Virgin Atlantic says after June 8 it will stop its operations between St. Lucia and London’s Gatwick Airport, for the ‘foreseeable future.’
The on-line publication, St. Lucia Times, Virgin said the decision to withdraw from the island was not taken lightly and that Virgin Holidays will continue to serve hotels there after that date through connecting flights via partner airlines.
“Customer bookings for Virgin Atlantic flights departing up until June 7, 2020 will not be impacted,” according to a letter send to tourism industry partners here.
But the publication quoted tourism industry officials as saying that Virgin Atlantic’s decision to scrap the route was linked to a stalemate over the payment of subsidies to the airline.
“According to the sources, Virgin Atlantic was ‘demanding’ EC$2.5 million injection to maintain the flight, which the Saint Lucia government refused to pay,” the publication said, that the government “felt that subsidising the airline would open the floodgates for other carriers to request similar treatment”.
There has been no official response to the report.