Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport

Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport
Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport
Saskatoon International Airport
Saskatoon, Airport.jpg
WMO: 71866
Airport type Public
Owner Transport Canada
Operator Saskatoon Airport Authority
Serves Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Elevation AMSL 1,654 ft / 504 m
Coordinates 52°10′15″N 106°42′00″W / 52.17083°N 106.7°W / 52.17083; -106.7Coordinates: 52°10′15″N 106°42′00″W / 52.17083°N 106.7°W / 52.17083; -106.7
CYXE is located in Saskatchewan
Location in Saskatchewan
Direction Length Surface
ft m
09/27 8,300 2,530 Asphalt
15/33 6,200 1,890 Asphalt
Statistics (2010)
Aircraft movements 88,210
Passengers 1,215,923
Sources: Canada Flight Supplement,[1]Transport Canada[2]
Environment Canada[3]
Movements from Statistics Canada[4]
Passengers from Airports Council International[5]
Airport Departures Area

Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport (IATA: YXEICAO: CYXE), is an international airport located 3 NM (5.6 km; 3.5 mi) northwest of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan Canada. The airport is serviced by passenger, courier and air freight operators.

The airport has six passenger bridges, five ground loading positions, 32 check-in points and a customs/immigration arrivals area. Some bridges can handle aircraft as large as the Boeing 747.[6]

For international arrivals the airport is classified as an airport of entry by NAV CANADA and is staffed by the Canada Border Services Agency. CBSA officers at this airport can handle aircraft with no more than 200 passengers, however they can handle up to 300 if the aircraft is unloaded in stages.[1]

In 2001, traffic in YXE exceeded 800,000 passengers, making YXE the largest airport in the province; by 2005 traffic reached over 900,000 passengers.[7] In 2007 passenger traffic exceeded the 1,000,000 mark.[8] With 1,215,923 passengers[5] and 88,627 aircraft movements[4] in 2010, it was the 12th busiest airport in Canada by total passengers.



On June 1, 1929 the city of Saskatoon was given a "License For Air Harbour" and the airport was established, this provided a home for the Saskatoon Aero Club.[9][10]

In 1940 the city leased the airport to the Royal Canadian Air Force. The airport became RCAF Station Saskatoon. During the war years this was part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan, with the Canadian Forces No. 4 Flight Training School established at the airport. To support these operations four large hangars were built as well as support buildings including a hospital and control tower.

After the war (1947) the airport was transferred to the Canadian Department of Transport for civilian use. That year Trans-Canada Air Lines, now known as Air Canada, started providing passenger service using DC-3 aircraft.

Air Canada in 1950 began operating the Canadair North Star at the airport, followed by the Vickers Viscount in 1955. A new terminal building was also constructed in 1955. The primary runway (09/27) was lengthened in 1954 and again in 1960 to 8,300 ft (2,530 m). While the secondary runway (15/33) was lengthened in 1963 to 6,200 ft (1,890 m).

As a result of the RCAF's post-war expansion, the RCAF re-acquired the military portion of the property and RCAF Station Saskatoon re-opened as an air training facility in October 1950. That same year, No. 23 Wing was formed to oversee 406 (Linx) Squadron and several other Auxiliary (Reserve) Squadrons in Western Canada. Permanent Married Quarters were built at the end of 1952, and the following year, the Air Marshall Curtis School opened for the children of station personnel.

No. 1 Advance Flying School opened at the station in 1952, one of the many Flying Training Schools opened across Canada to train RAF, RCAF and NATO aircrews. Students at the school trained on Mitchell Bombers and Expeditor aircraft trainers. Other lodger units at the station included, No. 3043 Technical Training Unit (Auxiliary) and No. 4002 Medical Unit (Auxiliary).

In 1956, the Instrument Flying School moved to Saskatoon from RCAF Station Centralia.

In 1962, control of RCAF Station Saskatoon was transferred from Training Command to Air Transport Command, but this change would be short-lived. RCAF Station Saskatoon closed in 1964 and both 406 Squadron and 23 Wing were disbanded.

RCAF Detachment No. 1005 Technical Support Depot was established at the site, serving as a disposal and storage facility for disused aircraft. This detachment remained at the Saskatoon Airport until closing in 1978.

Due to larger aircraft and more frequent flights, in 1972 plans were drafted for a new terminal building. The new terminal was completed and opened on November 29, 1975. The former terminal was renovated in 1977. From 1977 to 1984 Boeing 747 charter flights were operated by Wardair to Europe until Wardair was bought by Canadian Airlines International.

