Despite a noticeable decline in numbers, regional airline LIAT has been described as the largest mover of passenger traffic through the Grantley Adams International Airport (GAIA).
Corporate communications specialist at the GAIA, Keith Goddard, said the airline remained “a key partner” of that facility, adding that regional transportation continued to play a critical role in the operations of the airport.
Goddard’s comments came this week as the cash-strapped airline announced a partnership with local distributors Bryden Stokes Limited to offer passengers a hot beverage and snack on board selected flights out of Barbados.
“LIAT is the largest mover of air traffic in terms of passenger traffic through Grantley Adams International Airport. In 2012, we had over 408,320 passengers passing through Grantley Adams; in 2013 [there were] 389,131; and so far for the year, 189,882 passengers passing through, which shows to you and to all of us that LIAT is a key player within this part of the region and particularly here at the Grantley Adams International Airport,” said Goddard.
In 2012, the airport recorded a total passenger traffic of 1,970,853, a two per cent decline over the previous year. Last year, the total number of passengers passing through the airport was 1,849,306, also a two per cent decline over 2012.
For the months of January to June this year the total number recorded stood at 974, 661.
Goddard stressed that passengers on regional carriers remained critical to the operations of the airport.
“Certainly when we look at the figures in terms of what traffic moves between LIAT and Caribbean Airlines and other smaller carriers, certainly intra-regional traffic is important to GAIA,” said Goddard.
“Like the overall national position that Caribbean traffic is critical to Barbados, we would use the same position in terms of the traffic that passes through GAIA. If you had to dissect it, Caribbean traffic would be a significant portion of the traffic that passes through this airport,” said Goddard.