ST MAARTEN (September 19, 2008) – Windward Islands International Airways, Ltd. (Winair) will be adding two destinations to its present route structure. The airline, after initial negotiations with the authorities in Antigua, Barbuda and Montserrat, will add Barbuda and once again Montserrat to its list of destinations after a short absenteeism from the Montserrat route. The new routes will become operational on October 1, Winair announced.
Winair managing director Edwin Hodge said he was very proud of how the negotiations were going so far. “It’s a great feeling to add Barbuda on the map and going back into Montserrat,” he said. “With the tremendous emphasis that we put on safety and service, I am confident that the passengers that we will serve with the two new destinations will be relieved to find that Winair is an airline that believes that safety and service are our primary responsibilities, so we welcome the new additions,” he added.
The latest addition to Winair’s routes comes on the heels of Carib Aviation’s announcement that it will be closing its doors September 30. Winair is vying to fill the void that will be left by Carib Aviation’s absence. Hodge also expressed his willingness to address the many concerns that have been emanating from St. Kitts and Nevis regarding the Carib Aviation closure. “I want to assure passengers in Nevis, St. Kitts and Dominica that they should not be bothered with the closure of Carib Aviation, as Winair is willing to fill the void, while we will certainly endeavor to provide service at the highest quality and level, a trait that we are known for, as we seek [to] enhance and continue developing the airline’s level of service and capacity,” he said.
He also confirmed that Winair was currently looking at meeting with the government of St. Kitts and Nevis to address, among other things, the matter of working together in an effort to cushion the exceptionally high fuel and other related costs with which they are faced. Hodge assured that all avenues were being explored in an effort to maintain the St. Kitts and Nevis routes, as with growing operational, fuel and other related cost management might be forced to close those routes. However, with the demise of Carib Aviation, Winair is looking to expand the Nevis and St. Kitts route by introducing daily service between St. Kitts, Nevis and Antigua.
This, he said, is taking he attention of government, as the airline attempts to garner support that will effectively assist the airline and its plan to maintain the St. Kitts and Nevis routes. Airline management is expected to visit the federation in the coming days with the view of addressing the situation.