rising
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Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:01 pm

I was looking at the schedules of airlines, principally from the United States, to PAP and it's actually quite amazing, at least it was to me, the amount of flights available non-stop to Haiti. I can't imagine there is much if any tourist traffic. What is driving this demand?

From what I could see:

United sends a daily 738 from EWR.

AMR sends a three flights a day from Miami, a 738, 757, and a 763. From FLL they send two 738s. And lastly, from JFK, they send another 763.

Delta has a daily flight from JFK, and also has flights at other times from ATL.

Air France operates a daily A320 from MIA .

Insel Air fly a MD83 from MIA.

What's the attraction to PAP for airlines? Strong yields, loads? Where is this traffic coming from?
If it doesn't make sense, it's because it's not true.
 
cedarjet
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:06 pm

Big expat community? Don't underestimate the scale of the NGO industry. PAP is a total magnet for those guys. Then again I am a bit surprised to see a 767-300 on the list and multiple dailies. Thanks for the interesting info. Other explanations from those who know the market better (is Wyclef Jean an a.netter?) will be interesting to read.
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deltairlines
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:36 pm

Note that, with the exception of Delta's ATL flight (which is once a week for now, goes to 3x/wk this summer), the markets served are either in the New York or South Florida areas, both of which have strong local traffic bases to PAP.
 
LOWS
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:49 pm

Quoting rising (Thread starter):
Air France operates a daily A320 from MIA .

Do they have full rights on that route or is it just to connect to CDG?
 
ROSWELL41
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:51 pm

NK flies FLL to PAP six times a week too.
 
deltairlines
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:52 pm

Quoting LOWS (Reply 3):
Do they have full rights on that route or is it just to connect to CDG?

Full rights. The flight continues on to PTP. The timings on it don't allow for connections to CDG in Miami (it's a morning flight out of MIA and a late evening arrival).
 
LOWS
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:55 pm

Quoting deltairlines (Reply 5):
Full rights. The flight continues on to PTP. The timings on it don't allow for connections to CDG in Miami (it's a morning flight out of MIA and a late evening arrival).

So is it because PTP is a French territory, technically it is then France-US?
 
deltairlines
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Tue Jan 01, 2013 11:58 pm

Quoting LOWS (Reply 6):
So is it because PTP is a French territory, technically it is then France-US?

Not from the PAP perspective as AF has full traffic rights on MIA-PAP.
 
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drerx7
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:06 am

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
Then again I am a bit surprised to see a 767-300 on the list and multiple dailies.

And it was a religious AB3 station before they were retired. PAP has tremendous VFR traffic from NYC and South Florida. A lot of cargo and luggage is carried as well. I know NK also had started the route before. A dental colleague of mine is Haitian and she would travel frequently to PAP from BNA where we were in dental school. She took NK once but usually she would fly American.
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flyjoe
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:11 am

PAP is a unique market. There's a lot of VFR traffic, along with mission/relief travel. I myself have been to PAP three times on church mission trips and headed back later this year. The flights are always packed, whether it's a 738, 763 or A300. It's amazing to see the amount of personal items that are carried by pax from the US. When our group goes, we make full use of the 50 lb / 2 bag limit and sometimes a few excess bags if we need for our trip.
 
flymia
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:44 am

Quoting flyjoe (Reply 9):
There's a lot of VFR traffic, along with mission/relief travel.


Exactly.

Quoting cedarjet (Reply 1):
I am a bit surprised to see a 767-300 on the list and multiple dailies.


It used to be multiple A300s to PAP from JFK and MIA on AA before they retired. Tons of cargo on the route and the passengers bring tons of bags. AA even had an A300 on FLL-PAP for a bit of time.

At MIA PAP has its own dedicated check in space for its flights. The amount of baggage PAP passengers have is crazy. I have seen the flight load many times and it is over 50% VFR traffic. The Haitian community in South Florida is HUGE. Tons of people going to see family in Miami or Haiti. Given that there is some business traffic also even though I can't think it would be too much because Haiti is such a poor country. The rest of the flight is filled with NGO workers, doctors, mission trips etc.. There is a lot of charity and NGO organizations down there so given there are not really too many flights to chose from it makes sense some of these flights are full.
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yyz717
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:45 am

I wonder if the high crime and extremely poor market (pre and post earthquake), whether PAP also has barriers to entryfor new carriers that serve to increase the profit of carriers already in the markets?
I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:48 am

Quoting deltairlines (Reply 7):
Quoting LOWS (Reply 6):
So is it because PTP is a French territory, technically it is then France-US?

