Whitehorse Daily Star

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Photo by Whitehorse Star

AIR NORTH HONOURED – Joe Sparling, Air North’s president and CEO, is seen in June 2016 at the Air North hangar.

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Photo by Whitehorse Star

AIRLINE EARNS KUDOS – An Air North jet is backdropped by the moon over Whitehorse in November 2016.

Air North named best airline by Tripadvisor

Tripadvisor has named Air North the Travellers’ Choice Best Airline in Canada 2020, as well as the Travellers’ Choice Specialty Airline in North America 2020.

By Whitehorse Star on July 30, 2020

Tripadvisor has named Air North the Travellers’ Choice Best Airline in Canada 2020, as well as the Travellers’ Choice Specialty Airline in North America 2020.

The awards are given based on positive Tripadvisor reviews the company received throughout 2019.

Award winners are known for consistently receiving great flyer feedback, placing them among travellers’ favourites around the globe.

This is the first time Air North has been awarded Travellers’ Choice Best Airline in Canada, and the second year in a row it has been awarded Travellers’ Choice Specialty Airline in North America.

“We are honoured to receive these awards, proud of our great team for earning them, and thankful to our loyal Yukoners and travellers from around the world for recognizing our product and taking their time to provide a review to Tripadvisor,” Joe Sparling, Air North’s president and CEO, said Tuesday.

“I am especially pleased to see these awards go to a northern air carrier, as it provides a great illustration of the role they play in the North, not only providing essential air services, but also strengthening the northern economy through Indigenous and non-Indigenous employment and investment.”

“Winners of the 2020 Travellers’ Choice Awards should be proud of this distinguished recognition,” said Kanika Soni, the chief commercial officer at Tripadvisor.

“Although it’s been a challenging year for travel and hospitality, we want to celebrate our partners’ achievements,” Soni added.

“Award winners are beloved for their exceptional service and quality. Not only are these winners well deserving, they are also a great source of inspiration for travellers as the world begins to venture out again.”

On Monday, the company announced the Air North Care First program, which focuses on putting the care of their passengers, communities and staff first by implementing additional health and safety measures.

As part of this commitment, Air North is not selling middle seats on its Boeing 737 jets, except to passengers of the same social bubble, to facilitate physical distancing onboard.

Founded in 1977, Air North is 100-per-cent northern-owned with more than 2,000 Yukon shareholders, including the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation who hold a 49-per-cent interest.

From the Whitehorse base, travellers can fly to 13 Canadian destinations, including Dawson City, Old Crow, Inuvik, Mayo, Watson Lake, Vancouver, Kelowna, Victoria, Edmonton, Calgary, Yellowknife, and Ottawa.

Its fleet is comprised of five Boeing 737 jets, and three ATR-42 turboprops.

Comments (21)

Up 2 Down 0

DA on Aug 4, 2020 at 9:47 am

There are many reasons to love Air North. I've always appreciated their investment in the community.

Up 2 Down 0

Jan Brandjes on Aug 3, 2020 at 6:59 pm

Greetings from a (locked down) Melbourne, Australia, and congratulations to Joe Sparling and Air North for being recognised. I had the pleasure of flying Vancouver -Whitehorse return some years ago and the service was great! In the 1980's I had the pleasure of working with Joe's mom, Goody Sparling. If Joe is half as kind to his staff, as Goody was, he'd be a great boss to work for.

Up 2 Down 0

Ryan on Aug 3, 2020 at 5:20 pm

What's with all the thumbs down on positive comments on cookies, great customer service and the airline's ability to fly in most of the weather that the Yukon can throw at it?

Air North's legacy is as great as the service they provide. I guess you can't please them all, right?

Up 18 Down 3

Air Canada zero on Aug 2, 2020 at 8:37 pm

Must concur with the majority opinion. Air Canada had neither the skill-set nor the wherewithal to land at Whitehorse last November whilst Air North were routinely doing so. Wind direction and a dusting of snow were enough to send the flight back to Vancouver. Truly pathetic .

