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$7M later, two deadlines passed, still no BVI Airways flights!

- Public was promised by Premier that direct flights will happen on October 1, & November 1, 2016 but have not happened
BVI Airways remains grounded after two promised deadlines by Premier Dr The Hon D. Orlando Smith (right). The latest deadline for the airline to begin operations in the Virgin Islands was November 1, 2016. Photo: Internet Source/VINO
BVI Airways has promised direct flights between Miami, Florida International Airport (left) and the Virgin Islands’ Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (right) located at Beef Island. Photo: Internet Source/VINO
BVI Airways has promised direct flights between Miami, Florida International Airport (left) and the Virgin Islands’ Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport (right) located at Beef Island. Photo: Internet Source/VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- The Virgin Islands (VI) taxpayers have bailed out a defunct BVI Airways that left abruptly in 2014 owing the BVI Airports Authority close to 100,000 United States dollars.

It was announced earlier this year that the Premier Smith led Administration funded the return of the airline with only the promise of direct flights between Miami, Florida International Airport and the Virgin Islands’ Terrance B. Lettsome International Airport located at Beef Island.

No flights, no money back, taxpayers hold the bag!

If the flights never take off, according to the agreement between Government and BVI Airways, the VI taxpayers will not get a dime back.

BVI Airways has missed yet another deadline for its first direct flight, which was to have started yesterday November 1, 2016 according to what Premier Smith told the public. The other promised take off date was October 1, 2016 which never happened.

BVI Airways still being grounded has happened just as senior Opposition Member Hon Andrew A. Fahie (R1) predicted in the House of Assembly (HoA) a few months ago.

More spin, no flights!

Instead BVI Airways yesterday November 1, 2016 announced to selective media houses that its first BAe Avro RJ100 regional four engine jet named, the Spirit of the Virgin Islands, will arrive in the territory at the end of this week.

It avoided information to the public as to why it has missed another flight deadline but claimed that the plane will be engaged in “customary and usual flight demonstration and ground personnel training.”

Immediately after, almost in coordination, Premier and Minister of Finance Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith, in a press release from London, said he is pleased with the announcement by BVI Airways that its first BAe Avro RJ100 regional four engine jet, the Spirit of the Virgin Islands, will be arriving in the Territory at the end of this week for customary and usual flight demonstration and ground personnel training.

However, Premier Smith failed to give taxpayers a new date of expected ‘take off’ of the Government funded airline.

Many approvals still outstanding

It was unearthed in the HoA via questions from the Opposition a few months ago that BVI Airways has still not received many of the approvals required to fly commercial flights from regulators in the USA and the UK.

While many tax payers are outraged with the deal of a $7Million bail out, an opportunity not available for failed or failing local businesses, Premier Smith continues to insist that his bailout deal of BVI Airways for direct air access to the territory is “a game changer for our economy - both in tourism and financial services.”

