Imagine stepping off your flight into a waiting Porsche and being whisked across the tarmac to the plush confines of an exclusive lounge with five-star dining.
That’s what some Air Canada business class travellers can now look forward to when arriving into Toronto-Pearson Airport, with Vancouver Airport soon to follow.
The Star Alliance airline will send a fleet of chauffeur-drive Porsche Taycan, Panamera and Cayenne EV and hybrid cars zipping across the tarmac as a “surprise and delight” perk, based on availability, for selected passengers on the Canadian flag-carrier’s international Signature Class business class flights from Asia, Europe and South America.
However, the Air Canada Chauffeur Service can’t be booked or even paid for – an airline spokeswoman tells Executive Traveller it is “just part of our ongoing plans to enhance our customer's journey with Air Canada. We believe it’s a terrific value-add for our premium customers to set us apart from the competition.”
Another part of that premium formula are the exclusive Signature Suite lounges, available only to the airline’s own business class passengers booked on a paid ticket.
(Everybody else – including top-tier frequent flyers and business class travellers on other Star Alliance airlines – is sent to Air Canada Maple Leaf lounge.)
Air Canada has now reopened its Signature Suite lounge at Toronto, and plans to unlock the doors of the Vancouver Signature Suite – with chauffeured Porsches at the ready – in the next two months.
A centrepiece of both lounges is the elegant restaurant, which more properly presents itself as a fine-dining establishment under the wing of feted Vancouver-born chef David Hawksworth, where high flyers can enjoy a three-course à la carte meal, accompanied by wine, Champagne or cocktails, before jetting off to a distant corner of the globe.
A Signature Suite lounge for Montreal is understood to still be several years way, pending extensions to Montreal’s international terminal.
Although the Porsche partnership is new, the Air Canada Chauffeur Service has existed since 2018, when a fleet of BMWs previously whisked high-flying passengers to the lounge.
Scott O’Leary, Vice President, Loyalty & Product at Air Canada, says: “As we continue to restart key international routes, we look forward to welcoming our customers at Toronto Pearson with this one-of-a-kind airport premium experience in Canada, in partnership with one of the world’s most iconic luxury car brands.”
Air Canada recently unveiled plans to ramp up its Sydney-Vancouver flights from a daily schedule as of May 1 to ten weekly return flights during the peak travel period of June 6 to September 5.
Additional reporting by David Flynn