Trinidad and Tobago Air Services (TTAS) was formed in 1975 after the failure of privately owned Arawak Airways. Arawak was set up in 1971 and took over the POS
domestic route from BWIA (old BW
) using the DC-6s - BW
itself sold its 727s that year and its fleet comprised only 707s which could not land in TAB
at the time (6050' runway - in fact BW
's 707s never landed in TAB
). Arawak became Caribbean United Airlines in 1973 and did a few regional charters but collapsed in 1974. The Government of Trinidad and Tobago then stepped in and set up TTAS, initially using the DC-6s but later acquiring 3 HS748 Avros, later increasing this fleet to 6 machines. The livery on all the planes was basically the Arawak livery - the DC-6s in the linked pictures effectively just had changes in titles but the livery was Arawak's. TTAS was backed up by BW
from 1976 onwards when the latter obtained DC-9s (4 DC-9-50s and 1 DC-9-32) despite the jets being a rather tight fit on TAB
's short runway. The two airlines merged in 1980 and the Avros carried the titles "BWIA Airbridge" while remaining in the red livery while BWIA was officially renamed Trinidad & Tobago (BWIA International) Airways Corporation. The Avros stuck around until 1986, when BW
moved to an all-jet fleet. They had been used to start flights to GND, SLU
and FDF in the last years of their service with BW
. 1 or 2 of the Avros went to LI
before they replaced them with Super 748s while others ended up in the UK and Canada, if I recall correctly.
I flew on TTAS on several occasions and remember often being served a mint candy prior to take-off - by and large this was the most service anybody has ever offered on the short flights.