Further signaling the continued rebound of tourism to Jamaica, both American Airlines and Southwest Airlines along with Expedia are noting an increase in demand for the destination by travelers in the coming weeks and months.
“American, Southwest and Expedia are all critical partners for Jamaica’s tourism sector, and we look forward to welcoming many more visitors in the near future,” said Minister of Tourism for Jamaica, the Hon. Edmund Bartlett. “Confidence in growth for Jamaica’s tourism remains strong and we will maintain our world-class Jamaica CARES health and safety protocols, including our Resilient Corridors, to ensure a robust winter.”
To meet the higher demand for Jamaica, American Airlines will be up gauging the aircraft utilized on flights to Montego Bay (MBJ) from their major city hubs of Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW), Miami (MIA), and Philadelphia (PHL). As of November, they will be utilizing their new wide-bodied Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner for these operations. The Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner is one of the carrier’s newest planes, offering a more comfortable flight experience with additional conveniences for both business and economy class passengers.
American Airlines is the largest air passenger carrier serving Jamaica. It operates multiple daily non-stop flights to the destination from several U.S. cities including Miami (MIA), New York (JFK), Philadelphia (PHL), Chicago (ORD), Boston (BOS), Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW, and Charlotte (CLT). The airline also recently announced that they will be operating non-stop flights 3 times weekly Sun/Mon/Thu from Philadelphia (PHL) to Kingston (KIN) starting November 4.
Meanwhile, Southwest Airlines has informed Minister Bartlett that their flight operations into Montego Bay (MBJ) near-term are very close to pre-pandemic record year levels. This demand growth indicated by American and Southwest is further supported by Expedia, which has data showing room night and passenger growth metrics surpassing a comparable period in 2019.
These updates were provided during meetings with the airlines and Expedia that were among a series of meetings held with travel industry leaders across Jamaica’s largest source markets of the United States and Canada. The meetings aimed to drive increased tourist arrivals in the near term and to cement further investment in the island’s tourism sector. Joining Minister Bartlett at these meetings was the Chairman of the Jamaica Tourist Board, John Lynch; Director of Tourism, Donovan White; Senior Strategist in the Tourism Ministry, Delano Seiveright and Deputy Director of Tourism for the Americas, Donnie Dawson.
Jamaica remains open for travel and continues to welcome visitors safely. Its health and safety protocols were among the first to receive the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) Safe Travels recognition that allowed the destination to safely reopen to travel in June 2020. The island has also recently announced new cruise developments and ninety percent of planned tourist investments remaining on track.