Canada airlines granted expanded air access to Cuba airports
Cuba has given Canada expanded air access allowing specific airlines to operate more flights to Cuba in an attempt to boost tourism and visitor numbers to the stunning island which is situated near Mexico in the Caribbean.
An agreement has been made between Cuba's communist regime and the Harper government allowing Canadian airlines expanded access to provide more flights to Cuba.
Four Canadian airlines have been given the go ahead to provide more flights to Cuba and then on to multiple locations after landing in Cuba. This will enable travellers on Cuba holidays to fly with Canadian airlines to more than one destination within the country in the space of just one holiday.
The agreement was made despite air travel restrictions being put in place on 14 countries, including Cuba, just three weeks ago. The United States put the restrictions in place deeming the countries as potential terrorism threat after a bomber threatened to blow up an aircraft destined for Detroit last month.
The Cuban ambassador to Canada, Teresita de Jesus Vicente Sotolongo, said:
"We have signed recently a good agreement to give more opportunities to Canadian airlines."
The number of Canadians taking flights to Cuba has significantly risen over recent years resulting in close relationships between the visitors and the Cubans. Last year Cuba saw 900,000 Canadian visitors to the region staying in Cuba hotels and resorts and helping boost the country's tourism and travel sector. This year, Cuba tourism officials are hoping to top one million visitors to the stunning Caribbean region.
Despite Cuba sitting just 145km off the tip of Florida in the United States, the 50 year old U.S embargo which forbid Americans travelling to Cuba is still currently in place.
The Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, said last year that he thinks the U.S ban had not worked and that Washington should lift it but also believes that Cuba has human rights problems within its communist regime. The four airlines who will be affected by the expansion of flights to Cuba are Canjet Airlines, WestJest, Air Transat, and Sunwing Airlines.
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