreal and the Quebec province and look forward to welcoming visitors from this area to experience our incredible food, music and culture,“ Stephen Perry, president and CEO, New Orleans & Company.

“We are thrilled to welcome yet another international flight to Greater New Orleans, with this new direct to Montreal from AirTransat,” said Michael Hecht, President & CEO of GNO, Inc. “New Orleans is the #7 fastest growing tech market in America, and Montreal is the #5 software city in the world – so the economic opportunity presented by this flight is very exciting. GNO, Inc. is proud to welcome AirTransat, and looks forward to continuing to partner to ensure the flight is a success.”

With this new flight to Montreal, Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport now has a total of 8 international destinations.

About Air Transat
Air Transat is Canada’s number one leisure airline. It flies to some 60 international destinations in more than 25 countries in the Americas and Europe, offers domestic and connecting flights within Canada, and carries some 5 million passengers every year. Air Transat is a business unit of Transat A.T. Inc., a leading integrated international tourism company specializing in holiday travel and offering vacation packages, hotel stays and air travel. Transat was awarded Travelife certification in 2018 in recognition of its commitment to sustainable development. Based in Montreal, it has 5,000 employees.

Recent distinctions and awards

  • Named World’s Best Leisure Airline at the Skytrax World Airline Awards
  • Voted Best Tour Operator and Favourite Overall Supplier at the Agents’ Choice Awards presented by Baxter Travel Media
  • Voted Best Airline and Best Tour Operator at the Trophées Uni-Vers awards organized by the Association des Agents de Voyages du Québec
  • Ranked among Canada’s Best Employers and first among airlines on Forbes magazine’s list