The NetLetter #964
Since Oct/95 March 4, 2007


Number 964

About us!

TCA's and Air Canada's 70th Annversary!

Nice to Know...

Remember when

Star Alliance News

T.C.A. and forgotten airports

Found on the Internet

Terry's Travel Tips


AC Heritage Poster



NetLetter Archives

About us!

Since October 1995, Vesta Stevenson and Terry Baker have been issuing an email newsletter for those ex Air Canada types who have provided us with their email addresses. The Newsletter was created by Vesta, who gave the name 'NetLetter' and added 'Between Ourselves' - a TCA periodical with which you are probably familiar with from the 50's and 60's. It was then changed to "Between Yourselves" to avoid confusion when "Horizons" resurrected the name. Then finally simplified to just "The NetLetter".

We believe that our NetLetter, which originates from Vancouver Island, was the FIRST to use this medium to disperse information for retirees of Air Canada.

The NetLetter contains airline related information such as anecdotes or stories supplied by some of the recipients, Internet tips, travel news, cheap... excuse me, "inexpensive" accommodations, tours, interline travel, and, in some small way, we help keep our Air Canada family together and in touch.

Our 'NetLetter' is NOT sponsored by any Pionair group, nor are we seeking any financial support, only the Internet email addresses of those who would like to receive our 'NetLetter'. Please forward this to other retirees who can then subscribe right from the forwarded link at the bottom of this email.


ACFamily Network



Air Canada Heritage Poster


Dear NetLetter,

Welcome to the 964th issue of "NetLetter". The NetLetter is the longest running newsletter (since 1995) that is dedicated to Air Canada retirees.

We now estimate that the NetLetter is read by over 2748 retirees when counting our email distribution and those that print the NetLetter and give them out to their friends. The "NetLetter" is written by Vesta Stevenson and Terry Baker from Vancouver Island (see sidebar) and also with articles and comments from "you" our readers. Formatting of text, photos, etc. for this HTML version is done by Webmaster Alan Rust and is published courtesy of the ACFamily Network at www.acfamily.net

  • TCA's and Air Canada's 70th Annversary!
  • The 70th anniversary of Air Canada nee Trans-Canada Air Lines.

    On March 4th., 1937, the Rt. Hon. C.D.Howe, as Minister of Transport, gave notice of a resolution to establish a national airline, and the Trans-Canada Air Lines Act was put before the House.

    Trans-Canada Air Lines was incorporated April 10th., 1937. Little wonder that C.D.Howe became known as the Father of T.C.A..

    The first flight for T.C.A. took place on September 1st., 1937 from Vancouver Sea Island Airport to Seattle, just 122 miles south.

    The star of the occasion was a Lockheed L10A registered CF-AZY piloted by Billy Wells and Maurice McGregor. This first flight took 50 minutes with, as passengers, several dignitaries. The first of two scheduled daily flights.

    Later this route was relinquished to allow for a concentration on the domestic air services. On November 1st., 1946, when Canadian Pacific Airlines withdrew their service to Victoria, T.C.A. took over the operation with DC-3 equipment, offering 8 flights a day, with two onward to serve Seattle.

    The fleet consisted of two Lockheed L10A and one Stearman bi-plane. The work force just 71 employees.

    The public was informed that the taxi fare from downtown Vancouver to the airport was 75 cents for the 25-minute ride, and the same for the taxi fare from Seattle to downtown. Today the same taxi ride from YVR to Downtown is $40.

    Each passenger was allowed 35 pounds of baggage free and excess would cost 4 cents a pound with 25 cents minimum.

    On April 1st., 1939, simultaneous trans continental flights took off from Vancouver and Montreal, each bound for the other city.

    On April 16th., 1941, the airline become a sea to sea operation with the inauguration of service to Halifax.

    Note: The photo on the left with Terry and Vesta is an L10A similar to the one used on the first flight as described above.
  • Nice to Know...
  • Vesta

    New Boeing 777 to fly on key Europe, Asia and South Pacific routes; Introduction of only non-stop service between Canada and Australia.

    Air Canada will operate their first new Boeing 777 aircraft on key routes serving Europe, Asia and the South Pacific.

    Toronto-London Heathrow (beginning in April),
    Toronto-Frankfurt and Toronto-Tokyo (beginning in June),
    Vancouver-Tokyo (beginning in July) and Toronto-Hong Kong (beginning in August).