Not from the PAP perspective as AF has full traffic rights on MIA-PAP.

Fifth freedom rights only. AF couldn't operate a stand-alone MIA-PAP flight. PAP has to be an intermediate stop en route to PTP (or FDF or CAY if they operated those directly) since Guadeloupe, Martinique and French Guiana are part of France.

Quoting flyjoe (Reply 9):
PAP is a unique market. There's a lot of VFR traffic, along with mission/relief travel.

Not sure if it's changed recently but a high percentage of taxi drivers in Montreal used to be Haitian.
 
rising
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:49 am

Quoting flymia (Reply 10):

Interesting. Does AA have their own station there with their own employees, or are they contracted? I would think flight crews simply return on the same flights- no overnight stays?
If it doesn't make sense, it's because it's not true.
 
flyjoe
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:54 am

Quoting flymia (Reply 10):
It used to be multiple A300s to PAP from JFK and MIA on AA before they retired.

Here is a picture I took in 2008 as I boarded my flight with three A-300s on the ground.
Quoting rising (Reply 13):
Does AA have their own station there with their own employees, or are they contracted?

The customer service agents were AA staff the last time I was there in 2010. I'm sure the ramp is contracted.
 
irshava
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:27 am

Quoting rising (Thread starter):
Air France operates a daily A320 from MIA

With an A320? How does that work... they base one of their aircraft from France in Haiti? Never knew this..
“If you were born without wings, do nothing to prevent them from growing.”
 
Viscount724
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:36 am

Quoting irshava (Reply 15):
Quoting rising (Thread starter):
Air France operates a daily A320 from MIA

With an A320? How does that work... they base one of their aircraft from France in Haiti? Never knew this..

No I think they have 2 A320s based in either PTP or FDF (forget which) to operate the routes between the French islands and to MIA. They've been doing that for decades. Before the A320s they used 727s, 737s and Caravelles and probably propeller types originally. In 1983 they were using the 727-200.

For many years those were AF's only flights to MIA as they didn't start Paris-MIA service until sometime in the mid to late 1980s.

There have been quite a few threads on this subject. This is the most recent one just a couple of months ago. Air France In Miami In The 1960s-70s. (by doulasc Oct 9 2012 in Civil Aviation)

[Edited 2013-01-01 17:40:58]
 
steex
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 1:43 am

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 16):
No I think they have 2 A320s based in either PTP or FDF (forget which) to operate the routes between the French islands and to MIA.

The 320s are indeed based at PTP, the FDF operations obviously use the birds rotating to/from PTP.
 
mirrodie
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:45 am

Can anyone define the terms
NGO and
VFR used above regarging types of traffic into/out of PAP?

Yep, the flights out of NY are always full and never seen it priced less than $500 R/T either.
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steex
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:49 am

Quoting mirrodie (Reply 18):

Can anyone define the terms
NGO and
VFR used above regarging types of traffic into/out of PAP?

NGO = non-governmental organization (essentially, human aid and volunteer groups in this case)
VFR = visiting friends & relatives
 
FlyDeltaJets
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:47 am

Quoting mirrodie (Reply 18):
Yep, the flights out of NY are always full and never seen it priced less than $500 R/T either.

Up until around maybe 2008 or so, AA had exclusive rights to this route and the certainly charged accordingly espeically during holiday seasons.
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United_fan
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 12:40 pm

Quoting FlyDeltaJets (Reply 20):
Quoting mirrodie (Reply 18):
Yep, the flights out of NY are always full and never seen it priced less than $500 R/T either.

Up until around maybe 2008 or so, AA had exclusive rights to this route and the certainly charged accordingly espeically during holiday seasons.

I remember that. I also remember seeing the signs @ MIA for excusive checki-ins. Do they still not RON planes in Haiti. I read that the FA's do not leave the plane during turns.

I was also watching 'The Serpent and the Rainbow', and there is a great scene where they get on and start up a PA 727 in PAP.

[Edited 2013-01-02 05:17:02]
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sqsfo
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 2:25 pm

For a minute I thought the Term VFR was referring to Visual Flight Rules!
Thanks for the clarification guys!
 
