Steps being taken to deal with absence of Norwegian Airlines says Piper

Norwegian Airlines schedule to the Caribbean will end on March 31, 2019

Director of Tourism and CEO of Discover Dominica Authority (DDA), Colin Piper has said that efforts are being made to replace the capacity that will be lost from Norwegian Air’s departure from the Caribbean next season.

According to an article on USA Today, the European low-cost airline will not return to the Caribbean once its current seasonal service comes to an end this spring.

Norwegian offers dozens of trans-Atlantic routes to Europe but the carrier also flies several routes from the USA and Canada to the French Caribbean islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe.

“Certainly Dominica benefited from Norwegian service as people travel from the US and connected into Dominica via Ferry and also via Air Antilles,” Piper said. “As you may recall, Dominica through the DDA Air Access Technical Committee was successful in getting Air Antilles to add two additional flights for this season specifically to connect with Norwegian as well as to connect with up to five (5) other carriers coming in from Europe and France in particular.”

Piper revealed that talks have already been held with management of both airports in Martinique and Guadeloupe.

He said a delegation from Guadeloupe and Martinique is at a Routes Conference in Montreal and basically, have the assurance of DDA’s support as they seek to replace the capacity that will be lost from Norwegian next season.

USA Today reported that the Caribbean service operates during Norwegian’s winter schedule, but the carrier said these routes are being discontinued as part of cost-cutting effort. The airline has moved to trim expenses and slow expanses after hitting a financial rough patch.

The carrier’s current schedule to the islands will end as planned on March 31, but will not return.

Norwegian currently flies to both Martinique and Guadeloupe from two U.S. cities (New York JFK and Fort Lauderdale, Florida) and from one in Canada (Montreal).

“Both Guadeloupe and Martinique are hidden gems in the Caribbean and great tourist destinations,” Lindström said. “We truly hope a US-based carrier will be able to step in and fill the gap as we have significantly increased the awareness of these two wonderful islands.”

Additionally, Norwegian also offers nonstop routes from the two French Caribbean islands to Cayenne in the South American territory of French Guiana. Norwegian’s service to that territory also will end.

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30 Comments

  1. Gouvelma
    February 15, 2019

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Just like the steps that were taken to deal with the departure of Ross? I guess by then skerritt’s international airport using the container as the terminal will be complete. Failure is printed in the palm of this labor government. Anything they are involved in even if they are not the sole beneficiaries fail. Have they found the replacement for Ross? Will their suit against Ross solve Dominica’s problems? No. Most will however be solved when they debit office. They have no clue as to what Dominica needs now.

  2. ATKINSON
    February 15, 2019

    Dam so there goes the plan of bringing down DLP votes on norwegian air, but can’t we just use the CBI money and buy about 10 air bus or 747’s to bring in tourist to DA :mrgreen:

  3. Cdr. Bud Slabbaert
    February 15, 2019

    Norwegian would not come to Dominica even if it had a larger airport. They have withdrawn from several routes. The airline has grown too fast. It is experiencing financial problems. The latter is an issue that repeats itself often in the airline industry. There is one Caribbean nation that’s always doing well and is a magnet to draw passengers and airlines; it’s the Dominican Republic. Not because they have 3 major international airports and 10 additional airports. It is because of what they have to offer to tourists that counts. Yes, 67% of their tourists arrive via one international airport: Punta Cana. It handles 7,3 million passengers annually on 21,4468 flights coming from 90 airports of 28 countries. Just google up what Punta Cana has to offer and you may conclude what tourists are looking for and what most expect to get on a vacation that they put some savings money for aside for every month. Yes tourists have to work to be able to go on vacation and thus have expectations.

  4. LPV
    February 15, 2019

    So far I have no issues connecting through St Lucia.

  5. Anthony P. Ismael Minister of Free Pampers
    February 15, 2019

    The definition of insanity is “Engaging in the same behavior over and over again, while expecting a different result.” When will Colin, and Skerrit understand that we must control our own destiny to develop as an island-nation? When? We need direct flights into and out of Dominica period!

  6. Waiting for the Air Access
    February 15, 2019

    I shall not hold my breath but I cannot wait for the time when we will be proactive instead of reactive.

  7. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    February 14, 2019

    The opinions express here by Colin is even more ignorant than when he said he was going to Nevis to look for help to get more Aircraft to bring tourist and passengers to Dominica. Note Nevis is a dependency of St. Kitts, there are no airlines or flights originating Nevis going anywhere, Even St. Kitts with an International Airport does not have any airlines originating there.

    Here again he’s running off his mouth talking nonsense: What does Norwegian pulling out of some place in the Caribbean have to do with Dominica?

    Norwegian Aircraft cannot touch down in Dominica, never touched in Dominica; we do not have an International Airport to accommodate Norwegian; so what’s the point of running off your mouth! The man is running off his mouth as if there are direct flight from Norway to Dominica.

