Toronto Pearson International Airport

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"Toronto Airport", "Pearson Airport", and "YYZ" redirect here. For other airports in Toronto, see List of airports in the Greater Toronto Area. For the airfield in Vancouver, Washington, United States, see Pearson Field. For the instrumental piece from the Canadian band Rush, see YYZ (instrumental).
Toronto Pearson International Airport
Aéroport international Pearson de Toronto
Toronto Pearson Airport Logo.svg
YYZ Aerial 2.jpg
WMO: 71624
Airport type Public
Owner Transport Canada
Operator Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA)
Serves Greater Toronto Area
Location Mississauga and Toronto, Ontario
Hub for



Time zone EST (UTC−05:00)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC−04:00)
Elevation AMSL 569 ft / 173 m
Coordinates 43°40′36″N 079°37′50″W / 43.67667°N 79.63056°W / 43.67667; -79.63056Coordinates: 43°40′36″N 079°37′50″W / 43.67667°N 79.63056°W / 43.67667; -79.63056
YYZ is located in Ontario
Location within Ontario
Direction Length Surface
ft m
05/23 11,120 3,389 Asphalt/Concrete
06L/24R 9,697 2,956 Asphalt
06R/24L 9,000 2,743 Asphalt
15L/33R 11,050 3,368 Asphalt
15R/33L 9,088 2,770 Asphalt
Statistics (2014)
Number of Passengers (2014) 38,571,961
Aircraft movements (2014) 432,825
Sources: Canada Flight Supplement[1]
Environment Canada[2]
Transport Canada[3]
Movements from GTAA[4]
Passengers from the GTAA[5]

Toronto Pearson International Airport (also known as Lester B. Pearson International Airport or simply Pearson Airport or Toronto Pearson) (IATA: YYZICAO: CYYZ) is an international airport serving the city of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, its metropolitan area, and the Golden Horseshoe, an urban agglomeration of 8.7 million people.[6] The airport is located 22.5 km (14.0 mi) northwest of Downtown Toronto, with the bulk of the airport (including the two main terminals) located in the adjacent city of Mississauga, and a small portion extending into Toronto's western district.[7] The airport is named in honour of Lester B. Pearson, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and 14th Prime Minister of Canada.

Pearson is the largest and busiest airport in Canada.[8] In 2014, it handled 38,571,961 passengers[5] and 432,825 aircraft movements.[4] It is the world's 34th-busiest airport by total passenger traffic, 23rd-busiest airport by international passenger traffic, and 15th-busiest airport by flights. Pearson is a major North American global gateway, handling more international passengers than any airport in North America other than John F. Kennedy International Airport.[9]

Pearson is the main hub for Air Canada.[10][11] It is also a hub for passenger airline WestJet and cargo airline FedEx Express, and serves as an operating base for passenger airlines Air Transat and Sunwing Airlines. Pearson Airport is operated by the Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) as part of Transport Canada's National Airports System[12] and is one of eight Canadian airports with facilities for United States border preclearance.

An extensive network of non-stop domestic flights is operated from Pearson by several airlines to all major and many secondary cities across all provinces of Canada.[13] As of 2015, over 75 airlines operate around 1,100 daily departures from Toronto Pearson to more than 180 destinations across all six of the world's inhabited continents.[14][15][16]



Malton Airport in 1939. View looking north on Sixth Line, now Airport Road.[17]

In February 1935, the Government of Canada announced its intention to build an airport in Toronto. A site near Malton, northwest of Toronto, was chosen as the location for the new airport.[17]

In April 1937, land agents representing the Toronto Harbour Commission approached farmers in Malton who owned Lots 6-10 on Concession 5 and 6 to acquire land for Malton Airport. Agreements were drawn up for a total purchase of 570.9 hectares (1,410.8 acres), and several farmers sold lots ranging in size from 20 to 80 hectares (50 to 200 acres).[17][18]

The Frank Chapman Farm House - the first terminal and office at Malton Airport[17][18]

The Chapman farm house was the first office and airport terminal.[17][18]


The second terminal and administration building at Malton Airport c. 1943. The Toronto Harbour Commission constructed this wood frame terminal in 1939.[18] This terminal was a twin of the terminal on Toronto Island.

The second terminal, a standard wood frame building, was built in 1938. The airport at the time covered 170 hectares (420 acres) with full lighting, radio, weather reporting equipment, two hard surface runways, and one grass landing strip. The first scheduled passenger flight to Malton Airport was a Trans-Canada Airlines DC-3 that landed on August 29, 1939.[19]

From June 1940 to July 1942, during the Second World War, the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) operated No. 1 Elementary Service Flying School (EFTS) at Malton Airport.[20]


A third "TCA" terminal was built to the western side of second wood frame terminal in 1949.[18] It could handle 400,000 passengers per year and had an observation deck on the roof. In front of the old terminal was a set of stairs leading to a ramp to allow visitors to access the rooftop observation deck. Further expansion saw the expropriation of land near the hamlet of Elmbank. The runways were 5/23, a 3,368 m (11,050 ft) runway (used for test flights of the CF-105 Arrow (Avro Arrow) fighter from the Avro Canada plant); 14/32, a 3,498 m (11,475 ft) runway (replaced by 15L/33R); and 10/28, a 2,263 m (7,425 ft) runway that now is a taxiway.[21]

In November 1958, the City of Toronto sold the airport to the federal Department of Transport; in 1960, it was renamed Toronto International Airport.[22]

The 1939 and 1949 addition (and surrounding structures) were torn down in 1964 with the area developed for Air Canada's hangar with the terminal site now occupied by the Vista Cargo Centres (Cargo Area 5).

