Delta Airlines is planning to re-enter the Guyana market – By Ray Chickrie

Delta Airlines

By Ray Chickrie – Caribbean News Now contributor

GEORGETOWN, Guyana – SkyTeam member, Delta Airlines (DA), is planning to re-enter the Guyana market amidst growing demand for more airlift from the United States especially after an upsurge of business travellers to Guyana since the country discovered about 6.5 billion barrels of oil and gas.

In 2008, Delta entered the Guyana market but abruptly pulled out in 2013 due to “poor performance of the route.”

An employee at Delta Airline and who doesn’t want to be identified, confirmed that the airline is planning to re-enter the Guyana market.             

Transportation and Infrastructure Minister David Patterson told cabinet this week, “There are other expressions of interest. Quite a few other airlines: two American and one European are interested in Guyana and we’re actively engaging them.”

Patterson’s statement makes this development more credible.

Delta most likely will fly from NYC, Atlanta or Houston to Georgetown, Guyana nonstop.

Just a few weeks ago, Exxon-Mobil made its 13th oil discovery off the Guyana coast. Moreover, it is this increase of business travellers to the country that is attracting more airlines to Guyana.

The Guyana/Suriname basin potentially holds an estimated 13.6 billion barrels of oil and 32 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

Recently American Airlines (AA) began selling tickets for its planned JFK to Georgetown daily flights using the Boeing 737-800s.

After a successful start of the four weekly Miami/GEO route, AA will increase that to daily and fly a larger aircraft, replacing the Airbus A319 with the Boeing 737-800.

For decades Caribbean Airlines (CAL) had a monopoly on the JFK/GEO route but now the route will see heavy competition. JetBlue also plans to fly the JFK/GEO route in December or early 2020.

In 2013, Sarah Lora, general manager, corporate communications in Latin America and the Caribbean said the following-

“Although Delta would prefer to continue serving the market, flights between Georgetown and New York’s JFK International Airport have experienced a significant decline in passenger loads and revenues for the past 18 months, leading to unsustainable losses. We have made the difficult decision to eliminate our Georgetown service to better focus our resources on profitable markets.”

However, the government of Guyana, at that time, dismissed their explanation.

“That cannot be the case because they have had an increase in load from the day they started to now. In January of this year, they had 89 percent. It cannot be a load issue,” said former tourism minister, Irfaan Ali.

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