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Tobago Business Chamber questions rationale behind Barbados route

Martin George & Company > Newspaper Articles  > Tobago Business Chamber questions rationale behind Barbados route

Tobago Business Chamber questions rationale behind Barbados route

Chairman of the Tobago Business Chamber Martin George is questioning “ the rationale and financial justification” for the newly announced Tobago to Barbados route by Caribbean Airlines Limited (CAL) especially when he says the domestic air bridge still remains “under-served and under-resourced.”

In a statement announcing the introduction of the new service today, CAL CEO Garvin Medera said it’ll be another choice for travellers to connect to various transatlantic markets.

He explained that the addition of the new route is aligned with the airline’s mandate to improve regional connectivity and to support the development of multi-destination tourism.

Speaking with Loop News on the matter however, George expressed concerns whether any proper market research was done by the airline prior to its’ decision:

“Anything which increases connectivity between Tobago and the rest of the World is always good; however one wonders if this is part of some strategic Marketing plan by the Tobago Tourism Agency Ltd to specifically target travellers from Barbados or if it is just a Knee-jerk reaction as it was with so many other destinations where CAL ventured into, without the proper Market Research and the empirical data to show that this venture could be profitable,” George said.

He said therefore the Chamber awaits “the revelation by CAL as to the Market Facts and statistical data which prompted this decision.”

George noted that the last flight to Tobago from Trinidad is still as early as 8:30pm,  “so it may be a case of scarce resources being diverted away from the Trinidad-Tobago Airbridge to service a Tobago-Barbados route, for which I have hitherto seen or heard, no public outcry, nor has there seemed to be, any demonstrated demand.”

He said furthermore, in light of CAL’s previous explanation that they needed Cabinet’s or the Ministry of Finance’s permission, to put on extra flights to Tobago; “we wait to see the Cabinet Note confirming this decision and the reasons for this new route.”

Date: April 20, 2022

By: Beena Mahase

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