In 1993 the name of the airport was changed to recognize Canada's 13th Prime Minister John Diefenbaker. In 1995 under the Canada-US Open Skies agreement Northwest Airlines started service to Minneapolis – Saint Paul. In 1996 WestJet began Boeing 737-200 service. In 1999 the airport was turned over to the Saskatoon Airport Authority, as part of the National Airports Policy.

NAV CANADA Control Tower Constructed in 2000

In 2000 NAV CANADA constructed a new control tower and the airport authority began renovations and expansions to the terminal building. In October 2002 the first two phases of renovations to the air terminal building was completed at a cost of $18 Million. The updated terminal facilities are designed to handle 1.4 million passengers annually.

In 2005 additional renovations were completed to the check-in area and baggage screening as well as the addition of a fifth bridge. Between October, 2005 and May 2008 Air Canada ended "mainline" service into Saskatoon, turning over routes to Air Canada Jazz. In 2006 the airport also expanded public parking to 500 stalls, Pronto Airways started operating at the airport. In 2006 Transwest Air introduced service to Fort McMurray, Alberta. For a short period of time between 2006 and April 2007 Northwestern Air also operated flights to Fort McMurray.

In March 2008 work started on the rehabilitation of runway 09/27, taxiway Foxtrot and Alpha at a cost of $16M.[11][12] In 2008, United Airlines announced non-stop regional service from Denver,[13] which began on September 2, 2008. In 2009, United announced regional service from Chicago;[14] the non-stop flight, which began on June 4, 2009, was replaced on June 10, 2010, by a one-stop flight to O'Hare.[15]

Between 2009 and 2018, The Saskatoon Airport Authority says that new runways, terminal renovations, and expansions to the tune of $70 million will be spent. 1.04 million passengers annually use the Saskatoon airport facility and this is expected to climb to 1.2 million by 2011. [16] [17]
In 2010 construction started on apron improvements, remote stands and preparatory work to start on reconstruction of the terminal building in 2011. The expansion is designed to accommodate 8 bridges, expanded passenger waiting areas, a business/first class lounge and expanded baggage claim area.[18][19]

Other passenger services

Prairie Unique Gifts

The airport contains a small historical display on both the main floor and observation area on the second floor. Retail outlets include a Relay outlet (including duty-free), and a Prairie Unique Gifts outlet. Food services consist of a Tim Hortons, the Crossroads Grill and The Prairie Elevator Restaurant & Lounge. Past pre-board screening there is a To Go outlet.

A SaskTel business centre is located across from the check-in counters. The Saskatoon Airport does not offer any business class lounges.

Ground transportation

Saskatoon Transit (Route No 11) provides city bus service between the airport and the downtown core and University of Saskatchewan campus. This route is currently under construction. An accurate transit schedule can be found at Saskatoon Transit Route & Schedule Adjustments

Taxi service is provided from the airport, as well as several car rental agencies. Currently United Cabs Ltd. is the licensed provider of both taxi and limousine services.[20] Several hotels near the airport provide shuttle services.

Other air side services

F28 from Canadian Regional stored at YXE

In addition to the main terminal the airport also contains a variety of additional buildings. These include the International Aviation Terminal (used by Air Canada Cargo, Anderson Aviation, Dryden Air-services and Karl's Air Services), a fire hall, Saskatoon Aerocentre (operated by West Wind Aviation), Purolator cargo facility and a variety of hangars used by various airlines.[21]

Many former Air Canada Jazz and Canadian Regional Airlines Fokker F28 aircraft have been stored at the airport since they were retired from the fleet in 2003.

The Saskatchewan Air Ambulance providing fixed wing air ambulance services has its headquarter and main base at the airport. [22] Plans exist to also base a Shock Trauma Air Rescue Society, helicopter out of the Saskatoon airport. [23]

