Minister Richardson announces COPA Airlines to add two additional flights for the high season;

Daily flights being worked on

Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transportation and Telecommunications Hon. Ted Richardson is happy to report that COPA Airlines will be adding two additional weekly flights in December bringing the airlines airlift to the destination to four.


The two additional flights will mean 9,776 additional seats for the destination from Panama.

Minister Richardson is also working closely with the Tourist Bureau and other stakeholders to have COPA fly to the destination on a daily basis.

Even though Minister Richardson was only sworn in a few weeks ago, he paid keen attention and spent a considerable amount of time on the COPA opportunity to reach this final decisive outcome.

Due to the absence of marketing support from St. Maarten in 2012, COPA Airlines reduced its flights to two weekly utilizing an E-190 aircraft with 94 seats back in December 2012.

In 2013, tourism representatives from Sint Maarten along with St. Martin and Anguilla had a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in place to further promote the Panama to St. Maarten route with connections throughout South America.

Extra effort were made to bring South American travel agents to the three destinations on a familiarization trip as well as organizing workshops and training sessions in the different markets (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay, Paraguay, Colombia and Panama).

Sint Maarten tourism representatives brought 34 COPA Vacation wholesalers to the country for SMART 2013.

The three destinations along with Princess Juliana International Airport and Sint Maarten’s representative in South America, Interamerican, also met with COPA Airlines to further discuss the increase in service to the destination.

In May the three destinations were awarded "Best Marketing Effort" by COPA Airlines/Vacations during the COPA Conventions.

Tourism officials at all times have continued lobbying for additional flights with COPA Airlines given the importance of the South American market.

"The South American market holds a lot of potential for the destination and we are working diligently to have the airline fly daily creating more opportunities for the destination where it concerns Latin American visitors," Minister Hon. Ted Richardson said on Sunday.

COPA Airlines started servicing St. Maarten in December 2010 with four weekly flights using a B737-700 aircraft with seating capacity of 124.

COPA Airlines is based in Panama City, Panama, and serves as Panama’s flag carrier. The airline offers over 280 daily scheduled flights to 65 destinations in 29 countries in North, Central and South America, and the Caribbean.

The airline was founded in 1947 and as of 2012, employed over 8,000 people, most of them residing in Panama.