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(CNS Business): Following the inaugural Cayman Airways Limited (CAL) flight to Panama last month, the national carrier launched its seasonal nonstop flights between Grand Cayman and Dallas on Saturday, 23 June. Cayman Airways President and CEO, Fabian Whorms, said the airline anticipates much success for Cayman tourism with this new Dallas route. “In starting this new non-stop service to Dallas, on the heels of launching Panama, we are fulfilling our mandate as a lever of national economic growth, especially in relation to supporting our tourism industry. We are also excited to offer our local residents the opportunity to experience all of what Dallas has to offer, including the fantastic shopping and tourist attractions.”
During the inaugural flight’s ribbon cutting ceremony at Owen Roberts International Airport (ORIA), Premier McKeeva Bush, who is also the tourism minister, noted that Dallas ranks number eight in terms of visitation statistics for the Cayman Islands, and that Texas ranks third for new-diver certifications.
“I briefly mention these facts to underscore that the introduction of this seasonal service to Dallas plays a key strategic role in our ongoing quest to boost incremental tourism to the Cayman Islands. And while there can be little doubt that every new route to the Cayman Islands is good news for our tourism industry, I would be remiss if I did not also mention that it is also good news for our residents too!”
Bush added, “For what some would consider to be a small airline, I am exceedingly pleased to see how Cayman Airways has grown over the years from providing regional services to our Sister Islands to where it stands today – servicing six US gateways and four countries internationally.”
Whorms also noted that Dallas is part of the fourth largest metropolitan areas in the United States, and is the number one leisure and visitor destination in all of Texas. Additionally, he said, Cayman Airways is now the 21st passenger airline to serve DFW International Airport, which is the third busiest airport in the world. The Cayman Islands is also now the 49th international destination for DFW International Airport, thanks to Cayman Airways’ new nonstop service.
The ceremony at ORIA saw Cayman Airways staff wearing island-style cowboy hats with “Cayman” and “Dallas” ribbons. It also included Texas-style appetizers for passengers as well as an appearance by Sir Turtle.
To establish an endearing Cayman/Texas connection, Caymanian country music singer Andy Martin “The Cayman Cowboy” also joined Cayman Airways and government officials in the celebrations by serenading passengers with his original country music songs like “Cayman Cowboy” and “Hello Cayman Brac” as they waited to board the first nonstop flight to Dallas.
Also part of the in-flight entertainment was a raffle giveaway – passengers who correctly answered the question “How long has Cayman Airways been in service” entered to win a free roundtrip ticket for the new Cayman Airways Dallas route, and some lucky passengers also took home a free Andy Martin CD.
The festivities in Dallas on the return flight included a ribbon cutting ceremony organized by the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism and DFW International Airport officials. The ceremony included breakfast treats and commemorative Cayman Islands gifts for passengers. The airline received an honorary Water Cannon Salute on the tarmac upon its departure from ORIA as well as from DFW.
Cayman Airways’ seasonal nonstop flights to Dallas, Texas operate now through September 2nd, 2012, once a week. On Saturdays, KX320 departs Grand Cayman at 3:30pm and arrives in Dallas at 7:30pm. On Sundays, KX321 departs Dallas at 9am and arrives in Grand Cayman at 1pm.
(Photo: Premier McKeeva Bush, Sir Turtle and VP of Flight Operations Captain Dave Scott)
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