Malton "TCA" Airport 1960. This was the third terminal at Malton Airport and was built in 1948-49. It was demolished after "Aeroquay One" came on-stream in 1964. The crowd of people is watching the planes come and go from the observation deck.

U.S. border preclearance[edit]

Preclearance was pioneered at Pearson in 1952 as a convenience to allow it to connect as a domestic airport to the many smaller airports in the United States that at the time lacked customs and immigration facilities. It was at first a service performed by U.S. Customs agents at the gate. U.S. federal government concerns over smuggling between precleared and non-cleared passengers at Toronto Pearson (who at that time shared mixed terminal space) nearly ended the program in the 1970s, until a compromise was reached that called for segregated facilities. Today, Pearson handles 8 million passengers through its U.S. customs and immigration preclearance facilities per year, which is roughly one quarter of all passenger traffic at the airport.[23]

Aeroquay One[edit]

The third "TCA" terminal was demolished in the late 1960s and replaced by the Aeroquay One terminal building, which was built further south of the original site along Airport Road. Aeroquay One (also called Terminal One) had a square central structure housing ticketing and baggage facilities topped by a parking garage with about eight levels and ringed by a two-storey passenger concourse leading to the gates. It was designed by John B. Parkin, with construction taking place between 1957 and 1964. Aeroquay One was officially opened on February 28, 1964 by Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson.[18]

Aeroquay One ceased operations on April 5, 2004, and has since been demolished.

Former Terminal 2[edit]

A view of Toronto International Airport in April 1973, showing the original Terminal 1 or Aeroquay One (now demolished)

Considered state-of-the-art in the 1960s, the original Terminal 1 became overloaded by the early 1970s. Terminal 2 opened as a passenger airline terminal on June 15, 1972. Initially, it served only charter airlines, but it became the hub for Air Canada passenger flights on April 29, 1973.

While a legend suggests that Terminal 2 was originally intended as a freight terminal, this was not the case. The legend may have stemmed from the fact that a cargo facility was used as a temporary passenger terminal while waiting for completion of the new terminal.[24]

The airport was renamed Lester B. Pearson International Airport in 1984, in honour of Lester B. Pearson, the fourteenth Prime Minister of Canada and recipient of the 1957 Nobel Peace Prize. Operationally, the airport is often referred to as Toronto Pearson.

Terminal 2 had a facility for United States border preclearance and handled both domestic and international trans-border traffic. Domestic traffic was moved to the new Terminal 1 when it became operational, leaving Terminal 2 to handle international traffic to the United States for Air Canada and its Star Alliance partner United Airlines.

A passenger tunnel with moving walkways at the northwest corner of Terminal 2 connected it with Terminal 1.

Terminal 2 saw its last day in operation as a passenger terminal January 29, 2007. The following day, airlines moved to the newly completed Pier F, or Hammerhead Pier at the current Terminal 1.

Demolition of Terminal 2 began in April 2007 and concluded in November 2008.[25]

Operation Yellow Ribbon[edit]

During the September 11 attacks in 2001, Toronto Pearson International Airport played a role in Operation Yellow Ribbon. It received 14 of the diverted international flights that were destined for the United States after the closure of US airspace.[26]

Recent history[edit]

In order to accommodate its growing aircraft volume, substantial redevelopment of the airside and infield systems has taken place. Cargo facilities were added to the centre of the airport between the parallel north–south runways in order to increase capabilities and to offset the loss of the cargo facilities that were removed for the current terminal buildings.[27] Two runways were built to increase the number of aircraft that Toronto Pearson could process. A north–south runway, 15R/33L, was added and completed in 1997. Another east–west runway, 06R/24L, was completed in 2002.[28]

The continued increase of air traffic at Toronto Pearson resulted in a 2013 decision by Transport Canada to proceed with the planning and construction of Toronto Pickering International Airport[29] (following a 2001 decision to simply revive plans for the airport), which would be approximately 50 km (31 mi) east of Toronto Pearson and handle up to 11.9 million passengers per year by 2032 with its three runways.[30]


Terminal 1 seen from the ramp

Toronto Pearson International Airport has two operating terminals, Terminals 1 and 3. T1 opened on April 6, 2004. The old Terminal 1, which closed simultaneously with the opening, was demolished to make room for additional gates at Pier E. Pier F at Terminal 1, which has an enlarged end called "Hammerhead F", opened on January 30, 2007 to replace Terminal 2. This pier accommodates international traffic and adds 7 million passengers per year to the airport's total capacity. Redevelopment of the airport was a logistical challenge, as the existing terminals remained operational throughout construction and demolition.