    Effective December 14, 2007, a new daily non-stop service between Vancouver and Sydney, Australia using our new 777 aircraft., becoming the only airline offering non-stop service between Canada and Australia. This flight provides a timesavings of almost three hours in each direction and avoids the inconvenience of customs and immigration procedures in Honolulu.


    Iris scans to launch at Calgary airport this summer

    System now up and running in Toronto.
    With an eye to speeding up travel between Canada and the U.S., a system of iris-recognition technology will soon take off at Calgary International Airport that allows travellers to bypass long waits in customs inspection lines.

    The Nexus program, launched February 12th., at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, allows member jetsetters to jump the border-crossing queue by using automated self-serve kiosks that scan their eyes for security clearance.

    The system will arrive in Calgary sometime this summer, said Lisa White of the Canada Border Services Agency.

    “The Nexus card is the alternative document to a passport for low-risk, pre-approved travellers to the U.S.,” she said.

    The enrollment process, which costs $50 US and takes four to six weeks, requires applicants to pass risk assessments in both countries.

    Upon approval, applicants’ eyes are photographed by a digital camera and kept on file for automated comparison scans.

    Nexus cards, which are valid for five years, also allow members to pay duties and taxes at the kiosks with a credit card.

    “You just do your customs declaration at the kiosk, much like an ATM,” said White, adding the process does not exempt travellers from secondary searches.

    An enrolment center will open at Calgary International Airport this summer, with the program also set to be implemented in Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa, Montreal and Halifax.

    A statement released yesterday by the federal department of Public Safety said plans are underway to expand Nexus to include land and sea travel.

    More info on iris scans

    (Your co-pilot enrolled at LHR last summer - free of charge! - eds)


    Privacy rules: Bare-all X-ray machine dumped The virtual strip search is not happening. Air travellers need not fear the ‘bare-all’ X-ray body scanner at the Indira Gandhi International Airport anymore.

    The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), which is in charge of airport security, has decided not to use the backscatter X-ray machine — that produces almost-naked images of passengers to reveal hidden weapons or explosives — due to ethical and technical reasons.

    A few international airports like London’s Heathrow and Phoenix Sky Harbor International in the US used the backscatter machine in the aftermath of 9/11, drawing criticism and concern from civil-liberty groups over privacy abuse.

    (There goes one of the perks for working in airport security - eds)
  • Remember when
  • In 1946 Trans-Canada Air Lines flights to London England left Montreal daily at 11:30 am(est). - Flying time approximately 16 hours.

    The London ticket office was at Cockspur Street near Trafalgar Square.

    The airfare at that time was ca$375 one way and ca$675 return.

    On September 16th., 1946, saw the inauguration of the Lakehead (Port Arthur-Fort William) to Duluth service. One round flight per day utilizing the Lockheed L14-08 aircraft for the 176 mile segment..
    The crew assignment was Captain Bill Loftus, F/O Harry Tindle and stewardess Mary Ann Charbonneau.


    Fares fair!
    Some of the fares charged by T.C.A. in past years one way YUL-YVR
    1938 $145.00
    1954 $145.00
    1961 $110.00
    1971 $145.00
    1974 $136.00
    1974 $142.00
    1976 $183.00
    1977 $206.00 but it was possible to find $119.00
    2007 $222.00
  • Star Alliance News
  • Star Alliance

    The Boeing Company said that Air New Zealand has finalized an order for four additional 787-9s, following on from the airline's announcement in December that it would be placing an order. This is the airline's third order for the popular 787 Dreamliner. With today's announcement, Air New Zealand has ordered a total of eight 787-9 Dreamliners

  • T.C.A. and forgotten airports
  • This is the final airport that George Brien has sent us -

    Shearwater YAW (an acronym for You Are Welcome)

    This was a Naval Air Station local just across the harbour in Dartmouth(Eastern Passage) and TCA began service in 1941. Uniquely, ground transportation from downtown Halifax included a car ferry ride across the harbour to Dartmouth.

    As with many military airports, the Airline terminal was attached to one of the hangers and the DC3’s could be rolled into the hanger overnight and be nice and dry in the AM.

    I spent a month at YAW in 1954 for Operations Agent training, and posting to Greenwood YZX

    As YAW was so near the ocean, fog, especially in the evenings and early mornings during the summer, was a real problem. So many flights were being diverted into CFB Greenwood that 1954 based a permanent ground staff based there to handle them. This setup continued until the new airport was opened.

