Thursday, October 8, 2020

International air travel is down. Can rapid COVID-19 tests resurrect it in the Caribbean?

Four months after Caribbean countries closed their borders and suspended flights due to the coronavirus, American Airlines on July 7 resumed scheduled service to eight destinations from its hub at Miami International Airport.

Jacqueline Charles and Taylor Dolven
Miami Herald

Facing one of the biggest downturns in international air travel and tourism amid a still surging coronavirus pandemic, Caribbean nations and airlines are hoping rapid COVID-19 testing will help them lure travelers back.

American Airlines, the region’s primary air carrier, has announced that it will soon be piloting a preflight coronavirus testing program with Jamaica, followed by the Bahamas. The U.S.-based carrier, along with United Airlines, also announced it’s launching a similar program for passengers traveling to Costa Rica and Hawaii.

But exactly what that means is unclear.