St. Maarten to temporarily have three San Juan flights per April 1

POSTED: 03/13/11 8:38 PM

Jet Blue commits to new route

St. Maarten will only have three flights per week to Puerto Rico as of April 1 when American Eagle stops flying the route. Those three services will be provided by Insel Air.
Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transportation and Telecommunication Franklin Meyers tried to keep the Eagle flight, but said he could not agree with the airline’s request for revenue sharing. The island has never entered such an agreement with an airline and it’s clear that they are not ready to start now.
“We’re not going to pay anybody,” he bluntly said Friday.
St Maarten is known in tourism circles for agreeing to joint marketing. The island has maintained that they were willing to take the risk of covering shortfalls if seat quotas are not met.
With that potential agreement now relegated to the past Meyers is moving forward with plans to have Jet Blue provide the island with service from San Juan using an Embraer 100 seater. The airline had originally proposed starting in November. Meyers pressed them in the discussions and they’ve said the earliest they could consider starting is July 1st.
“Today we sent them a letter with the government’s commitments and we are hoping that this flight will be delivered sometime this year. For now we will have Insel Air flying three times per week and hopefully we will get Jet Blue on board as well,” Meyers said.

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