    If you all were not so backward there would be an International Airport in Dominica, hence Norwegian might be flying direct to Dominica, their departure then might have some effect on…

  8. Faceup
    February 14, 2019

    No probs if you don’t know now you know. Air Caraibe is taking the spot. starting April 1st or there about at low cost..

  9. max
    February 14, 2019

    me self find some people too naive, which steps. Steps…smh…must be piper big step en mitang woosoo

  10. Cdr. Bud Slabbaert
    February 14, 2019

    “Not cost effective” should be interpreted as not profitable. Not profitable in most cases means that the demand is low. So, if low cost carriers that are known for low attractive air fares, cannot attract enough passengers, why would other international airline care to step in? Is a bigger airport crucial? Passenger demand is crucial. All major airlines have route analysts and planners who are aware of what destinations (not airports) are lucrative. Decisions are made accordingly.
    As for the Routes Americas Conference that is currently held in Canada. The conference is attended by 300 airports and 50 tourism authorities and they all hope to attract airlines to come to their destination. That tells one something about the magnitude of competition and accordingly the need to stand out.

    • Shaka Zulu
      February 14, 2019

      These idiots dont see that. We operate on wishful thinking in the carribbean. There has to be demand. We cannot create demand among 40 million people which would be more than enough to sustain liat. The Caribbean need a creative, intelectual, technological and commonsense awakening. All the industrial nation trying to move as one gain strength while we there with our microscopic approach to progress. We share the same people, food culture music water everything but exist like Robison Crusoe. Every island dont need an international airport if we were behaving as one. Tourist come for the experience and if the attraction is strong enough they will find thier way. There lots of ways to increase volume but a lot has to change in mode of governance and mindset and thet is a Herculean task.

    • Anthony P. Ismael Minister of Free Pampers
      February 15, 2019

      Airbus will soon discontinue manufacturing its A380 aircraft as it’s no longer cost effective to operate on long haul routes. These decisions about destination and types of aircraft are cyclical in nature. That being said, Dominica is in a disastrous position. The location of our current airport leaves us out in the cold. If we had the same runway length situated differently, we could attract true night landing by US registered aircraft. That will never happen with the current location of Melville Hall. As an island-nation, we need to end vicarious trauma and chart a pragmatic way forward.

    • GOAT
      February 15, 2019

      Why doesn’t Dominica invest in its own airlines to connect to Martinique ,Barbados Guadeloupe or request more flights from aircaraibe and air Antilles. Secondly why LIAT doesn’t fly to Miami with their ATR 72 or with boeing 737from PR..

  11. Bring back the kidnapped Dominican parrots
    February 14, 2019

    Nothing to worry about there will soon be 747 and 757 aircraft landing at Skerrits new international airport direct from Florida.

    • Anon
      February 14, 2019

      More like Emirates A380s from Dubai. Bringing all the rich emirati Dominicans to stay at the many fine 5 star resorts.

  12. Maybe
    February 14, 2019

    Quick quack where is the international airport we being like cacarats St Kitts have an international airport and see the size of the island compare to da dlp must go time for a change

  13. Shaka Zulu
    February 14, 2019

    I will say again. The carribbean region has over 40 million people. We mostly african descendants with indigenous mix and European influence.ther is no reason the Caribbean cannot be a major economic hub which increases travel. Carribbean leaders need more than ever to set common goals for tourism, technology, industry, environment education. This individualism is backwards ever forward never. Wages need to grow, employment rates need to increase and the ability to own create and grow wealth must exist. Where is the Caribbean owned hotel chain where teachers police nurses etc can buy shares and eran a living instead of just waiting for SS. There is so much to talk about but to do here is futile. We need new vision and is time People demand. All those who know better and sit silent are a failure to our generation and future generations. True change and progress can only come drom within and the Caribbean been failing because we never learned to march together.

    • Ibo France
      February 14, 2019

      Nuff respect Shaka. The Caribbean is bedeviled with high unemployment, high indebtedness, high crime rates and a mammoth food import bill. One of the reasons we are in such a predicament, we are consumers of goods instead of producers of goods. Most of the Caribbean countries are blessed with water aplenty, arable soil and an abundance of sunshine throughout the year. Agriculture,, agro-processing, light manufacturing, technologiy, service industries should be flourishing. Our political leaders have failed us deplorably. Corruption, greed and selfishness are deeply entrenched in their style of governance. They become looters on an industrial scale. They (leaders) line their pockets, fatten themselves while the masses become malnourished and emaciated. Dominica is a flawless model.

