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Cayman welcomes Air Canada

Front Pages 07 Dec, 2021 Follow News

An official welcome for Air Canada from l-r: Parliamentary Secretary Dwayne Seymour, Deputy Premier Chris Saunders, Minister for Tourism Kenneth Bryan, Parliamentary Secretary Heather Bodden

Air Canada touches down at ORIA once again

Air Canada visitors excited to be in Cayman

Warm welcome for Air Canada arrivals

By Georgia Austin

 

Air Canada was warmly welcomed back to the Owen Roberts International Airport on the afternoon of Saturday 4 December, as the commercial flight schedule from Toronto resumed as per Phase 4 of the Government’s reopening plan.

The highly anticipated arrival of the first Air Canada flight following the border reopening ensured the airport was lively with festivities. Passengers were received by a welcoming party of Government officials led by Minister of Tourism Kenneth Bryan, and including Deputy Premier Chris Saunders, Director of Department of Tourism Rosa Harris, Chief Officer of the Ministry of Tourism Stran Bodden, and new PACT member Dwayne Seymour.

After the 20-month tourism hiatus, alighting Air Canada passengers and flight crew were entertained airside by the Cayman Airways mascot Sir Turtle, celebratory water cannons courtesy of the Cayman Islands Fire Service, and live music and dancing by local artists. Disembarking travellers were greeted affectionately by ministers and officials as they entered through the airport doors.

Owen Roberts International Airport saw the arrival of a larger Air Canada plane than originally planned due to high demand for tickets to Grand Cayman. The Air Canada Rouge A321 is one of the larger aircrafts in the Air Canada fleet, and brought a host of excited tourists, family members, and returning residents to the island.

With Air Canada flights scheduled once a week for the month of December and increasing incrementally to a predicted three times per week in the first quarter of 2022, Tourism Minister Kenneth Bryan spoke optimistically about the return of commercial airlines and tourism to the Islands. While acknowledging the concern and worry of the local community surrounding reopening the borders, Minister Bryan highlighted the importance of job and economic revenue as a result of reviving the tourism industry.

The Minister referred to the border reopening as “a journey” and emphasised the importance of unity within the Caymanian community as he explained: “It’s important that we go on this journey together.” After encouraging Caymanians to fill job roles within the tourism sector, Minister Bryan added: “It’s time to get the tourism industry with faces of Caymanians there to sell the Caymanian story.”

This very ‘Caymanian story’ was displayed by local artists, government officials, and airport employees alike on Saturday with Cayman’s culture of kindness and welcoming witnessed by Air Canada’s first arrivals to Grand Cayman since the early months of 2020.


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