The Evil that is Red Jet

Disclaimer:

  • I am a life-long LIAT traveler. When you’re from a small island you have no other choice but to fly LIAT. I’ve been a LIAT client probably before I could walk and/or pay for my own ticket. Now that I do both for myself I’m still a LIAT customer.
  • I have had and currently have close family members who have worked and currently work at LIAT.
On to the business. Last week met me in Grantly Adams Airport in Barbados going home. Several passengers were stranded for two reasons:
  1. Bad weather had damaged runway lights in St. Vincent resulting in no flights landing after 5pm.
  2. LIAT workers in Grenada were on go-slow and no to ltd numbers of planes were landing.
At Grantly Adams the anti-LIAT sentiments were strong, Prime Ministers were cursed, upper-management was cursed, staff was cursed. This resulted in persons being stuck in Barbados for some 2-3 days. Fortunately my flight was not so severely affected the hour or so late which I have come to accept is par for the course was fine with me. That very statement makes me an advocate for Red Jet not so?

Not.
At.
All.
People in the region (Caribbean) need to apply two things:
………….1. longer less self-centred memories
People have to strike. No matter how silly, stupid, or outrageous people’s requests may seem to be they have that right to strike and if we only support strikes when they don’t inconvenience us we not serious or ready. That’s how they get management to listen by inconveniencing people. We have to learn to deal. What we can do is educate ourselves re: the issues and push- by writing letters, articles, contacting groups to help support one side or the other.
………….2. common sense
It has to be ridonkulously expensive to run an airline in the Caribbean that essentially functions like a bus/mini-bus/maxi/ZR. The number of stops to let on two-five people at a time, it’s the starting and stopping of a plane that’s most expensive
  • the landing taxes for each airport
  • staff salaries and pensions
  • insurance
  • plane maintenance
  • gas etc.
Who are we doing it? Government subsidies & blind faith b/c we have to get around.
………….1. & 2.
Anyone remember Stanford & Caribbean Star? The airline collapsed b4 the financial crisis. You want to know why? B/c you cannot run fares as cheaply as they did for as long as they did. Why do they come? B/c airlines in the region (Caribbean Airlines & LIAT) are subsidized by government, when the new airlines pop-up gain strength and can no longer survive governments are forced to buy them out.
I’m not saying low prices aren’t tempting.
I’m not quite condemning the use Red Jet.
But I urge you,
I urge myself,
I urge us
to be aware of our buying power and future implications.
Our region is all some of us have.
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