HummingBird Air to begin commercial flights

The new aircraft from HummingBird Air
The new aircraft from HummingBird Air

New airline, HummingBird Air, is to begin commercial flights into Dominica this weekend in move that is said will bring relief to visitors to the island.

The airline is an initiative of local hotelier Sam Raphael and will be offering direct flights from the Canefield Airport to the US Virgin Islands. It will also provided services to St. Lucia.

Raphael told DNO that operations will begin into Canefield as the airline has received authorization to land on the island from the Dominica Airport and Sea Port Authority (DASPA).

He said he is now waiting for a license in writing from the authorities to actually seal the deal.

“We have a license for St. Lucia,” he stated. “That we have in writing. But we have applied and the director of the ports (Benoit Bardouille) gave me the go ahead to begin flights.”

Raphael is satisfied with the progress of the airline so far.

“We’ve had a number of delays because of the high levels of regulations required in the aviation industry,” he stated.

The airline will fly into Dominica from both St. Croix and Thomas on Fridays and Sundays and into St Lucia on Saturdays.

“We plan to expand our schedule in the coming weeks and months,” Raphael stated. “We will be expanding destinations, frequency of flights as we move forward.”

Applications for licence have already been filed in St. Kitts and St. Marteen.

The airline has three aircraft, all fifteen seaters. Only one is operational but the other two will be very soon.

They are capable of transporting both passengers and cargo.

“We will be moving things like produce and fish from Dominica for sale, so that should be a big boost to farmers and people who fish,” Raphael said.

He is confident that the HummingBird Air will boost airlift into Dominica.

“There is a new phenomenon in the Caribbean which sees persons, especially from Europe, that want to visit more than one island because of the contrast the islands offer,” he stated. “So we intend to offer packages for people between Martinique and Dominica and St Maarten and these islands to enable them to include Dominica in multi destination stays. This is a growing phenomenon and I think HummingBird Air is going to position Dominica as a leader in the area of multi destination travel.”

Raphael stated that so far the response from the traveling public has been “phenomenon.”

The airline is offering a special of US$350 round trip from Canefield to the USVI just for the month of July, Raphael said.

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53 Comments

  1. January 12, 2015

    :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

  2. Cat
    August 31, 2014

    I’m St. Lucian living on St. Thomas I happen to be a business professional who travels a lot using smaller planes. I would like to share with others that the smaller planes are quite safe and glides in bad weather. I use a 9 seater and when it’s windy it moves while the larger seater can barely move with 20 passengers because of weight!

  3. Shameless
    July 9, 2014

    Great move Sam!! Woooohooooo! Please be upfront with people on your bag fees (no fine prints please). Seaborne is a killer on fees not because of the price but because of the involved in apply these fees to unsuspecting customers. I ask the traveling public to give Hummingbird all the support they can for this is the only way it can grow into something bigger, better and with more reach.

    Hopefully CIT Airways (Skerro’ airline) will learn something from Hummingbird…. :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

    “I AM FOR CHANGE; ARE U?”
    Assertive, NOT Agressive!

  4. lego beast
    July 8, 2014

    very good move mr RAPHAEL i welcome this gesture and wish you the best of luck..so i cud travel to st thomas for the weekend and be back sunday in time for work..am happy

  5. justice
    July 8, 2014

    GREAT NEWS! And good luck! I find the smaller airlines always always have better customer service and because of that I choose to fly on them. My only concern is the one man pilot. It is a lil risky but once God is in control we will take off and land safely.

  6. July 8, 2014

    Seaborne is a killer .When we hear about specials on sea borne this is just a joke find out .just sunday a man was so upset after he paid his money nobody told him about his bags and price .Job well done Hummingbird . Where is the one the PM promised .Let us take what we get ok.

  7. CYRIL LLONGTING
    July 8, 2014

    Congratulations Mr. Sam. This is a small start for bigger things to come. Best of luck and success.

