Canada's Starlink to launch Nova Scotia-Maine service

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Canadian business aircraft operator Starlink Aviation is preparing to launch scheduled passenger services to Portland, Maine from Halifax and Yarmouth in Nova Scotia using BAe Jetstream 31 turboprops.

Starlink, which now mainly operates charters using a fleet of 15 turboprops and business jets, today received US DOT authorisation to launch two scheduled return flights every weekday on a Halifax-Yarmouth-Portland routing. The Montreal-based carrier in January received a license from Canadian authorities permitting it to launch international scheduled services to Portland.

A Starlink reservation agent says the carrier has not yet set a launch date but it will begin operating the service "sometime soon".

According to Innovata, there is currently no scheduled service between Portland and any city in Canada.

"The proposed service is in the public interest because there is currently no scheduled service between Portland, Maine and Nova Scotia, Canada. A previous Canadian carrier dropped this service years ago and it has not been re-established by any other carrier to date despite the numerous and important economic ties between the two areas," Starlink told the DOT in its initial application.

It added the new service "is supported by the Portland airport".

Starlink currently only operates one scheduled route, linking its Montreal base with Bagotville and Alma in Quebec. This corporate shuttle service is operated 11 times per week with Jetstream 31s on a Montreal-Bagotville-Alma routing.

The carrier says in its application to the DOT that it currently owns five 18-seat Jetstream 31s.

Most of Starlink's operation consists of on-demand charter flights using Jetstream 31s, Beechcraft King Air turboprops as well Falcon, Hawker and Lear business jets. It already operates air taxi charter flights to destinations in the US.

At its base at Montreal's Pierre-Elliot Trudeau Airport, Starlink also has a fixed based operation (FBO) and a maintenance centre catering to business aircraft.