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First Sunwing flight received at Flamingo International Airport

The first direct flight from Sunwing, the Canadian airline, from Toronto to Bonaire, landed safely at Flamingo International Airport on Sunday afternoon, with more than 150 Canadian tourists on board. The passengers were greeted at the airport by the staff of Tourism Corporation Bonaire with music, welcome bag with island information and a welcome snack.

For the crew members there was a special reception in restaurant 'Techno Bar' and they were addressed by deputy Hubert Martis and director of Tourism Corporation Bonaire (TCB), Maurice Adriaens.

"As a government, we are happy with the arrival of Sunwing", Captain Chris Lewis and his 6-person crew assured Commissioner Martis "In the past period we have had many problems with the airlift to and from the island. That is why we are happy that Sunwing is on the island. It is a great asset to the island. We are gradually getting out of the impasse in the airlift area".

According to Tourism Director of TCB, Maurice Adriaens, the flights are already a great success. Sunwing will fly weekly between Toronto and Bonaire over the next 22 weeks with a Boeing 737-800 with a seating capacity of 189 seats. Sunwing is already thinking of expanding the number of flights to two flights a week from Canada in the future, announced Maurice Adriaens. This would mean an expansion of almost 400 seats a week for Bonaire.

"We know that for Christmas the flights have a 100% occupancy. I hope everyone on Bonaire is ready for that. Normally we receive aircraft with around 130 passengers, but now that number is doubled. This would mean that more baggage has to be handled, more busses to transport the guests to hotels etc".

Adriaens thanked Plaza Beach Resort Bonaire who drew the project and played a vital role in getting Sunwing to the island. But also thanked other resorts such as Eden Beach Resort, Delfins Resort, Divi Flamingo Resort and Buddy Dive Resort who also contributed to make this flight possible.

For the crew TCB also had a surprise. They were appointed by TCB as special 'ambassadors' of the island. They were given the corresponding medal by deputy Hubert Martis.

TCB would like to thank Mr. Salt man from Sea Salt Bonaire and Cadushy Distillery for their contribution.