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The Public Ineffectual

For entertainment purposes only.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

Why "Y" for Canadian Airport Codes?

Judging from the state of this web page, no one really knows why all our airport codes start with Y. Montreal is YUL, Vancouver is YVR and Edmonton is YEG.

Chime in anytime, MD.

7 Comments:

At 12:22 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

My understanding is that originally Canada used 2 letter identifiers to identify weather reporting stations. Those 2 letter codes then had either "Y" or "W" added in front of them. Y meant they were co-located with an airport. Or "Y"es there is an airport there too. Or it is a weather station "W"ithout and airport for those that had the W in front. They changed the last letter to "X" if the code was already in use by another city. And changed it to "Z" if the code was already in use by a U.S. airport. There is a bit of more general history on how Canada reserved the "Y" as a political landgrab as codes were being handed out worldwide too: http://skygod.com/asstd/abt.html

Cheers!

 
At 2:31 PM, Blogger cow said...

hmm if you can find an explanation to the K or W for radio ;) I would be happy too. It's 7 years I'm looking for the answer.

 
At 2:33 PM, Blogger cow said...

Btw it's not only Canada ;)

http://www.world-airport-codes.com/alphabetical/airport-code/y.html

 
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At 7:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They were all originally radio call signs. Vancouver for example CYVR.
They were MF beacons for DF.
The same holds true with the American airports.

 
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