Just a couple notes to this, as well.
There is zero tourist travel at the moment.
Not true. Cruise lines use a northern port in Haiti for day-long stopovers. It is primarily for the beach with a small tourist cachment. But I agree, overall, tourism and tourism infastructure is limited. There were plans to build a Hilton in Port-au-Prince to cater to the small business market, I don't know for certain but am sure this has been put on hold.
AA and the other airlines that fly there do so at great risk.
Overall, I would disagree. AA
's unions would never let them fly to a destination that would put their crew members at risk. It's for this reason they don't overnight, you're correct, but AA
would never intentionally put their crew at risk. Perhaps some of AA
's ground personnel are put at risk traveling to/from the airport. Remember Air France's director of Haiti was assasinated there not too long ago.
Haitian start-ups in general.
It's a market not without entrepreneur's. Haiti Ambassaor and Haiti Intercontinental have all applied for US DOT authority in the past four years, to no avail. I believe it was Haiti Ambassador that planned to wet-lease a LAN 767 to fly JFK
-PAP during the day when the plane sat idle at JFK
There was also a plan for APA
(Dom. Rep) to do some flying to Haiti from Miami with a 727-200, but this never materialized.
I suspect Charlie Voigt's name doesn't curry much favor in Haiti. Air D'Ayiti used to fly three weekly trips to JFK
, but I don't think they're currently flying the route.
One note about AA
's Haitian operations is while there is a significant revenue upside, there are also higher costs. AA
has always had (or did have, if not any longer) an ex-pat run Haiti's operations. They also staff their flights with "Flight Service Directors" that assist the flight attendants in the cabin with Creole translation. And, of course, is AA
's security, in general and as an expense item, even though their Haitian security director was recently indicted on drug trafficking. While the revenue picture is certainly beneficial to AA
, there are added costs to achieving it.