AirGAbon
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 3:55 pm

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 16):
Before the A320s they used 727s, 737s and Caravelles and probably propeller types originally. In 1983 they were using the 727-200.

And after the B727-200 AF used the B737-300, based in PTP. With an extensive network including at that time, flights to MIA, PAP, SDQ and from FDF to CCS, PBM, CAY, BEL.

Now the 320 are used to SDQ, MIA, PAP, CAY, FDF, PTP, sometimes PUJ and in the past SXM, SJU and even maybe HAV (not sure for HAV).
 
bohica
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 4:25 pm

Quoting Viscount724 (Reply 16):
Before the A320s they used 727s, 737s and Caravelles and probably propeller types originally. In 1983 they were using the 727-200.

In the mid 1970's AF wet leased 737's from Western Airlines for their Caribbean services.


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mirrodie
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 4:28 pm

Quoting sqsfo (Reply 22):
For a minute I thought the Term VFR was referring to Visual Flight Rules!
Thanks for the clarification guys!

Same here! And great reference to Serpent!

The FA that used to fly the JFK-PAP route regularly lives around the block from me. She could tell you some effin stories about those flights!
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crank
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 4:30 pm

When I lived there back in '96 AF operated both a 737-200 and a -300 series in the caribbean, I remember flying on the 300 on FDF-SDQ-PAP and back.
 
matt
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 4:40 pm

On a related note, Canadian-based Transat Holidays is now offering tour packages to Haiti. The last time Transat sent vacationers to Haiti was 23 years ago.

http://www.transatholidays.com/en/Ha...ection-Duo-Haiti?ID=26251&tmpl=DO#

Here is an article about it in the Toronto Star:

http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/arti...acationers-to-haiti-after-23-years

Matt
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airbazar
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:22 pm

Quoting LOWS (Reply 3):
Do they have full rights on that route or is it just to connect to CDG?

Check out this other older thread. IB also used to have a similar operation at MIA until right after 9/11.
Iberia MD-87 And Air France A320 At Miami... (by Twa902fly Dec 13 2001 in Civil Aviation)
 
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jmw99ttu
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:36 pm

I used to work the JFK-MIA-PAP-JFK turns when I was based at JFK in 2000/2001. The A300s were always packed to the rafters. Some of my favorite stories from my flying days involve those flights. I really grew to love the Haitian people on those trips. They would certainly drive you crazy, but in a nice and endearing way.

We were allowed to leave the plane and go into the terminal, but that was it. There was a restaurant there that had good pizza. If a flight canceled they would bump passengers off the next flight to get the crew out. It was extremely rare for crews to overnight there. AC also flew an A340 in there from YUL or YYZ and I believe it was a turn for them as well. I don't think their service was daily though.
 
SurfandSnow
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 6:55 am

In terms of aviation, it can reasonably be assumed that the least stable, poorest, most corrupt, crime-ridden, dangerous countries are the most profitable for airlines. The likes of Haiti are a gold mine for American carriers, much like Central African nations are a boon for their European counterparts. Airlines charge what the market will bear - people have to visit friends and relatives, or conduct business, or get out. Local government restrictions and other operational challenges tend to keep competition to a minimum - barriers to entry that allow incumbent airlines to function much like highly profitable patent-protected pharmaceutical manufacturers!

On the other hand, open free markets that tend to be the most wealthy, peaceful, beautiful places on earth are often marginal, at best. New Zealand, Luxembourg, Scandinavia, etc. are great examples. Businesses are very conscious of expenses, rarely shelling out money for F, or in some cases discouraging travel whenever possible. Consumers are educated, and have tools like travel websites to always get the best deal. They can always postpone that vacation for any reason. New entrants can easily raise capital to inject competition to the marketplace, and existing airlines can easily start or increase service as they please. Many airlines don't even find it worthwhile to serve these markets at all!