As of August 2010, free high-speed Wi-Fi internet access is available throughout all passenger terminals at Toronto Pearson.[31]

Terminal 1[edit]

Terminal 1 Check-in Hall
Mississauga skyline viewed from terminal 1
Inuksuk sculptures stand in front of the departures entrance at Terminal 1.

Terminal 1 is designed to handle domestic, international, and trans-border flights in one facility. The terminal features three piers: Piers D and E with 38 gates and Pier F with 23 gates. Pier F serves transborder and international flights, replacing Terminal 2 and the Infield Terminal (IFT). A Pier G is slated to be built in the future if demand warrants[32] and the overall site plan allows for two additional piers, H and I, if needed.[33]

The terminal was designed by joint venture Airports Architects Canada (Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP; Adamson Associates Architects; and Moshe Safdie and Associates).[34]

Air Canada and all other Star Alliance airlines that serve Toronto operate out of Terminal 1; however, the terminal is also used by airlines that are not members of Star Alliance. Terminal 1 contains 58 gates: D1, D3, D5, D7-D12, D20, D22, D24, D26, D28, D31–D45 (D32, D34, D36 also serve US flights and carry F designation), D51, D53, D55, D57 (also carry F designation), F60–F63, F64A–F64B, F65, F66A–F66B, F/E67–F/E81 (F68-F73 and F78-F81 serve both US and international flights but E74-E77 are international only), F91, and F93. Two of the gates, E73 and E75, can accommodate the Airbus A380. Emirates is the only operator of this type of airplane at Toronto Pearson.

Measuring over 567,000 square metres (6,000,000 sq ft), Terminal 1 is among the largest buildings in the world by floor space. It is also home to the ThyssenKrupp Express Walkway, the world's fastest moving walkway.[35]

Along with the standard border facilities, the terminal also contains customs "B" checkpoints along the international arrivals walkway. Passengers that are connecting from an international or trans-border arrival to another international (non-U.S.) departure in Terminal 1 go to one of these checkpoints for passport control and immigration checks, then are directed to Pier F. This alleviates the need to recheck bags, pass through security screening, and relieves congestion in the primary customs hall.[32]

Terminal 3[edit]

The Grand Hall of Terminal 3

Terminal 3, which opened on February 21, 1991, was built to offset traffic from the old Terminals 1 and 2. Architects for the terminal were two Toronto-based firms, B+H Architects and Scott Associates Architects Inc.[36] Terminal 3 was initially advertised as "Trillium Terminal 3" and the "Trillium Terminal". Terminal 3 has 1,100,000 square feet (100,000 m2) of floor space and 24 gates.[37] It was built as a private venture and was a state-of-the-art terminal containing a U.S. customs preclearance facility, and was the base of operations for the Canadian Airlines hub. A parking garage and hotel is located across from the terminal and is connected by an elevated pedestrian walkway. At the time of the opening, the hotel was managed by Swissôtel. However, it was rebranded as a Sheraton property in October 1993.[38] In 1997, the GTAA purchased Terminal 3 and shortly thereafter implemented a C$350 million expansion.[39]

A team of coordinators known as T3RD oversaw the redevelopment and expansion of Terminal 3.[40] In 2004, the Pier C Expansion opened, followed by the East Processor Extension (EPE) in June 2006, adding 40 new check-in counters, new retail space, additional secure 'hold-screening' for baggage, and a huge picture window that offers one of the most convenient apron viewing locations at the airport. This phase of the expansion also included improved Canadian Border services and a more open arrivals hall. Phase II of the EPE was completed in 2007 and includes larger security screening areas and additional international baggage claim areas. The West Processor Expansion Shell was completed in early 2008. There are currently no plans mentioned to rename this terminal to "Terminal 2," especially since the actual Terminal 2 has been closed and demolished.

All SkyTeam and Oneworld airlines that serve Pearson operate from Terminal 3, along with WestJet, Air Transat, and most other airlines that are unaffiliated with an airline alliance. Terminal 3 has 48 gates: A1–A6, B1a-B1d, B2a-B2b, B3-B5, B7–B20, B22 and C24–C41.

Infield Terminal[edit]

The infield terminal was built to handle traffic displaced during the development and construction of the current Terminal 1.[41] Its gates were opened in 2002 and 2003.[42] A first class lounge was opened in 2005.[43] The terminal, also known as the IFT, has 11 gates (521 to 531). Though currently inoperative, the terminal has recently been refurbished and plans are in place to reactivate it if necessary in the future to accommodate seasonal or overflow demand, or to provide additional capacity during future terminal building construction at the airport.

When it was in use, passengers were transported by bus between Terminal 1 and the IFT to reach their gates.[42]

The Infield Terminal is frequently used as a location to film major motion pictures and television productions.[44]

Infrastructure and services[edit]

LINK Train[edit]

LINK Train
Terminal 1
Terminal 3
Main article: LINK Train

The LINK Train is an automated people mover that opened in 2006 with two 6-car trains that run between Terminal 1, Terminal 3, and the Value Park Lot, where a reduced rate and airport staff parking lot exists between Airport Road and Viscount Road.[45] In 2009, a new 8,500 vehicle parking garage opened near Viscount station, linked via a bridge across Viscount Road. The structure accommodates long term parking, employee parking, and rental car operations.

