Virgin announces end to London-Kingston flights
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Thursday June 9, 2011 – Virgin Atlantic has announced that it will stop flying to Kingston next year, reportedly citing the impending unsustainability of the route.
The last London-Kingston flight will be on April 16, 2012.
The rising cost of fuel and Air Jamaica’s planned re-launch of a London to Kingston service were among the factors the airline considered in reaching its decision.
Virgin will, however, continue its London to Montego Bay service.
Speaking from New York where he is attending the Caribbean Tourism Organisation (CTO) annual tourism week, Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett said he would be meeting with Virgin Atlantic officials on the matter. But he told the media the pull out was possibly a result of the “softness” of the route.
"In our global analysis of our markets around the world, we have noticed a softening such as in the UK and other advanced economies," he told the Jamaica Gleaner, also telling another newspaper, the Jamaica Observer, that “there has been a reduction in the (UK) market to the Caribbean by some 30-odd percent”.
“Therefore, our successful venture into South America to bring some 10,000 to 12,000 seats ahead of March next year is our strategic response to what is happening in the market,” he added in his interview with the Gleaner.
The CTO event Bartlett is attending will run until Saturday.
Click here to receive free news bulletins via email from Caribbean360. ( )