Haiti is now served by all 3 major U.S. legacy/network airlines, and NK as well. Not to mention other foreign players operating fifth freedom services. I daresay it won't be much longer before B6 adds JFK-PAP - they have a knack for serving the toughest VFR Caribbean markets!
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Skywatcher
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:52 pm

One of the many unusual things about Haiti is that there is no indigineous airline to provide local competition to the U.S. carriers (and TS/AC/AF).
I took an AA A-300 to PAP from Miami and back about 20 years ago. The crew (American) and the passengers (overwhelmingly Haitian) might as well been from different planets.They could barely communicate with each other and I think I had to go through 5 different security checks before being allowed on the plane in PAP.The chaos in the PAP airport was extreme.
It was a unique experience but it's certainly not for everybody. Haiti is really just so hopeless. It was bad 20 years ago and it's far worse now. When you're approching the island you can see the soil draining from the land massively into the Caribean sea and the very noticible straight line on the border with the Dominican Republic (Haiti = stripped of trees, DR = forested).
 
fly2yyz
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:58 pm

Quoting matt (Reply 27):
On a related note, Canadian-based Transat Holidays is now offering tour packages to Haiti. The last time Transat sent vacationers to Haiti was 23 years ago.

Transat has been operating once weekly from YUL-PAP for a while actually. For this package it is the first time that they are going to have a vacation package for guests to spend time on the beaches there as well as spend time seeing the "real" Haiti.
 
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United_fan
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:12 am

Quoting Fly2yyz (Reply 32):
For this package it is the first time that they are going to have a vacation package for guests to spend time on the beaches there as well as spend time seeing the "real" Haiti.

Umm,no thanks 'real' or 'beach' Haiti.
Champagne For My Real Friends,and Real Pain For My Sham Friends
 
FI642
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Sat Jan 05, 2013 12:23 am

The 763 is for cargo. BIG money. It's sad that Haiti has so many problems. I know several
folks from there that are simply wonderful.
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jetskipper
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Sat Jan 05, 2013 1:06 am

United just announced today that with the January 12th schedule load, that the EWR-PAP route will be cancelled effective April 2013.
 
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yyz717
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Sat Jan 05, 2013 8:20 am

Quoting matt (Reply 27):
On a related note, Canadian-based Transat Holidays is now offering tour packages to Haiti. The last time Transat sent vacationers to Haiti was 23 years ago.

http://www.transatholidays.com/en/Ha...l=DO#

It's hard to believe PAP would be a tourist destination, especially as described above.

Quoting Skywatcher (Reply 31):
The chaos in the PAP airport was extreme.

How so? Chaotic disorder and inefficiency?
I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
Viscount724
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Sun Jan 06, 2013 1:04 am

Quoting yyz717 (Reply 36):
It's hard to believe PAP would be a tourist destination, especially as described above.

Recent article on Haiti tourism.
http://articles.latimes.com/2012/nov...iness/la-fi-haiti-tourism-20121122

Excerpts:

"If they sell beaches, sun and palm trees, they're going to lose," said Bruce Turkel, a Miami-based marketing expert who has worked as a brand consultant for Puerto Rico. "There are plenty of audiences that will go to Haiti happily, like adventure travelers and cultural tourists, whether they're interested in music or art. That's what Haiti needs to concentrate on."

Some entrepreneurs are pinning their hopes on adventure travel, a potentially lucrative market that taps travelers who may be more forgiving of the country's famously rough roads and dicey infrastructure.

"Slowly, the word is spreading out: 'Hey, it's not as bad as you think,'" Kiracofe said. "Haiti is pristine in many ways."
 
SurfandSnow
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RE: Is Port-Au-Prince (PAP) Really This Profitable?

Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:29 am

Quoting Jetskipper (Reply 35):

I'm guessing part of this has to do with the fact that most Haitians and Haitians-Americans in the New York metropolitan area live in Brooklyn and Queens. As such, the longstanding AA JFK-PAP service and DL's JFK-PAP (offered since 2009) are much more convenient for this population than getting across Manhattan to EWR. New Jersey does have its own Haitian population - the fourth largest in the U.S., after Florida, New York, and Boston - but I guess it wasn't enough to support the UA service.

Despite UA withdrawing from PAP after less than 2 years of service, I still think PAP would be a great market for B6. They have been very successful with the tough Caribbean VFR markets - I can't imagine PAP would pose many more challenges than KIN, STI, or PSE. They could do PAP from a combination of JFK, FLL, and BOS, which are not only their strongest hub/focus city markets but also the three largest Haitian diaspora centers in the U.S.
Flying in the middle seat of coach is much better than not flying at all!

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