Union Pearson Express[edit]

UP Express
Terminal 1
Weston GO Station
Bloor GO Station
Union Station
Main article: Union Pearson Express

The Union Pearson Express is an express airport rail link between the Pearson and Union Station in Downtown Toronto that opened in 2015. UP Express connects to the airport at Terminal 1, with intermediate stops at Weston and Bloor.


The platform of the LINK Train's Terminal 3 station
  • GTAA Fire and Emergency Service has 2 fire stations to provide firefighting and rescue operations. The fire service has 5 crash tenders as well as two pumpers, an aerial ladder and heavy rescue unit. The fire service is supported by a crew of 80 firefighters.
  • Peel Regional Police is the primary law enforcement service at the airport. Airport Division is located on 2951 Convair Drive, on the southern perimeter of the airport near the Facilities Building adjacent to Highway 401.
  • The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) maintains a Toronto Airport Detachment to provide federal police services and is located at 255 Attwell Drive east of the airport in Etobicoke. The RCMP formerly provided policing at the airport. In December 2009, the Peel force asked the RCMP to assist in policing the airport due to the failed bombing incident at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport. The Canada Border Services Agency, as well as the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, maintain extensive operations at the airport.
  • The Greater Toronto Airports Authority administration offices are located on Convair Drive near the southeast corner of the airport. They were relocated when the original office was demolished to make way for the new Terminal 1 parking facilities.
  • Skyservice Business Aviation
  • Cara Operations – onboard food catering
  • Federal Express - located at the northwest end of the airport

There are two supplies of aviation fuel at the airport:

  • Esso Avitat – aviation fuel (Jet A-1)
  • Shell Aerocentre – aviation fuel (Jet A-1)

Air Traffic Control[edit]

Cockpit view of runway 06R

Pearson is home to Toronto Area Control Centre, one of seven Air Control Centres in Canada, all of which are operated by Nav Canada.

Pearson is one of two airports in Canada with a Traffic Management Unit (TMU) to help control planes on the apron areas.[46] The TMU is located in the tower at Terminal 1. The airport's main control tower is located within the infield operations area.

Airport lounges[edit]

All three major airline alliances (Star Alliance, SkyTeam, and Oneworld) have a large presence at Toronto Pearson, and therefore all maintain frequent flyer lounges within the airport. There are also several "Pay-In" lounges open for use by all passengers, regardless of airline, frequent flyer status, or class of travel.

Terminal 1
  • Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge (Star Alliance)[47]
    • Domestic (Take elevator to the left at security, next to Tim Hortons)
    • International (Level 3, before the escalators down to gates)
    • International – USA Transborder (Level 4, take elevators to the right at security)
  • Plaza Premium Lounge ("Pay-In" Lounge)[48]
    • Domestic (After main security on Level 3, on the right)
    • International (Next to Gate E77, take the elevator to Level 3)
    • International - USA Transborder (Near Gate F91)
Terminal 3

Airfield maintenance[edit]

The airport's 115-member airfield maintenance unit is responsible for general maintenance and repairs at the airport. From mid-November to mid-April, the unit is in winter mode armed with a $38 million snow removal budget.[52] The airport employs 11 Vammas PSB series[52] and 4 Oshkosh HT-Series[53] snowplow units.


Pearson Airport's Central De-icing Facility is the largest in the world, servicing about 10,500 aircraft each winter. The six de-icing bays can handle up to 12 aircraft at a time, taking between 2 and 19 minutes per aircraft.[54]

During de-icing, a heated glycol and water mixture is applied to the aircraft to remove frozen contamination adhering to critical flight control surfaces. With anti-icing, additional chemicals are applied to provide long-term protection against icing.[55]

Private aircraft[edit]

Located at the north end of the airfield are numerous hangars for personal private jets and charter aircraft, along with VIP passenger terminal facilities and maintenance services for these aircraft.[56]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Passenger airlines and destinations[edit]

