One of the reasons why tourism in Dominica is at a low is because the Caribbean lacks a proper airline.
People tell me they refuse to visit islands in the Caribbean where LIAT flies and I can certainly understand why. In fact, though LIAT was my first Corporate employer, I am very ashamed and disgusted with the service and I have had some very bad experiences with the Antigua-based airline.
Imagine, I am trying to travel to St. Kitts from Dominica for a meeting and not only is it impossible to find a flight that would take me there in one stop, the flights are so expensive and the service, especially from LIAT is so poor.
How is tourism in the Caribbean ever going to improve when the Caribbean Airline is only focused on servicing Antigua and if one is going to St. St.Kitts in the North, you have to travel to Barbados. What is the logic? Not even God in heaven understands.
I resided in the Bahamas for years and it is so easy and so much cheaper to travel within the Bahamian Islands and also to North America. There are so many options.
I believe the Caribbean Governments should consider taking LIAT off the routes that LIAT says is unprofitable like Dominica and Nevis and allow for a new Airline which would be registered in Anguilla or Trinidad and Tobago, so that they don’t have to deal with Eastern Caribbean Civil Aviation Authority in Antigua.
It is about time we allow the smaller Caribbean islands in the North to have access to proper, punctual air service. Once I thought that the passengers were the reasons for the flight delays, but now I am convinced that it is the Operations Center in Antigua and the pilots.
Well, let’s open the doors. There is a very large airspace in the Caribbean and Trinidad that can give us all the air safety coverage that we need. Thanks to Seaborne and Winair, maybe we can expand their routes within the region and forget Caricom treaties, but provide a service to our locals and visitors.
Our problem right now is not the lack of an International Airport in Dominica. We lack the comfort of knowing that we can move from point A to point B in the lesser Caribbean and get where we are going on time at a reasonable airfare. ECCA keeps stonewalling investors who want to start a new airline because they want to protect LIAT.
Barbados wants to get all the tourist visiting the Caribbean, so they make LIAT divert all its flights via Barbados. Maybe out people need to impress on our leaders to wake up and take action.
The lack of airlift is the lack of visitors to fill our hotel rooms allowing us to see a Return on Our Investment.