REDjet seeking Trini approval
Reports out of Trinidad and Tobago are that the carrier’s application is now being considered and a decision may not be ready by the airline’s May 8 start date.
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, Thursday April 21, 2011 – While REDjet’s management continues to remain tightlipped on whether it has the relevant permission to operate flights in Trinidad and Tobago, word out of the twin-island republic is that the airline submitted an application seeking permission just two days ago.
And according to Director General of the Trinidad and Tobago Civil Aviation Authority (TTCAA), Ramesh Lutchmedial, it’s unlikely that REDjet will be able to start flying there on May 8, as has been advertised for the past week and a half, given the amount of work the TTCAA has to do to determine whether the airline should get approval.
Lutchmedial told the Newsday newspaper that the Barbados-based carrier on Tuesday formally applied for a Foreign Air Operator Operations Specifications in accordance with the Civil Aviation (NO10) Foreign Operator) Regulations, 2004.
“The application is being evaluated,” he told the newspaper, explaining that REDjet’s compliance with safety and security standards has to be reviewed before a decision is made.
“It may require additional information. Once this is done and all our investigations and review are complete we will make a recommendation to the Minister of Works and Transport (Jack Warner).”
Earlier this week, the TTCAA wrote to REDjet instructing it to immediately stop advertising and booking flights to and from Trinidad. However, the company’s website has not pulled either.
REDjet has also so far refused to respond to questions raised since Warner said the airline had not received any approval to fly to and from Trinidad.
“We have no comment in response to any statements made by officials of any country,” it posted as a response to a question on its Facebook page yesterday.
It has repeatedly posted that it has the required regulatory approval from the Air Transport Authority in Barbados under the Air Services Agreement between Trinidad and Tobago to conduct current commercial activities, including the advertising and booking of routes and fares.
REDjet also noted that it has not yet accepted payment for any bookings, in keeping with regulatory requirements.
The airline is offering fares from US$9.99 one-way, excluding government taxes and charges, between Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica, Guyana and Barbados.
REDjet creates competition for Trinidad and Tobago’s national carrier, Caribbean Airlines, and regional airline LIAT.
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