Québec-based Chrono Aviation has added a Boeing 737-800SF to its fleet, a dedicated 52,000 lb cargo freighter with a range of 2,200 nm and the first such aircraft to be operated in Canada. This also marks the company's first presence in western Canada, with the new aircraft to be based in Winnipeg, and will see the creation of 20 jobs.
“It is currently one of the most popular airframes in conversion in the world, due to its flexibility, reliability and operational cost,” says president and chief pilot Vincent Gagnon.
Not only can the Boeing 737-800SF carry more cargo further and faster, it is also more environmentally friendly, with 20 per cent less emissions per tonne of cargo carried compared to previous generations of Boeing cargo aircraft.
“With this next generation aircraft, we will be able to respond to a whole new market that is experiencing phenomenal growth," Gagnon adds. "We are making our entrance into the international air cargo industry with the acquisition of this new Boeing cargo aircraft. It is with the continued objective of innovating and conquering new markets that Chrono Aviation, one of Quebec's largest air carriers, is once again setting itself apart by becoming the first in Canada to introduce a Boeing 737-800SF."
He continues: "With this aircraft, we will be able to transport any cargo to about any destination, in Canada and around the world. Adding the 800SF was part of our growth strategy, but increased demand in the international market and from some of our current customers has advanced our long-term expectations."
The company has been busy with ad hoc cargo flights due to COVID, over and above those it performs to Iqaluit, the capital city of the Nunavut territory on Baffin Island. Indeed, another legacy of the pandemic is a lot of added procedures and expense. “It is very expensive for the operator and the end client,” says Gagnon. “It became very difficult to manage crews, the demand and the necessary isolations. Our hangar construction project was impacted and all the financing around aviation became extremely difficult.”
The company acquired a charter Boeing 737-800 back in April 2021 and Gagnon expects this too to enter service in 2022, towards the back end of the year.