A British Airways Boeing 787-8 landing with downtown Mississauga in the background
A heritage Air Canada Airbus A319 taxiing
A KLM Airbus A330-200 landing
Airlines Destinations Terminal
Aer Lingus
operated by ASL Airlines Ireland
Dublin 3
Aeroméxico Mexico City 3
Air Canada Amsterdam, Antigua, Aruba, Barbados (ends January 6, 2016), Beijing–Capital, Bermuda, Bogotá, Boston, Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Calgary, Chicago–O'Hare, Copenhagen, Deer Lake, Delhi, Denver, Dubai–International, Edmonton, Fort McMurray, Fort Myers, Frankfurt, Geneva, Grand Cayman, Halifax, Havana, Hong Kong, Istanbul–Atatürk, London–Heathrow, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Miami, Montréal–Trudeau, Munich, New York–LaGuardia, Newark, Ottawa, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Providenciales, Regina, Rio de Janeiro–Galeão, Rome–Fiumicino, St. John's (NL), Saint Lucia–Hewanorra, Salt Lake City (begins May 27, 2016),[57] San Francisco, Santiago de Chile, São Paulo–Guarulhos, Saskatoon, Seattle/Tacoma, Seoul–Incheon (resumes June 17, 2016),[58] Shanghai–Pudong, Sydney (AU), Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion, Tokyo–Haneda, Vancouver, Victoria, Winnipeg, Zürich
Seasonal: Cozumel, Eagle/Vail, Gander, George Town/Exuma, Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo, Madrid, Milan–Malpensa, Portland (OR) (resumes May 26, 2016),[59] Puerto Vallarta, San Juan, Tokyo–Narita, West Palm Beach
Air Canada Express Atlanta, Austin, Baltimore, Boston, Charlotte, Charlottetown, Chicago–O'Hare, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus (OH), Dallas/Fort Worth, Detroit, Fredericton, Harrisburg, Hartford, Houston–Intercontinental, Indianapolis, Jacksonville (FL) (begins May 21, 2016),[60] Kansas City, Kingston (ON), London (ON), Milwaukee, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Moncton, Montréal–Trudeau, Nashville, New Orleans, New York–JFK, New York–LaGuardia, Newark, North Bay, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Québec City, Raleigh/Durham, Rochester (NY), Saint John (NB), St. Louis, Sarnia, Sault Ste. Marie (ON), Sudbury, Syracuse, Thunder Bay, Timmins, Washington–Dulles (begins May 2, 2016),[61] Washington–National, Windsor, Winnipeg
Seasonal: Atlantic City, Mont-Tremblant, Saskatoon, Regina
Air Canada Rouge Barbados (begins January 7, 2016), Barcelona, Cancún, Cayo Coco/Cayo Guillermo, Dublin, Fort Lauderdale, Grenada, Holguin, Kelowna, Kingston–Norman Manley, Las Vegas, Liberia (CR), Lima, Montego Bay, Nassau, Orlando, Panama City, Phoenix, Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Samaná, San Diego, San José (CR), Santa Clara, Sarasota, Sydney (NS), Tampa, Varadero
Seasonal: Abbotsford, Athens, Budapest (begins June 10, 2016),[62] Curaçao, Edinburgh, Glasgow–International (begins June 13, 2016),[63] Honolulu, Huatulco, La Romana, Lisbon, London–Gatwick (begins May 19, 2016),[64] Manchester (UK), Prague (begins May 29, 2016),[62] St. Maarten, San José del Cabo, St. Kitts, Venice–Marco Polo, Warsaw–Chopin (begins June 16, 2016)[65]
Air France Paris–Charles de Gaulle 3
Air Transat Cancún, Cayo Coco/Cayo Guillermo, Fort Lauderdale, Glasgow–International, Holguin, Lisbon, London–Gatwick, Manchester (UK), Montego Bay, Montréal–Trudeau, Orlando, Porto, Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Samaná, Santa Clara, Varadero
Seasonal: Amsterdam, Athens, Barcelona, Birmingham (UK), Budapest, Camaguey, Cayo Largo, Cozumel, Curaçao (begins December 20, 2015),[66] Dublin, Faro, Huatulco, Lamezia Terme, La Romana (begins December 18, 2015), Las Vegas, Liberia (CR), Madrid, Marseille, Nice (begins May 23, 2016),[67] Panama City, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Pisa (begins June 12, 2016),[68] Prague, Puerto Vallarta, Rio Hato, Roatan, Rome–Fiumicino, Saint Lucia–Hewanorra, Saint Maarten, San José (CR), San Jose del Cabo, Venice–Marco Polo, Zagreb (begins June 14, 2016)[69]
Alitalia Rome–Fiumicino 3