Airlines and destinations

Note: denotes charter operators and their destinations

Check-in for Air Canada and WestJet
Check-in for Pronto, Skyservice,sunwing and Air Transat
Check-in for WestJet
Airlines Destinations
Air Canada Toronto-Pearson
Seasonal: Ottawa, Halifax
Air Canada Express operated by Jazz Air Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Winnipeg
Air Transat Seasonal: Cancún, Montego Bay, Puerto Plata, Puerto Vallarta, Punta Cana
Delta Connection operated by Compass Airlines and SkyWest Airlines Minneapolis/St. Paul
Pronto Airways Prince Albert, Points North, Stony Rapids, Uranium City, Wollaston, Fond Du Lac, Regina
Seasonal: Baker Lake, Rankin Inlet
Sunwing Airlines Seasonal: Cancún, Montego Bay, Huatulco, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Varadero
Transwest Air Fond Du Lac, Fort McMurray, La Ronge, Points North, Prince Albert, Stony Rapids, Wollaston
United Express operated by SkyWest Airlines Chicago-O'Hare, Denver
West Wind Aviation Regina [departs Shell Aerocentre]
WestJet Calgary, Edmonton, Kelowna, Toronto-Pearson
Seasonal: Cancún, Las Vegas, Montego Bay, Phoenix, Puerto Vallarta, Vancouver, Victoria

Cargo service

Airlines Destinations
Cargojet Airways Regina, Winnipeg[24]
Purolator Courier operated by Kelowna Flightcraft Air Charter

Accidents and incidents

  • On May 22, 2008 a Canadian North Boeing 737-200 enroute from Fort MacKay/Horizon Airport encountered a major vibration and fire in the right engine on final approach to Saskatoon. The fire occurred when the aircraft was 50 m (160 ft) above the ground and 1,700 m (5,600 ft) from Runway 33. The aircraft had 102 passengers and 5 crew on board. There were no injuries. The aircraft was operating a charter service (Flight 1714) that was scheduled as Fort McKay/Horizon - Saskatoon - Montreal - Moncton.[25]
  • On April 1, 2011 a Fugro Aviation Canada Limited CASA C-212, C-FDKM, carrying 3 crew, crashed while attempting a landing at Saskatoon Airport. After declaring an emergency with an engine failure, the aircraft crashed on a Saskatoon street (Wanuskewin Drive) and hit concrete sound barrier. 1 killed, 2 injured.[26]


Saskatoon John G. Diefenbaker International Airport

See also


  1. ^ a b Canada Flight Supplement. Effective 0901Z 20 October 2011 to 0901Z 15 December 2011
  2. ^ Airport Divestiture Status Report
  3. ^ Synoptic/Metstat Station Information
  4. ^ a b Total aircraft movements by class of operation — NAV CANADA towers
  5. ^ a b Airport Traffic Reports
  6. ^ Facts & Figures
  7. ^ 2005 Passenger Traffic at Saskatoon's Airport sets new record
  8. ^ John G. Diefenbaker Welcomes 1 Millionth Passenger of 2007 December 18, 2007 Press Release
  9. ^ 2004 Annual Report
  10. ^ 75 years of Aviation History in Saskatoon
  11. ^ Runway 09-27 April 15, 2008
  12. ^ Rehabilitation of Runway 09-27, Taxiway Alpha (west) and foxtrot, and Apron VI and VII Construction Contract No. 0230-00-00-28 Plan of Construction Operations - Pryde Schropp McComb, Inc
  13. ^ "Saskatoon will get Denver flight". Leader-Post. CanWest. May 21, 2008. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  14. ^ Kyle, Cassandra (March 13, 2009). "Saskatoon, Chicago united". The StarPhoenix (CanWest) 
  15. ^
  16. ^ "Canadian airports flying high". The StarPhoenix. CanWest. July 5, 2008. Retrieved 2010-08-02. 
  17. ^ Isfeld, Gordon; Morris, Helen (July 5, 2008). "Canadian airports flying high. Passenger numbers hitting record levels throughout country. Expansion: Saskatoon's airport ' an asset to the community '". Saskatoon Star Phoenix Canwest News Services: pp. D1 and D4. 
  18. ^ Reconstruction Work
  19. ^ 3D Rendering of Terminal Expansion
  20. ^ Taxi services
  21. ^ Airport Map
  22. ^ (PDF) LIFEGUARD - Saskatchewan Air Ambulance, Ministry of Health,, retrieved 2011-20-20 
  23. ^ "SASKATCHEWAN MOVES FORWARD WITH HELICOPTER AIR MEDICAL SERVICE" (html) (Press release). Government of Saskatchewan. JAPRIL 6, 2011. Retrieved 2011-20-20. 
  24. ^
  25. ^ The Aviation Herald
  26. ^ Maclean, Rory (APRIL 2, 2011). "Plane crashes on Wanuskewin Drive; one killed, two in Saskatoon hospital". The StarPhoenix. Postmedia Network. Retrieved 2011-04-02. 

External links

Accident history for YXE at Aviation Safety Network


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