  8. Tweed
    July 8, 2014

    I love patronising home grown efforts but NOT me and Canefield and those little things!

    Canefield rings too many sad memories of planes cannot land because of cross winds and running off the runway.

    When the ATR comes to Melville Hall, I’ll be a full time customer!!!

  9. Dr Fitzroy Armour
    July 8, 2014

    Well done Sam. :)

  10. July 7, 2014

    There are small planes flying from St Thomas to Puerto Rico everyday .There is nothing wrong flying on a small plane , we did it before . We Dominicans like to press our people .Congratulations ! Is it 350 US or EC?

    • budman
      July 8, 2014

      it is clear as day at the end of the article. US$$ can anybody expect to fly anywhere for 350 EC anymore?

    • peter karam
      July 8, 2014

      no no the currency is French francs

  11. nigel
    July 7, 2014

    I am really scared of these small planes. Couldn’t they have gotten something bigger. Two pilot type of aircraft

    • Albert joseph
      July 8, 2014

      wonder if you ever travel at all.if you hungry and you get half a loaf,will you say no,give me a whole loaf? are you normal saying that?

    • anonymous2
      July 8, 2014

      IF it is you time to go, it is your time to go. the size of the plane has nothing to do with it.

  12. Anonymous
    July 7, 2014

    Where does one purchase tickets? Do they have a website?

  13. tsavanne
    July 7, 2014

    My dear friend Sam I’m happy that you have completed this.. that’s great news.. well done.. please bring some dash 8s…. congrats

  14. July 7, 2014

    This is not for me,15 seats that’s crazy,Y not 30 or more seats.Good luck papa and i pray god everyone stay safe.But that bird will not be seeing me.

    • islandflyer
      July 8, 2014

      Generally the reason for the smaller aircraft are (1) economics. It is far cheaper to maintain and operate a smaller aircraft – purchase costs are lower, less staffing (no cabin crew needed), just a simple rating required for engineers….(2) it is easier to sell 15 or 18 seats everyday than it is to sell 30 or 40….(3) much faster turn around time. Remember a plane makes money in the air, not on the ground!

    • justice
      July 8, 2014

      u to copawayzor!!!! Pay your big money and fly American with 100 plus seats then! When they going down ALL of them going down the same way!

    • Anonymous
      July 9, 2014

      The bigger ones with more people drop from the air faster.These can glide, so be educated.

  15. Johnjay
    July 7, 2014

    Good news for us Dominican living overseas. Sam congratulate you on this business but my God so many of us who are living in the diaspora flew on aircraft less than 15 seaters and today they complaining on size.
    We should get out of this Liat only have 2 or 3 flights a week to the U.S.V.I , a saviour came to help us and some of you complaining on size well wait when the supremo say he will build his international airport for you all to come down but I will flight with Hummingbird thats where I started when I left DA.

  16. Oh Yes
    July 7, 2014

    I commend this initiative. All the best Mr. Raphael and Hummingbird Airlines.

  17. Gerimaine
    July 7, 2014

    Sam, Your entrepreneurial spirit continues to abound. We have a need in the Caribbean for expanded carriers and you are attempting to meet that need. Some of us appreciate your commitment to the needs of the many. Congratulations on getting this off the ground! It couldn’t have been easy. And to the Haters, you know they will always exist.

  18. July 7, 2014

    I already scared flying on liat,and now a smaller plane than liat , I guess this airline not for me.I hope things work well for them, and please no one man pilot I had a bad experience I flew on a one man pilot from St. Thomas to Dominica round trip 1997, that was a big risk, the airline no longer operating, I hope it wont happen on this airline even I wont fly on this airline I am concern for those gonna fly on this airline.

  19. hot
    July 7, 2014

    Acquire some Dash 8s or ATRs. Dem 15 seater plane business is old time business.

    At least I hope the intention is to expand to using bigger aircraft instead of remaining content with 15 seater aircraft.

    • budman
      July 8, 2014

      you putting up the money for dash 8 and atr?