American Airlines Dallas/Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Miami 3
American Eagle Charlotte, Chicago–O'Hare, New York–JFK, New York–LaGuardia, Philadelphia, Washington–National 3
Austrian Airlines Vienna 1
Avianca Costa Rica San Salvador 1
British Airways London–Heathrow 3
Caribbean Airlines Kingston–Norman Manley, Port of Spain 3
Cathay Pacific Hong Kong 3
China Eastern Airlines Shanghai–Pudong 3
Condor Seasonal: Frankfurt 3
Copa Airlines Panama City 1
Cubana de Aviación Camaguey, Cayo Largo, Cienfuegos, Havana, Holguin, Santiago de Cuba, Varadero, Santa Clara 3
Delta Air Lines Atlanta
Seasonal: Detroit
Delta Connection Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York–JFK 3
EgyptAir Cairo 1
El Al Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion 3
Emirates Dubai–International 1
Ethiopian Airlines Addis Ababaa 1
Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi 1
EVA Air Taipei–Taoyuan 1
Finnair Seasonal: Helsinki 3
Fly Jamaica Airways Georgetown–Cheddi Jagan, Kingston–Norman Manley 3
Hainan Airlines Beijing–Capital 3
Icelandair Reykjavík–Keflavík 3
Jet Airways Brussels, Delhi 1
KLM Amsterdam 3
Korean Air Seoul–Incheon 3
LOT Polish Airlines Warsaw–Chopin 1
Lufthansa Frankfurt
Seasonal: Munich
Pakistan International Airlines Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore 3
Philippine Airlines Manilab 3
SATA International Lisbon, Ponta Delgada, Porto
Seasonal: Terceira
Saudia Jeddah, Riyadh 3
Sunwing Airlines Cancún, Cayo Coco/Cayo Guillermo, Freeport, Grenada, Halifax, Holguin, Las Vegas, Mazatlan, Montego Bay, Orlando, Panama City, Port of Spain, Puerto Plata, Puerto Vallarta, Punta Cana, Río Hato, Saint Lucia–Hewanorra, San José del Cabo, Santa Clara, Varadero
Seasonal: Aruba, Belize City, Camaguey, Cienfuegos, Cozumel, Curaçao, Fort Lauderdale, Gander, Huatulco, La Romana, Liberia (CR), Manzanillo, Nassau, Porto, Roatán, San Juan, St. Maarten, St. Petersburg/Clearwater, San José (CR), Santiago de Cuba, Stephenville, Vancouver
TAM Airlines New York–JFK, São Paulo–Guarulhos 3
Turkish Airlines Istanbul–Atatürk 1
United Airlines Chicago–O'Hare 1
United Express Chicago–O'Hare, Denver, Houston–Intercontinental, Newark, Washington–Dulles 1
WestJet Antigua, Aruba, Barbados, Bermuda, Calgary, Cancún, Cayo Coco/Cayo Guillermo, Charlottetown, Deer Lake, Edmonton, Fort Lauderdale, Fort McMurray, Fort Myers, Grand Cayman, Halifax, Kelowna, Kingston–Norman Manley, Las Vegas, Liberia (CR), Moncton, Montego Bay, Montréal–Trudeau, Nassau, New York–LaGuardia, Orlando, Ottawa, Phoenix, Port of Spain, Providenciales, Puerto Plata, Puerto Vallarta, Punta Cana, Québec City, Regina, San Juan, Santa Clara, St. John's (NL), Saint Lucia–Hewanorra, St. Maarten, Samaná, Saskatoon, Tampa, Vancouver, Varadero, Winnipeg
Seasonal: Cozumel, Curaçao, Dublin, Gander, Glasgow–International, Holguin, Huatulco (begins December 13, 2015),[70] La Romana, London–Gatwick (begins May 6, 2016),[71] Mérida (begins December 15, 2015), Miami, Myrtle Beach, Palm Springs, San José (CR) (begins December 15, 2015), San José del Cabo (begins 19 December 2015),[72] Sarasota (begins December 18, 2015),[70] Sydney (NS), Victoria, West Palm Beach (begins December 11, 2015),[70]
WestJet Encore Boston (begins March 21, 2016), Fredericton, London (ON) (begins March 15, 2016), Montréal–Trudeau, Ottawa, Québec City, Thunder Bay 3
WOW air Reykjavík–Keflavík (begins May 20, 2016)[73] 3
  • ^a : Ethiopian Airlines' flight from Addis Ababa to Toronto includes a technical stop at Dublin. Ethiopian Airlines does not have fifth freedom rights to transport passengers solely between Dublin and Toronto, and thus only carries passengers between Addis Ababa and Toronto.[74] Ethiopian Airlines' flight from Toronto to Addis Ababa is nonstop.
  • ^b : Philippine Airlines flights to/from Manila stop in Vancouver. However, Philippine Airlines does not have eighth freedom rights to transport passengers solely between Toronto and Vancouver, and thus only carries passengers traveling between Toronto and Manila.

