Tuesday, Oct 22, 2019
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Busiest summer in LPIA’s history

Marketing campaigns, airline capacity increases and a 30 percent spike in arrivals from Canada have contributed to a record summer for the Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA), a press release from the Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD) has revealed.

According to NAD, this summer was the busiest in the airport’s history.

NAD CEO Vernice Walkine explained that almost every airline that services The Bahamas increased its capacity as a result of greater marketing strategies and an increased interest in New Providence “as a result of the opening of the final phase of Baha Mar and unprecedented levels of marketing by Atlantis, Baha Mar, Sandals, the Ministry of Tourism and the Nassau Paradise Island Promotion Board”.

Overall, NAD reported a 6.2 percent increase in passengers for the fiscal year ending June 30. It added that July’s results were even stronger, up seven percent over the previous year, with last month projecting similar results.

“Between February and June, five airlines added flights or switched to planes with greater capacity to serve LPIA,” the release states.

“In March, Southwest added a second Ft. Lauderdale flight. Delta upgraded its Atlanta flights, adding 50 seats a day for the peak winter season and adding a second flight from New York’s JFK on Saturdays. American Airlines added 40 seats to its service from Charlotte, N.C., WestJet added 32 percent more Toronto frequencies during Canada’s cold winter months and United upped its flights from Newark airport by 50 percent in March. Those increases netted a record month in March with nearly 182,300 passengers arriving in Nassau.”

Walkine said these increases are continuing their trend into the end of 2018 and the beginning of 2019.

“The Ministry of Tourism and the Nassau Paradise Island Promotion Board plan to further expand their marketing spend to increase passenger traffic. Imagine someone sitting at home in the far north, snowed in with freezing temperatures outside, and they look at their TV or device and see families diving into the water, frolicking on the beach, tanned and smiling, wearing a sun dress for dinner,” she said. “Industry partners including the promotion boards, hotels and [the Ministry of] Tourism are doing a beautiful job of showing what The Bahamas has to offer and the airlines are responding with increased capacity to handle the growth.”

The statement added that beginning in July and continuing into the end of the year, Delta, JetBlue, United, Copa and American “all increased or will increase the number of flights from popular destinations, with American adding a new Chicago non-stop on Saturdays, implementing year-round service from New York’s La Guardia and offering weekend service from Dallas, as well as adding a third daily flight from its Charlotte hub”.

The release said these additional flights are expected to generate about 21 percent growth in seats, especially for the generally slow month of October and an almost 15 percent increase for the next six months.

According to the release, more than 3.3 million passengers passed through LPIA in 2017.

Chester Robards

Senior Business Reporter at The Nassau Guardian
Chester Robards rejoined The Nassau Guardian in November 2017 as a senior business reporter. He has covered myriad topics and events for The Nassau Guardian.
Education: Florida International University, BS in Journalism
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