Copa Airlines launches nonstop Toronto-Panama City service


Panamanian carrier Copa Airlines has begun four-times-a-week non-stop Toronto-Panama City service, and the company’s CFO is holding out the prospect of an expanded presence in Canadian skies.

Victor Vial said last week that “hopefully Toronto will get daily service” and also raised the possibility of Copa linking Ottawa and Montreal with Panama City.

The Toronto service marks the Canadian debut for fast-growing Copa, which in 1991 served 14 destinations and which had 44 planes in 2005, but now has 180 daily flights from Panama City and will end 2011 with 73 planes flying to 57 destinations throughout the Americas.

Vial said the airline will have “at least” 90 planes before the end of 2013.

“The growth that we’ve seen has been phenomenal.”

Copa has been ordering B737-800s, which the airline reports offer more space for carry-on luggage and greater fuel efficiency.

Panamanian authorities also predict that this first scheduled service between Canada and Panama will lead to more Canadians choosing Panama for their vacations.