Cargo airlines and destinations[edit]

Airline Destination Cargo Center
Cathay Pacific Cargo Anchorage, Hong Kong, New York–JFK VISTA
FedEx Express Indianapolis, Memphis, Minneapolis/St. Paul FedEx
FedEx Express
operated by Morningstar Air Express
Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal–Mirabel, North Bay, Sault Ste. Marie (ON), Sudbury, Timmins, Vancouver, Winnipeg FedEx
KF Cargo Brussels, Moncton, Calgary, Vancouver Cargo West
Korean Air Cargo Anchorage, Seoul–Incheon Cargo West
Lufthansa Cargo Frankfurt, Houston VISTA
UPS Airlines Louisville VISTA


Cargo operations[edit]

Pearson operates two primary cargo facilities. The Cargo West Facilities are located between runways 15L/33R and 15R/33L, and the Cargo Area 5 or VISTA Cargo Centers Incorporated are located north of Terminal 3. A third facility dedicated to FedEx operations occupies facilities at the north side of the airport near runway 05/23.[75]

Tenants using the Cargo West Facilities
American Airlines Canada Border Services Agency
CAS Canada Inc. Korean Air Cargo
WestJet Air Supply Worldwide Flight Services
Tenants using the Cargo Area 5/VISTA Cargo Center[76]
Air Canada Cargo ACE Freight AeroLogic Air France Cargo Airline Cargo Sales Air-Ship International Air Time Express Alitalia All Trade Shipping American Aviation Parts & Service Airport Terminal Services
Austrian Airlines Canada Border Services Agency Canada Post Cargo Sales Resources Cargo Zone CAS Cargo and Travel Cathay Pacific Delta Air Lines DHL Express El Al EVA Air
Excel Cargo Exp-Air Cargo Freight Systems Incorporated Air India Handlex Incorporated International Cargo International Fastline Forwarding Japan Airlines KLM Cargo LAN Chile LOT Polish Airlines
Lufthansa Cargo Mayfield Cargo Finnair Onward Transportation Orbit Brokers SATA Cargo Pine Tree Express Platinum Air Cargo Prestige International Secure Maple Freight Swiss International Airlines
Swissport Turkish Airlines Cargo TBI U Freight International UPS Airlines VCC Cargo Services
Tenants using the cargo area north of the aviation facilities
Shell Aerocentre Hangars and Flight Lounge All Cargo Airlines Ltd.


Annual traffic[edit]

Annual passenger traffic (enplaned + deplaned) at Toronto Pearson Airport, 2003 thru 2014 [77] [78]
Year Passengers Year Passengers
2008 32,334,831 2014 38,571,961
2007 31,446,199 2013 36,107,306
2006 30,794,581 2012 34,911,850
2005 29,914,750 2011 33,435,277
2004 28,615,981 2010 31,936,098
2003 24,739,312 2009 30,368,339


Motor vehicle[edit]

An Emirates Airbus A380 passing over the Petro-Canada location on Airport Road (March 2014)

The airport is accessible from Highway 427 (just north of the Highway 401) or from Highway 409, a spur off Highway 401 that leads directly into the airport. Airport Road to the north and Dixon Road to the east both provide local access to the airport.[79]

Restricted road access from Courtney Park Drive and Britannia Road to the west of the airport are for authorized vehicles only. Various roads to the cargo area to the north are also restricted. Other roads that travel along the airport grounds and runways are blocked off by fencing and gates. When drivers pick up or drop off guests at Toronto Pearson, they are permitted to stop momentarily outside the Arrivals and Departure areas at both terminals.

Public transit[edit]

A UP Express train approaches Pearson Station.

Rail and bus services that connect Toronto and the surrounding region to Pearson Airport include the Union Pearson Express (express rail link to downtown), Toronto Transit Commission (public transit), GO Transit (public regional transit), MiWay (public transit), Brampton Transit (public transit) and Can-ar Coach Service (private airport coach service):[80]

Route Destination Service Times Terminals Served Schedule
Union Pearson Express
Union Pearson Express Express rail service to Union Station with stops at Weston and Bloor All-day Terminal 1. Same-platform transfer to LINK Train for Terminal 3 [81]
Toronto Transit Commission (TTC)
192 Airport Rocket Express service to Kipling Station on the TTC - Line 2 - Bloor-Danforth line.svg Bloor–Danforth Subway Line All-day Terminals 1 and 3 [82]
52A Lawrence West Local service serving Dixon Road and Lawrence Avenue to Lawrence and Lawrence West stations on the TTC - Line 1 - Yonge-University-Spadina line.svg Yonge–University Subway Line All-day Terminals 1 and 3 [83]
300A Bloor-Danforth Runs express from the airport to Burnhamthorpe Road at Highway 427, then local service along Bloor Street and Danforth Avenue to Warden Avenue Overnight only

(approximately 2:00 a.m.–6:00 a.m. daily)

Terminals 1 and 3 [84]
307 Eglinton West Local service along Eglinton Avenue to Yonge Street Overnight only

(approximately 2:00 a.m.–6:00 a.m. daily)

Terminals 1 and 3 [85]
GO Transit
34 Pearson Airport-North York Express service to Finch and Yorkdale TTC subway stations on the TTC - Line 1 - Yonge-University-Spadina line.svg Yonge–University Subway Line All-day Terminal 1 [86]
40 Hamilton-Richmond Hill Express service to:

Eastbound: Richmond Hill Centre bus terminal. Westbound: Square One Bus Terminal and Hamilton GO Centre

All-day Terminal 1 [86]
7 Airport Local service to:

Southbound: Square One. Northbound: Westwood Mall.

All-day Terminal 1 [87]
107 Malton Express Express service to:

Southbound: Square One. Northbound: Westwood Mall and Humber College North Campus.

Mondays to Saturdays Viscount LINK Station [87]
24 Northwest Local service to:

Southbound: Skymark Hub. Northbound: Westwood Mall.

