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AirTran cuts service to Bermuda

Bermuda will lose its service from AirTran Airways next year in what Tourism Minister Shawn Crockwell called a “very disappointing” move.

The cut was described as a “business decision” by the airline, which said Bermuda had fallen short of its performance targets.

“We've had conversations today with the Ministry of Tourism and our other business partners in Bermuda about our decision not to resume seasonal service to the Island,” a spokesman said. “While we can't rule out a decision to return in the future, service to Bermuda on AirTran currently doesn't meet our performance targets.”

AirTran's May, 2011 inaugural flight from Atlanta to Bermuda was celebrated as the start of a new low-cost service to the US.

Its last flight to LF Wade International Airport was on September 2.

The airline is merging with Southwest Airlines and is reported to be cutting its fleet in the process and reappraising its service routes.

“This news is very disappointing but not entirely unexpected,” Mr Crockwell said.

He added that AirTran management have “left the door open” on the question of a possible future return to the Island.

“We will continue to work with AirTran and hope they will indeed continue to operate a Bermuda service in coming years,” Mr Crockwell said.

Shadow Tourism Minister Wayne Furbert voiced concern at the development.

“AirTran were put in place to try and bring down the cost of travelling to Bermuda,” he said. “Now they have pulled out — and the competition out there is great. Hopefully the Minister can work with other airlines. Maybe right now is a time to pause and check where we are.”

AirTran will no longer offer flights to Bermuda (Photo by Glenn Tucker)

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Published October 16, 2013 at 6:25 pm (Updated October 17, 2013 at 12:42 am)

AirTran cuts service to Bermuda

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