BHTA Chair: Intervention needed for greater regional airlift capacity

BHTA Chair: Intervention needed for greater regional airlift capacity
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The head of the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association wants to see more air traffic in the Caribbean.

Concerns regarding regional travel were raised by BHTA chairman, Renèe Coppin during a press briefing on Thursday.

Coppin lauded regional airliner InterCaribbean on its recent announcement that flights to Barbados will double in the coming months. However, she maintained that more work needs to be done to “restore Caribbean airlift” to pre-pandemic levels.

“Having lost over 300,000 seats between 2022 and 2019 we were pleased to see the recent announcement by InterCaribbean of a doubling of flights to Barbados over the coming months.  We recognise that it will require many more similar types of interventions, combined with significant creativity and investment, to restore Caribbean airlift to pre-COVID levels.”

While reporting a positive winter season, Coppin noted that the “strong airlift” out of the United Kingdom – inclusive of charter flights – contributed significantly to the “relatively high” arrivals.

The improvement from January to April 2023 represents 16,735 additional seats for the first four months of this year over the same period in 2019.  While not as robust and still not back to 2019 levels, airlift out of Canada has also improved for the period January to April 2023 registering 6, 491 more seats than 2022,” the BHTA chair disclosed.

“European airlift was at its best in five years in 2022 but has dipped this year while US airlift is still struggling to recover as is that from the Caribbean,” she continued.

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  • PublishedFebruary 18, 2023

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