Scheduled flights between Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit to begin this month

Igloolik’s Arctic Fresh and Quebec-based Panorama Fixed Wing will operate flights on a trial basis

The Government of Nunavut has awarded a new air travel contract to an Igloolik-based company, which will start operating flights between Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit later this month. (File photo)

By Sarah Rogers

Flights between Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit will begin on a trial basis later this month, provided by an Igloolik-based company.

The Government of Nunavut put out a request for proposals for the air travel contract this spring.

It awarded that contract to Igloolik-based Arctic Fresh Projects Inc., which specialize in online food sales, but also construction, renovation and aviation consulting. The company is run by CEO Rhoda Angutimarik and her husband Merlyn Recinos, who is also the mayor of Igloolik.

Arctic Fresh will deliver the contract in partnership with the Alma, Que.-based airline Panorama Fixed Wing Ltd.

Arctic Fresh and Panorama beat out four other competitors for the bid: Bradley Air Services Ltd., Air Nunavut Ltd., Calm Air LP and Northern Allied Nunavut Travel Inc.

The territory’s Nunavummi Nangminiqaqtunik Ikajuuti policy gives preference to bids from local Nunavut, Inuit-owned businesses.

This trial run is meant to gauge the feasibility of a regular scheduled flight service between Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit. There are currently no scheduled flights between Sanikiluaq and any other Nunavut community.

As it stands, Sanikiluaq residents have the option of flying south to Winnipeg on Calm Air. The community is also served by Air Inuit through Nunavik, though that airline has halted commercial flights to and from the community since the pandemic started.

The contract means Arctic Fresh and Panorama will operate a twice-weekly flight between Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit over a six-month period, with the option of the contract being extended by an additional 18 months.

Panorama did not indicate which aircraft it will use to run the flights, though the tender specified a small aircraft that could carry a minimum of eight passengers.

The air carrier will be required to advertise and sell tickets to both the territorial government and the public, while the government would guarantee the purchase of six seats per leg.

Arctic Fresh and Panorama have yet to announce when they will launch the new flights.

This shows the GN’s bid analysis of the quotes it received for its tender to operate flights between Sanikiluaq and Iqaluit on a trial basis.

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(11) Comments:

  1. Posted by brad lucas on

    Panorama uses PC12s. single engine ops over a 1000 miles of open water…just sayin.

    • Posted by Av Geek on

      Check the flight route. Re due your calculations. Check flight rules on single engine a/c flying over water. PC 12s are proven to be one a the safest a/c on the market.

  2. Posted by northern on

    This is so poorly ironic. The people of Sani finally get air service to Iqaluit and non essential passengers won’t be able to go there due to the Covid emergency. I hope this doesn’t squash this project.

  3. Posted by pissed off on

    Same old abuse of the NNI clause. A company comes out of nowhere with new “ expertise“ and gets in bed with a Southern company.

    I hope the GN will never think of contracting the surgery services that way because Inuit owned medical sevices company would come out of the woodwork.

    Just saying


    • Posted by Look at the numbers on

      If you look at the numbers, Arctic Fresh would have won even if they had no NNI adjustment at all. They had a better price than anyone else.

    • Posted by Northern Inuit on

      Another fine potato company

      • Posted by Oppenhiemer on

        Tell us what you would prefer, then tell us why we don’t have that happening.

  4. Posted by Old times on

    There go my Winnipeg trip to get to sanikiluaq 👎

  5. Posted by The Old Trapper on

    Once again we see the GN NNI policy and the wisdom behind it.
    Where else in the world would a couple with no experience whatsoever be able to bid on and win a lucrative government aviation contract. And the contract guarantees that 2/3 of your seats would be sold.
    What an amazing government!

  6. Posted by Arctic Fresh on

    Hard to imagine relying on a food delivery company to carry passengers on a plane across hundreds of miles of open sea over the remote Hudson Bay. I wish them well, but the fact that Canadian North didn’t even bother bidding on the contract speaks volumes.

    • Posted by Canadian Pilot on

      Panorama Aviation are the ones operating the flights. They have been based out of Iqaluit for a couple of years now and are used to flights within Nunavut…

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