    • Shaka Zulu
      February 14, 2019

      The report about says both Martinique and Guadeloupe are hidden gems in the Caribbean and great tourist destination. We are smack in the middle so there is not much difference in natural resources. As a matter of fact we share the same culture, food, music, history, geology etc. The only difference is these two island are departments of an industrial country and therefore have acess to more finance to make thier tourism product more appealing, higher wages and a direct relationship to the Europe market. We already have thousands of Dominicans and thier generation living in Guadeloupe so there is no reason for us to have such geopolitical barriers. Improve life for the millions leaving within the Caribbean can lead to increase inter islad travel. We need to start by looking at the 40 plus million in the Caribbean and get at least 15 million to travel interi sland every year for commerce, and leisure. The folks from NA and Europe will just be icing on cake. To many stupid barriers.

    • Anthony P. Ismael Minister of Free Pampers
      February 15, 2019

      You made some valid points Shaka, however an absence in leadership will continue to perpetuate the scenarios that you described. If we had capable leadership in the tourism, architecture, development and political arena, someone would conduct a study and incorporate items into our tourism product that do not exist elsewhere within the Caribbean. This would enable us to take the lead and begin to attract tourist within the region.

  14. Odin
    February 14, 2019

    Too bad. I often travel on Norwegian. Great airline for the region.

  15. I wont visit again till its fixed
    February 14, 2019

    Dominica needs to do something about access to the country. Most times people who travel from the U.S have to overnight in order to get to Dominica. THIS IS UNACCEPTABLE. Its already burdensome to have to transfer planes but as Dominicans we are used to this and accept it as part of the challenge for going home. However to additionally have to overnight is an undue burden to the traveler. Most Dominicans I know do not mind the burden and would walk through fire in order to go home but this should not be an acceptable reason not to change things. I talk to many friends and colleagues who are intrigued by Dominica and would love to visit but once they see the cost of the ticket and the amount of time it takes to get there, they decide against the visit and go to some nearby island. My solutions for Dominica are to build an international airport but while it is in construction we should work with a major airline to bring connecting flights to a nearby island.

    • Anthony P. Ismael Minister of Free Pampers
      February 15, 2019

      My solution to Dominica is to build an airport in a new location, where the runway can be expanded over time, as the demand grows. If travelers can arrive at their destination within the same day, we would be a destination that they choose, despite changing planes. This would allow more flights to come daily, including at night. Remember that weather sometimes lead to cancellation. If we have a 24-hour airport, flights would come in an out round the clock. The roads leading to and from that said airport must also be designed to match more robust traveling at night as well. This means illumination at night, removal of steep gradients, guard rails, road signs, more gas stations, police patrols etc. An entire system rebuild is required to accomplish the goals that you outlined.

  16. jamie
    February 14, 2019

    Piper you guys are a joke,continue fooling the people,how many people can you guys really service daily through the crap you all call airports.

  17. RandyX
    February 14, 2019

    Ok, Piper said that efforts are being made to replace the capacity that will be lost from Norwegian Air’s departure from the Caribbean next season. Bearing in mind that we are in the Silly Season (election time) right now, expect Skerrit to come on to DBS to advise us that the Government of Dominica is in ‘negotiations’ with Boeing to purchase either a 737-800 or better even a 787 Dreamliner to make up for that shortfall. Suffice to say these negotiations will still be ongoing after the elections in 2024/25, that is if Dominica will still hold general elections then. Dominica is not only climate resilient but resilient against any adversity that’s thrown at it in general. Well, mainly during election time and in talk only.
    My god Piper, aren’t you ashamed of yourself?!

  18. Bee
    February 14, 2019

    :lol: :lol: :lol: Boy this people not easy. First it was Tongue bragging about the new direct flight “with connections” now Piper talking about alternatives…… LIAT 16 seater maybe? Don’t ever put in an international airport and continue to be at the mercy of others!
    But I do suspect in the next few months we will see ground breaking for airport to continue to fool the gullible DLP supporters who not ready or willing to loose their handouts.

    • Stealth Critique
      February 14, 2019

      You’re still at the mercy of others, international airport or not.

  19. Ibo France
    February 14, 2019

    Build your own international airport. In the day of modernity, direct flights are much preferred to be languishing in transit. Dominica is light years behind in infrastural development in comparison to her neighbours. How forlorn!

    • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
      February 15, 2019

      Ibo, all these people do is talk; Dominicans in government, and people like that guy talking, they all have the answers to solve every issue in the universe except the problems and issues in Dominica.

      We have experts on everything, we know how to resolve world travel issues, and what the Caribbean will loose due to the departure of an Air Line which does not have any connection to Dominica.

      The time he took to run off his mouth talking nonsense; if he is in tourism; and if he has any form of intelligence he should know by Dominica not having an International Airport that is an obstacle in the way of developing a viable tourist industry in the country!

      Everyday passport money are given away to build “so called hotels.” Some will never get completed, and if two or three get completed they will remain empty. No reputable hotel operator will invest in hotels Dominica where an International Airport is none existent.

      Sandals came and left early 1970’s 

  20. Wb
    February 14, 2019

    Smmfh more travel woes

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