Air Inuit reaps praise at AGM

By NUNATSIAQ NEWS

With 120 flights criss-crossing Nunavik every day, Air Inuit, the regional airline owned by Makivik Corp., provides a service that many in Nunavut would envy.

On a single day during Makivik’s recent annual general meeting in Kangirsuk, Air Inuit managed to transport hockey players from the community to regional tournaments, package up Ivakkak dog teams, their owners and katomiks back to Puvirnituq, find a Twin Otter for a medevac and ship home delegates and visitors from the AGM — and all this in deteriorating weather conditions.

At the AGM, George Berthe, Makivik’s corporate secretary and the head of Air Inuit, gave a run-down of what Air Inuit offers Nunavimmiut, which includes:

* trilingual reservation service;
* Web booking at www.airinuit.com;
* compassionate discounts;
* a free trip for honeymooners;
* two annual discounts for round-trip tickets, which are issued to beneficiaries and provide large reductions when combined with a Quebec government rebate for airline travel;
* conference discounts;
* recreational discounts;
* reduced rates to ship country food;
* inter-community weekend specials.

“We have to revere Air Inuit because it’s very supportive of our language, our culture, our way of life,” said Charlie Arngak.

Delegates from Chisasibi said they want Air Inuit to stop in their mainly Cree community on the James Bay. Delegates from Puvirnituq said they are still lobbying for Air Inuit to provide jet service to Puvirnituq.

Air Inuit, which flies Dash-8s, 748s and a handful of Twin Otters and smaller aircraft, does not currently own or operate any jets.

Air Inuit’s report to the meeting noted the airline is becoming “very strict about the intoxicated passengers.”

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