The origins of Canadian Regional go back over 40 years to when Time Air was formed by Walter “Stub” Ross from Lethbridge in Alberta. Time Air acquired Southern Frontier Airlines and North Canada Air. In January 1991, Canadian Regional Airlines was formed as a holding company to hold and manage Canadian Airlines Corporation’s regional airline interests. At that time Canadian Airlines Corporation acquired 100% of both of Time Air and Ontario Express as well as 70% of Inter-Canadien.
In April 1993, Canadian Regional Airlines brought the operations of Time Air and Ontario Express together to operate as Canadian Regional Airlines. The two carriers were legally amalgamated in July 1998 and by then, Inter-Canadien had become a wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian Regional Airlines. Canadian Regional Airlines was then the largest regional carrier in Canada. As well for a short period of time, Calm Air was a Canadian Airlines partner. In September 1998, Canadian Regional sold Inter-Canadien. Canadian Regional was integrated into the Air Canada family during the year 2000.
In January 2001, a newly merged carrier called Air Canada Regional Inc was established. A wholly owned subsidiary of Air Canada, this company combined the individual strengths of four regional airlines – Air BC, Air Nova, Air Ontario, and Canadian Regional Airlines. Consolidation of these four companies was completed in 2002 and was marked by the launch of a new name and brand - Air Canada Jazz. Calm Air is still an airline operating within the prairies.
Time Air operated Fokker F28 Fellowship twin jets (see photo above) as Canadian Regional flights. At one point, Time Air was the largest F28 operator in the world.
Canadian Regional operated 7 ATR 42-300s turboprops between 1993 and 1998 when they were transferred to Inter-Canadien. Those ATR42 came from Ontario Express who first operated them in 1988. This was the first airline to import and operate them in Canada. Ontario Express was also the first airline to import in Canada the Jetstream 31 in 1987, when the company first started its operations in Ontario. Both the Jetstream 31 and the ATR42 proved to be very successful aircraft in the regional airline environment. Canadian Regional also operated 13 de Havilland Canada DHC-8-100 Dash 8 and 15 stretched de Havilland Canada DHC-8-300 Dash 8 turboprops from 1994 until the consolidation. Many still operate as Air Canada Jazz planes.