Posted By: Marty
Tropic Air Announces Flights to San Salvador - 11/24/20 11:14 AM
The Airline of Belize is now offering guests more regional destination choices than ever before. Today, Tropic Air announces that it will add new international service to San Salvador, El Salvador (SAL) from the Philip Goldson International Airport (BZE) in Belize City. Flights are initially planned for three times a week, and the start date is subject to government approval.
Flight time will be approximately one hour on Tropic’s twin engine Beechcraft 1900D, a modern, 19 seat airliner designed primarily for regional routes such as this. It is popular around the world for its speed and passenger comfort.
The addition of San Salvador to the airline’s route map means a broadening of reach into Belize’s important business and leisure markets. Not only is San Salvador the economic epicentre of Northern Central America, but it is also an important trading partner for Belize.
“We are very proud of our international service growth, connecting Belize to multiple regional destinations over the last 10-plus years. San Salvador is considered a second home to many in Belize, with many historical and economic ties, so our expansion into this market is a natural one. We are very excited to add the destination to our Tropic family”, said John E Greif III, President of Tropic.
“This new route confirms that Tropic sees San Salvador as a major underserved destination,” said Steven Schulte, CEO of Tropic. “Regional air connectivity is a priority for Tropic and for Belize, and with this announcement we see progress toward our goal of providing tourists, and those with business interests, fast, convenient air service. Routes such as this are essential to Belize’s growth.”
San Salvador will join Cancun, Roatan, and Flores (Peten) on the Airline’s international route map. Tickets will be available for sale at tropicair.com or via your travel professional in the coming weeks.
Amidst Tourism Collapse, Tropic Expands
COVID-19 has pretty much flatlined the tourism industry since March, and while the stakeholders try to slowly recover with the trickle of international guests that have started to travel to Belize, one local air carrier is announcing they intend to scale up their operations.
Tropic Air announced today, that it plans to start offering a flight from Belize to San Salvador, El Salvador.
A press release from the company says, quote, "Flights are initially planned for three times a week, and the start date is subject to government approval. Flight time will be approximately one hour on Tropic's twin-engine Beechcraft 1900D, a modern, 19 seat airliner designed primarily for regional routes such as this. It is popular around the world for its speed and passenger comfort."
But, as viewers will remember Tropic Air was one of the businesses that were hard hit when the world's tourism came to a screeching halt after the coronavirus was declared a pandemic. So, how are they able to offer this new service? That's what we asked the company President in a Zoom teleconference interview:
John Greif - President, Tropic Air
"Taca and Avianca have been operating Salvador/Belize and Belize/Salvador as near as I can tell for 80 years. So, one of the problems is in airlines, when we look to get into a market when we look to a new destination is this is their market. There is their business there. So, in this case, we are absolutely positive that there is business there because it's been operating for so long. Taca started the route, and then Taca amalgamated with Avianca, a Colombian airline, and then, they operated it as Avianca, until March, when COVID hit, and pretty much all of the aviation shutdown. So, there's been nobody in that market since March, and Avianca doesn't have listed when they're going to start. So, we've been in very preliminary discussions with them about us just taking over that route for them."
"San Salvador is the aviation center of Central America. So, a flight from Belize to San Salvador would not just be origin and destination. You can connect intra-Central America, and you can connect to Europe, the States, and the rest of South America."
"We just see a huge potential for the diaspora, both the Belizean and the Salvadoreno diaspora, and the interconnection. So, you could leave Belize with Tropic in the morning, get to San Salvador, go on to South America, to the rest of Central America, to North America, or to Europe. And that's the potential we see."
"We just want to let the traveling public in Belize know that we're always looking for ways to add value to our route structure, and to give them - make things easier for them, both domestically, and internationally."