    Eventually, a new airport was built at Kelly Lake, east of the city and on July 1st 1960, TCA moved their operations out to YHZ

    Hopefully, some TCA retirees can add some further details about the above and any other airports.


    We had several answers to the question put in NetLetter nr 963, and we thank you for your responses.

    This one we thought we would send along -
    Subject: Trois-Rivieres
    From: "J.R. Haran" <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
    I too flew that notorious run and the politician was, if I remember correctly, Léon Balcer the Minister of Transport in John Diefenbaker's cabinet at the time.

    When flying the route I delighted in reporting my position as "Abeam St=Stanislas-de-la-Riviere-des Envies." This would lead the controllers to look up a map of the area to see if such a place existed. It did.

    For the benefit of those from the ROC if you tell a French-Canadian that "J'ai des envies" you will be hurriedly directed to the nearest unoccupied toilet bowl. The Quebec government tried at one time to change the name to a seemlier one but the locals strongly objected and, as far as I am aware, still proudly use it.

    Sonny Haran

    (Subject closed - we appreciate the responses - eds)
  • Found on the Internet
  • OLDER PILOTS PERFORM BETTER, STUDY FINDS - Researchers studying the impact of aging on performance found that older pilots performed better over time than younger pilots. The results show that expert knowledge may offset the impact of old age.
    Full Story

    (We are not quite sure what the subject is here, but thought we would pass the information along! - eds)

  • Terry's Travel Tips
  • Brian Walsh sends us this web site -

    Here is a site that gives advice on how to pack bags more effectively.

    Cheers... Brian Walsh This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

  • Smiley
  • Smiley

    Heard at Gainesville, Florida Airport:
    Cessna: Gainesville tower, Cessna Three Four Five, seven west with Tango.
    Tower: Cessna One Two Three Four Five, cleared to land Runway six.
    Cessna: We'd prefer Runway one zero, we have some passengers to drop off at the terminal.
    Tower: Cessna Three Four Five, you can't do that, you have to use the general aviation FBO.
    Cessna: We called ahead and they said we could drop them off as long as we stayed clear of the gate.
    I don't know who told you that, but I'll ask the airport manager.
    Tower (a short time later): Cessna Three Four Five. I'm sorry, but you can't taxi to the terminal. However, if you'd like I can clear you for a low approach, and your passengers can jump out as you fly by.
    Cessna: (Laughs) How about I just use Runway six?

  • AC Heritage Poster
  • Enjoy this visual display of Air Canada’s historic fleet from its beginning in 1937 to the present including aircraft from:
    - Trans-Canada Air Lines
    - Canadian Airlines
    - Pacific Western
    - Eastern Provincial
    - Nordair
    - Transair
    - Wardair

    This 68 x 96 cm (27 x 38 inch) poster is printed in full colour on high quality paper and depicts over 300 aircraft and liveries flown by Air Canada throughout its history.

    The cost of the poster is $24.99 plus tax and shipping where applicable. This is a great gift for Christmas, reunions, retirements and birthday gifts, etc.

    A donation is made to Dreams Take Flight for each poster that is sold. Any other profits support the operation of the ACFamily Network which brings you this newsletter.

    More info here
  • Sponsors
  • The hosting and mailing of the NetLetter as well as the conversion to HTML format is provided compliments of the ACFamily Network and Nerds On Site. Content is researched and submitted by Vesta Stevenson and Terry Baker. Thank you for letting us into your homes!

    Please support the ACFamily Network
  • Submissions
  • Important reminder, for all new articles, submissions and or comments for the "The Netletter" please send to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (Please add to your Address Books).

    This e-mail address has been set up so that both of us Terry & Vesta (exclusively) will get an automatic copy and so we can keep up with the continuity of news for the NetLetter.

    To make changes to your e-mail address or to unsubscribe, please see the links at the bottom of the page for "Update Profile/Email address" and SafeUnsubscribe. This is now automated so that you can remove yourself from the list or change your email address (or name) without our assistance. We will still do this manually if you have any difficulties.

    Many of our members are having difficulty finding these links. You will need to scroll to the bottom of the page, the link is similar to the following image. (The image below doesn't work but your links at the bottom will).

    Vesta, Terry and Alan thank you for your co- operation.

  • NetLetter Archives
  • The archives of the NetLetter are kept on the ACFamily Network Forums area. They are in plain text format so you can print them from there if desired. If you are not a member of the ACFamily Network yet, we encourage you to join us there. Non members can Register here. (It's Free!)

    NetLetter Archives Link
    email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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