VIDER: St. Croix Air Travel Down 6.7% Compared To Last Year … St. Thomas St. John Is Up 64.4 %
CHRISTIANSTED — The Virgin Islands Department of Tourism has announced the addition of a third American Airlines daily flight between Miami and St. Croix for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday.
The extra flight will begin November 23 to 25 and November 30 to December 2, bringing a “welcome boost” to St. Croix, tourism officials said.
American Airlines will also be extending its St. Thomas to St. Croix flights adding daily service starting on December 18.
Currently, American flies between the two islands on Saturdays only, but between December 18 to 24 and December 26 to 30 and January 1, 2020 to January 6, 2020 the airline will increase its service levels.
According to data gathered by the Virgin Islands Department of Economic Research (VIDER), air travel to the territory is up in 2019 compared to 2018 levels.
VIDER said the increase is due to increased air visits to the St. Thomas-St. John district according to the latest figures from August.
The St. Thomas-St. John district has seen a 64.4 percent increase in air travel while St. Croix has experienced a net loss of 6.7 percent.
The three major airlines that serve St. Croix are: American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and Spirit airlines.
St. Thomas has those three carriers, along with JetBlue and United Airlines.
Seaborne Airlines services St. Thomas and St. Croix in addition to other flights in the region, but is not considered a major carrier.
Tourism Commissioner Joseph Boschulte said the expansion in airlift works well with his department’s strategy to increase and “strengthen demand for St. Croix by developing a distinctive brand for the island.”
Boschulte also reported that between June 4 to August 17, American Airlines will operate a third daily flight to St. Croix, using a 172-seat Boeing 737 aircraft.
American Airlines flight 2531 will depart Miami at 10:35, arriving St. Croix at 13:14, while the return flight departs St. Croix at 13:59, arriving Miami at 17:10.
The other two flights depart Miami at 12:05 and 17:35, and leave St. Croix at 15:29 and 08:00 the following day, respectively.
Boschulte thanked American for its commitment to the U.S .Virgin Islands, and underscored that the department will work closely with the Dallas-based carrier to ensure that the new flights are successful.