HAVANA, Cuba – Meetings aimed at ending Cuba’s commercial aviation isolation from the US are due to be held next week. US travelers can fly to Cuba at the moment only on charter flights for ‘permitted reasons’, including education, humanitarian efforts and professional research.
Moves to reopen regular commercial flights have been on the cards since the US normalized diplomatic relations. Business groups and industry experts say American carriers are eager to begin regular services, especially from Miami and Los Angeles, which have large Cuban-American populations.
Officials say Cuba’s largest airports are equipped to handle international flights and security measures already meet US standards.
American Airlines, JetBlue Airways and Spirit Airlines, all with large hub operations in Miami and Fort Lauderdale are among carriers tipped to lead the way for any new services, partly to meet demand from business travelers seeking to establish commercial ties with Cuba.