View Full Version : Boeing 727 - Why so popular in Canada?

25th May 2006, 18:39
Amazed at the number of 727's in service in Canada.

Kelowna Flightcraft (opf Purolator)
Morningstar Express (opf Fedex)
Flair Airlines
Cargojet Airways
First Air

Any reasons why the 727 makes for such a good aircraft to operate in Canada, keeping in mind the operating costs ?

26th May 2006, 13:12
It's not that many aircraft in fact. They are now very cheap to buy (although fuel costs per kg. hauled must now be high), but basically the market is obviously smaller in Canada than in the US, where the major package/freight companies have moved on to large fleets of widebodies, and in some cases 757s.

In fact if you want something smaller than a 757 there is not a lot of choice. The 737 doesn't seem to hack it for freight work, there have been relatively few conversions, and none from the MD-80 or A320, which all seem to go for scrap when the passenger airlines are finished with them. I guess the extra engine comes in handy for the higher gross weights cargo operators tend to go for.

Note these are freight aircraft. Canadian passenger airlines came late to the 727, Air Canada preferring the DC-9 only for some years (another example of wanting the smaller aircraft) and CP/Canadian followed a similar course.

26th May 2006, 16:33
Do the Canadian operators use them on transatlantic flights?

UPS do and they must save some money on those routes over 757/767/A300s etc.

26th May 2006, 17:46
Most commonly inside Canada with Hamilton being a base for Purolator and Cargojet airways. Flair airlines does the cargo trips between Toronto and Cuba and recently started passenger charters. First Air does also cargo flights to Europe on rare occasions (Netherlands).

27th May 2006, 01:21
According to Wikipedia, FedEx had 109 727s in early 2006. I'd presume that at least some are the re-engined ones with more-efficient side engines.

Look at http://flightaware.com/live/ in the wee hours of the morning - pick "random flight" and you are likely to see a FedEx 727 flight.

27th May 2006, 01:58
WardAir used to operate 727's YVR-HNL in the mid-70's, before going widebody. GREAT airline for the pax.

27th May 2006, 10:19
Actually, I recently compared the 727-100 block hour costs with a 737-300 on a 1300nm route. The 727 burns more fuel per hour, but takes less time to cover the distance. This also means less engine hours, lower maintenance cost, less crew hours and overall, a lower block hour cost than with a 733.

Knock out the F/E position and they're even more competative. Long live the 727 :D

27th May 2006, 15:12
WardAir used to operate 727's YVR-HNL in the mid-70's, before going widebody. GREAT airline for the pax.Actually that was the first transatlantic trip I ever made, summer 1968. Their sole 727, reg CF-FUN, operated a charter London Gatwick - Sondrestrom (Greenland) as a fuel stop - Vancouver, which allowed me to visit Greenland for the one and only time (and on the return). I believe in previous years Wardair had done the same route with DC-6Bs, and that (as described above) they operated from Vancouver to warm-weather resorts in the winter.

One thing I always wondered about afterwards was the sheer logistics of getting aircraft fuel to Sondrestrom.

To get back on topic, this must have been the first ever Canadian 727. I hope they didn't have all the admin trouble with certification that Dan-Air in Britain did some years later when they became the first UK operator of the type.

Gordon Fraser
28th May 2006, 21:51
I remember reading many years ago that Air Canada acquired their fleet of B727s as a result of a superb selling job by Boeing in the early seventies. If my memory serves me correctly, Boeing sales did an in depth analysis of Air Canada’s route network, airports used, passenger levels and aircraft fleet. They then approached Air Canada with a recommended purchase of a certain amount of B727 that were, in their opinion, required immediately. I believe that AC disagreed with Boeing only in the number of aircraft required and, in fact, ordered more. Air Canada did order their fleet later than many other carriers.

30th May 2006, 19:48
I seem to recall that, as part of the original A320 sale to Air Canada, Airbus brokered the sale of Air Canada's entire fleet of 727s to FedEx.

1st Jun 2006, 08:39
Still poular as exec aircraft. there is always one at SEN undergoing maintenance checks, VP-BAA left last week and there is another N727?? hangered at present undergoing a major.

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