  20. July 7, 2014

    I second that

  21. Browne,C (Rastafari)
    July 7, 2014

    That’s fantastic news, someone who acts and don’t just run their mouth. Go Sam, thanks for your initiative and professional services to Dominica, :wink:

  22. Anonymous
    July 7, 2014

    Samuel, I truly wish you well in your new venture. I went to school with you a long time ago in St. Croix. However, I am one customer you will not see on a 15-seater landing in canefield airport. I flew from St. Croix to St. Thomas a few months ago when I was on vacation, and, my stomach was in my mouth the entire flight. If this is the best Dominica has to offer in the year 2014, Dominica is in sad shape!

    • Browne,C (Rastafari)
      July 7, 2014

      Oh, shut your trap…and you are doing what?

      • Anonymous
        July 8, 2014

        Is that the best you can come up with? Go read a book!

    • Anonymous
      July 7, 2014

      Anonymous,
      You must be Jealous.. what have you become or invested in thus far. Cant keep a Good man down! Mr. Raphael, Great move, thanks. We Dominicans appreciates you. Thanks Much, i can see my family more often. Seaborne is a killer, Liat is waist of time and Hummingbird is closer to Roseau, less expense. Thanks Again.

    • July 7, 2014

      Good, that means a seat will be available for me. I have no problem flying on a smaller plane from Canefield and am glad there’s more service being added.

    • hopefull
      July 7, 2014

      To mister anonymous in case you do not know. Air Guadeloupe, Air Martinique, Air Caraib and nature Island Airlines all landed at Canfield Morning and evening for years in the nineties. the only accident was during a training exercise . Sam congrats Sam. well done. we shall patronise my brother it was time we had an alternative to Liat and trust me flying out of cane field is heavenly

  23. Bull Crap
    July 7, 2014

    lets hope it last. I for one would welcome a direct flight to DA from St. Thomas. This Antigua thing is killing me.

  24. UDHREADYET
    July 7, 2014

    Its a good idea but its already been done by Robo many years ago directly form Canefeild to USVI and back, cargo and people. Glad to see a good idea is being duplicated/built upon.

  25. anonymous2
    July 7, 2014

    From the days of the week chosen, Fridays and Sundays, it would seem that they are running their flights on the same days as Coastal air. No times were given as to arrivals or departures though. A direct flight to San Juan would be of great benefit for those who don’t like the long trip to Melville Hall. .

  26. zag
    July 7, 2014

    WELL DONE SAM

  27. Anonymous
    July 7, 2014

    WHAT 350 EC$

  28. Anonymous
    July 7, 2014

    Good move hope the cost is competitive. Who is the agent for tickets. any chances of the SOM SMX route? Get busy Raphael we fed up with LIAT hope you are competitive enough to use you so you can get a bigger plane.

  29. Nacinamod
    July 7, 2014

    That’s really good news to make use of the Canefield Airport. Sam is a progressive business man, and if anybody can pull this off it will be Sam.

    My best wishes for his future success with Hummingbird Air. By the way, how do say hummingbird in patois?

  30. blows
    July 7, 2014

    I speak success and prosperity over this airline, in the name of Jesus.

  31. concerned
    July 7, 2014

    great initiative, i hope the gov’t will provide the necessary support, wish mr.sam all the best and hope this venture is successful so that we would see some larger aircrafts from the company and increase our airlift

  32. grell
    July 7, 2014

    The 350 round trip should stay,liat offers basically the same fare.Got to keep it competitive if its going to survive.

  33. DA Man In the USA
    July 7, 2014

    This is very good news for us who are away. I just wish that our residents use them instead of our past airline: “LEAVE ISLAND ANY TIME”. Most of us who travel home from Europe and North America once in a while have to put up with too much CRAP from the LIAT employees at these airports in Barbados and Antigua.

    • grell
      July 9, 2014

      Am with you on that Antigua is the worst,cant stand that island,i avoid it all the time.

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