By YOURI KEMP
Tribune Business Reporter
Bahamian airlines yesterday said travellers have been “receptive and understanding” of the new COVID-19 health measures following inter-island domestic travel’s Monday restart.
Sherrexcia “Rexy” Rolle, Western Air’s vice-president of operations and general counsel, told Tribune Business: “Flights resumed yesterday [Monday] and we were glad to see familiar faces. People were receptive and understanding to the new policies.
“As expected, there were a number of individuals eager to return to their desired destination. Our team has implemented additional cleaning procedures and has been working consistently to ensure the aircraft and various waiting areas are maintaining a clean, sanitary and safe environment.”
Ms Rolle added: “As we’ve shared on our social media, we encourage passengers to review our flight guide to know what to expect when travelling, and tips on how to keep themselves and others safe.
“Those tips include frequent hand washing; keeping the required mask on, including on boarding the aircraft; having air vents pointed directly below and not to the side and, of course, if you are unwell or displaying symptoms such as coughing, sneezing etc, please travel at another time when you are well. Change in reservations can still be done with no penalties or fees.”
Lori Roach, director of Golden Wings Charter, added: “We started off with two flights on Monday. It’s going well. We’re taking bookings and we have quite a few lined up for this week and next week.
“It’s fine now because the permit system has slackened a little bit. We only need permits now to go to the US, so inter-island travel operates as normal.”
The Ministry of Tourism and Aviation, in a statement issued yesterday, said: “In accordance with the government’s phased reopening plan, inter-island domestic travel has resumed across the islands of The Bahamas. Travel by commercial flight, as well as mailboat, passenger ferry, domestic pleasure craft and yachts, is permitted across all islands.
“All persons intending to travel domestically within The Bahamas are required to complete a Travel Health Card application prior to departure. Travellers can visit travel.gov.bs to complete the form online. This is an important step for contact tracing purposes. In the coming weeks, The Bahamas will continue preparing to reopen the country’s borders for international travel, which is expected on July 1.”