Up 29 Down 3

Rachel on Aug 2, 2020 at 2:51 am

Will only fly Air North out of the Yukon and the fact that Air North is the only airlines that can handle and fly in winter conditions and not be grounded speaks volumes on how remarkable this airline really is. Not to mention my kids and I look forward to that cookie every flight, not only that we order the food off their menu for delivery. It's always on time and we just pop the meals in the oven and enjoy 45/50 minutes later. You rock Air North

Up 28 Down 2

DMZ on Aug 1, 2020 at 11:18 pm

@Yukoner '71, We should at least name a mountain after Joe Sparling.

I love Air North, it's such a great way to start and finish a trip. Though I don't find Air Canada such a trial to deal with as some people. But Air North does a little extra that keeps you motivated. They have a brilliant strategy.

Up 27 Down 2

Groucho d'North on Aug 1, 2020 at 2:48 pm

The net result of the correct mixture of vision, hard work, smarts, outstanding team building and dedication to quality customer service. Well done Joe, Deb and the rest of your remarkable team.

Up 26 Down 1

Ian on Aug 1, 2020 at 2:16 pm

Air North, Mr Sparling and crew.
Was a pleasure working for you and Ace, then working with you for years via radio and phone, to now reaping the rewards of owning a few shares in your winning airline.
Congratulations Joe and all your crews.
Ian L

Up 30 Down 3

Michael T on Aug 1, 2020 at 2:45 am

Congratulations. It’s too bad that so much of Canada is unable to enjoy the benefits of flying with your crew.

Up 38 Down 4

Marshall on Jul 31, 2020 at 4:09 pm

A hearty congratulations to Mr. Joseph Sparling and Ace both...I got my pilots licence from their flight school in 1979 and it has served me well over the years. oe Sparling is one of those persons that punches way above his weight class.

Up 39 Down 8

Anie on Jul 31, 2020 at 3:42 pm

Well deserved. Now if we could get gov't to support Air North by insisting that their employees cannot accumulate the competition's air miles while flying on our dime. Gov Yukon and City if Whitehorse have not been supportive of Air North, and don't get me started about those Feds.

Up 40 Down 3

Mollie Roy on Jul 31, 2020 at 1:20 pm

Best airline ever. Five gold stars for them.

Up 37 Down 2

Penelope Wall on Jul 31, 2020 at 1:15 pm

You are the best!

Up 43 Down 3

Expat on Jul 31, 2020 at 1:11 pm

The flying world would be a much better place if the others airlines went to Air North and said show us how it's done.

Up 61 Down 5

Yukon Cornelius on Jul 31, 2020 at 9:45 am

It's the cookie - the best dang oven-fresh, sticky, gooey Toll House cookie you've ever tasted at 37,000 feet! Well that, and unlike Air Canada who must keep their staff in cages and poke them with sticks just prior to boarding, Air North's staff are cordial and extremely accommodating. Air North is run by people who know how to run a business. Congratulations!

Up 44 Down 8

Yukoner ‘71 on Jul 31, 2020 at 9:42 am

Face it, when it comes to airlines there’s Air North and then there’s everyone else. We should change the territories name from Yukon to Sparling (just kidding).

Up 50 Down 2

Mmm cheese on Jul 30, 2020 at 11:44 pm

Air North has ruined us for all other airlines. From the delicious food to the Atlas flight staff. You guys rock!

Up 45 Down 2

comen sense on Jul 30, 2020 at 10:47 pm

I have flown around the globe with other good-hearted airlines but nothing comes close to service that Air North provides. We are all lucky to have them here in the territory. I had the chance to have worked with them off and on close to the beginning with the DC-3 / and Hawkers - great experience. Herb

Up 69 Down 4

Tater on Jul 30, 2020 at 3:39 pm

Congratulations Air North! We have known this for years!

Up 16 Down 48

Air Crash Investigator on Jul 30, 2020 at 2:52 pm

VG hold a 49% stake ! Just imagine if they got 2% more . Doesn’t bear thinking about !

Up 53 Down 10

Dave on Jul 30, 2020 at 1:55 pm

Air North winning these awards is well deserved and comes as no surprise at all, however on the other hand the other Canadian airlines don’t set a very high bar to exceed. Flying Air North is enjoyable while with the major airlines I’m like oh no I have no choice but to subject myself to them again. I haven’t flown during Covid but I imagine the experience on our national airlines is even more of an overwhelming joy than usual. Flying Air Canada you could swear their motto is, ‘We’re not happy until you’re not happy’, and they use penguins in their commercials because that’s how small you have to be to fit in their economy seats.

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