23 Responses to “$7M later, two deadlines passed, still no BVI Airways flights!”

  • public defender (02/11/2016, 07:56) Like (9) Dislike (1) Reply
    dem ndp man there bad for business
  • wize up (02/11/2016, 08:07) Like (3) Dislike (7) Reply
    the plane coming
  • rattie (02/11/2016, 08:52) Like (9) Dislike (1) Reply
    One day it will take off man relax
  • lmfao (02/11/2016, 09:21) Like (34) Dislike (0) Reply
    We need direct flights not air shows....How soon can i book a flight? Neveruary?
    • teacher john (02/11/2016, 10:11) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
      Look out for them coming back for more money
    • @lmfao (02/11/2016, 15:24) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      It would be a service to VI Airways if u never booked . Don,,'t need nor want your negativity no where near the progress and upward mobility of new ventures. Keep your dark vibes all for the misery of your existence.
  • Yes (02/11/2016, 09:41) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    So let me see. I can catch American, Jet Blue or Spirit from STT for a fraction of the cost on a proven airline flying a proven platform on the route, but I am going to choose a new player flying a old platform unproven on the route or region for a higher price?
    • wize up (02/11/2016, 11:39) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      @ LOL: you understand the matter because the most convincing issue will be cost to travel directly to BVI from Miami or will it be more economical to travel from Miami via St Thomas then onward to BVI....but it will be nice to have another national airline and the powers to be should give thought into providing airline service through the caribbean
    • Nice @LOL (02/11/2016, 12:20) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
      At least we the BVI people, will have our own option than going through STT. You clearly are so blinded by Govt making things better for its people than feeding into the USVI economy. Thank God, I have an option going through Beef, than paying boat and other fees that might add up to the same ticket price out of STT. BTW, I know it won't be that close to cheap but I prefer not to stand in sun while clearing customs twice just to catch a flight.
      • Yes (02/11/2016, 23:02) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        You make assumptions about my eyesight? Why dont you pull the logs out of your eyes before noticing the speck in mine. This is simple economics. Also what is your comfort level with this new entity operating this aircraft new on this route? Remember the airline with two wet leased retired American Airlines MD80s that folded up lickity split due to safety concerns? Remember RedJet? The MD80 was at least a dated but proven platform regionally. What do you know about the RJs? You can be an early adopter and drink the NDP Koolaide if you wish I will keep my scepticism if and until BVIAirways is a proven entity and their price is right.
    • @LOL (02/11/2016, 17:07) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      You are not obligated nor are u compelled to choose BVI Airways. Choice is what you now have.. Appreciate that some will choose American Jet Blue or Spirit and some will choose their own whenever possible. Some choose to enrich foreign million dollar entities and some will choose to enrich self and locall .
      • Yes (02/11/2016, 23:09) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        My point exactly. Your assumptions though are yours. You can choose to be the guinea pig early adopter on this new unproven entity flying RJs to Miami at a premium price if you wish. I am sure they will be serving ice cold Koolaide all the way to Miami. I will be waiting until they are a proven entity and then if the price is right. By the way who exactly was enriched by the 7 million and who will be enriched if the Airline is successful? Oh right we don't know. Its a secret who the actual shareholders are!
    • Wendy (02/11/2016, 17:41) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      Assuming you have shares in American Jet Blue or Spirit, it would make sense to continue building their wealth. Supporting BVI Airways could result in priide and ownership which is a dreaded affliction for many locals.
  • ndp (02/11/2016, 09:42) Like (5) Dislike (10) Reply
    Eat ya'll heart out. The plane is coming and the people will be pleased. This is the same as the cruise pier, they said it would fail, they said it won't be finished, but look at it, PROGRESS.
  • luke (02/11/2016, 10:51) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    When you see a donkey ride it
  • John (02/11/2016, 14:14) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Well, if it does't pan out, we can always take back oil nut bay from no tax Johnson. He got those 400 acres free anyway.
  • egg face (02/11/2016, 15:11) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    Fool fool set a ppl the white man smiling with our ,$7 m
  • Training Flight Attendant (02/11/2016, 20:31) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    I'm in training right now to become one of BVI Airways amazing flight attendant. Just felt the need to put that out there. #progress
  • First district (03/11/2016, 06:38) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    Hello when the government decide to build a college ar yo made noise .build complex noise again. Improve roads and wall noise again now them trying to bring an air line all hell broke loose boss dr smith don't study them it is a little bumpy but you will prove all of them wrong .
  • Boo (03/11/2016, 06:59) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Who are the real shareholder of BVI Airways?
  • Bad..Bad..Decision.. (03/11/2016, 07:21) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    7 Million---A better and more proactive way---2 for Musical Festival---2 for Tortola Festival---1 for Virgin Gorda Festival---1/4 for Anegada Lobdter and other Festival....1/4 for Foxy's old yrs Festival and other JVD Festivals.. 1/4 for Carrot bay Festival...1/4 for Easter Festival.... 1/4 for Horse Race... 1/2 for Sports and Athletics.. The other 1/2 miscellaneous. Money well spent. Plenty fun with Mega returns.

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