Rush hour Viscount LINK Station [87]
57 Courtneypark Local service from the airport's Infield Cargo area to:

Northbound: Meadowvale Town Centre

Southbound: Islington Station on the TTC - Line 2 - Bloor-Danforth line.svg Bloor–Danforth Subway Line

Rush hour None [87]
59 Infield Local service from Westwood Mall to the airport's Infield Cargo area One trip daily None [87]
Brampton Transit
115 Airport Express Semi-express service to Bramalea bus terminal All-day Terminal 1 [88]
Can-ar Coach Service
Operates a once-a-day coach service to Port Elgin, Ontario, serving communities in Dufferin, Grey, and Bruce counties. [89]

Taxis, limousines, and shuttle vehicles[edit]

Toronto Pearson International Airport has pick-up locations for taxis, limousines, out-of-town bus, and/or even shuttle services, all of which offer transportation to downtown Toronto, cities throughout Ontario, and into Detroit, Michigan, USA. Taxis are licensed by the City of Mississauga, not from the City of Toronto. Taxis that are licensed in Toronto can deliver to Pearson, but only airport-licensed taxis and limos can pick up at Pearson legally. Rides can also be prearranged through GTA Airport Taxi or GTA Airport Limo at the Airport, providing prompt pick-up outside of the terminal.[90] Pearson Airport Limousine companies use GTAA authorized out-of-town flat rates for pick-ups from Pearson Airport.[91]

Toronto Pearson International Airport supports many out-of-town small bus, van, and shuttle operators, offering transportation from the airport to cities, towns, and villages throughout Southern Ontario. Some operators offer connections to other airports in Ontario (John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport in Hamilton and London International Airport in London) or in the United States (Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport in Detroit, Michigan and Buffalo Niagara International Airport in Buffalo, New York).[92] Megabus operators a shuttle service to Pearson from Kingston, Ontario with stops at Queen's University, Belleville and Port Hope.

Future transit connections[edit]

The Eglinton Crosstown light rail line was originally projected to connect Pearson to Scarborough by 2018 as part of the Transit City plan.[93] However, when the four Transit City lines were found to be $2.4 billion over their funding envelope in January 2010, parts of the network were deferred, including the western section of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT.[94]

One of the routes in GO Transit's proposed Highway 407 BRT system would reach the airport. As a precursor, GO as of June 2013 operates the 40 Airport Express route between Richmond Hill Centre Terminal and Pearson Airport. This route formerly served Mississauga City Centre, but was shortened due to MiWay's launch of its own Airport Express route. A bus rapid transit route is planned to use the Mississauga Transitway, which is under construction. Mississauga Transit's 107 Malton Express has been in service since March 2010, connecting Mississauga City Centre, Malton, and Pearson Airport via the LINK Train's Viscount Station during peak hours only. After the completion of the transitway in late 2013, travel times between these destinations would be cut down to 19 minutes (compared to 7 Airport's 41 minutes and to the current 107's 29 minutes). Also, an all-day, all-week connection between the two destinations would be established.[95]

Incidents and accidents[edit]

  • On October 3, 1959, Vickers Viscount CF-TGY of Trans-Canada Air Lines was written off when it landed short of the runway.[96] No fatalities among the 38 on board.
  • On June 13, 1964, Vickers Viscount CF-THT of Air Canada was damaged beyond economical repair when it crash-landed after the failure of two engines on approach.[97]
  • The airport's deadliest accident occurred on July 5, 1970, when Air Canada Flight 621, a DC-8 jet, flew on a Montreal–Toronto–Los Angeles route. The pilots inadvertently deployed spoilers before the plane attempted landing, forcing the pilots to abort landing and takeoff. Damage to the aircraft that was caused during the failed landing attempt caused the plane to break up in the air during the go-around, killing all 100 passengers and nine crew members on board when it crashed into a field southeast of Brampton. Controversy remains over the cleanup effort following the crash, as both plane wreckage debris and human remains from the crash are still found on the site.[98]
  • On August 30, 1970, Douglas C-47 CF-JRY of D G Harris Productions was damaged beyond economic repair in a storm.[99]
  • On June 26, 1978, Air Canada Flight 189 to Winnipeg overran the runway during an aborted takeoff, and crashed into the Etobicoke Creek ravine. Two of the 107 passengers on board the DC-9 were killed.
  • On June 22, 1983, Douglas C-47A C-GUBT of Skycraft Air Transport crashed on takeoff roll at Toronto International Airport while on an international cargo flight from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport, Ohio. Both of the crew members were killed.[100]
  • On June 23, 1985, failure of adequate baggage screening systems at Toronto Pearson airport allowed a suitcase bomb to get loaded onto the Boeing 747-237B operating as Air India Flight 181 in Toronto. The bomb later brought down the plane above the Atlantic Ocean, killing everyone on board. Note: This plane made a stop over at Montreal Mirabel Airport to pick up more passengers, and had its flight re-designated as Flight 182 upon leaving Montreal en route to both London-Heathrow and New Delhi (without further baggage inspection).
  • On August 2, 2005, Air France Flight 358, an Airbus A340-300 (registration F-GLZQ) inbound from Paris, landed on runway 24L during a severe thunderstorm, failed to stop, and ran off of the runway into the Etobicoke Creek ravine. The rear third of the plane burst into flames, eventually engulfing the whole plane except the cockpit and wings. There were 12 serious injuries, but no fatalities. The investigation predominantly blamed pilot error when faced with the severe weather conditions.

In popular culture[edit]

  • The music videos for "You and I" by Celine Dion and "Jet Lag" by Simple Plan were filmed at the airport.
  • The song "YYZ" by Canadian rock band Rush is named after the airport's IATA identification code. The song is meant to be a musical representation of the airport, and opens with "YYZ" rendered in Morse code.

See also[edit]


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External links[edit]