When REDjet first came into the marketplace, everyone was talking about how it was so badly needed to set up competition for LIAT so that the fares wouldn’t be so high. And for a time, LIAT’s fares dropped and people enthusiastically returned to inter-island travel.
Now that REDjet is gone, of course LIAT’s prices have jumped back up. In March (when REDjet was still flying) I began planning a trip to St Vincent from Antigua, and checked the fares with LIAT. The total for two people to travel round-trip was a reasonable US $450.
Unfortunately, this was too far in advance of my planned travel, so I chose to wait. Last week, I checked the fares. The total had almost doubled, to US $899.
This exorbitant 100 per cent increase came over a period of only three months, but of course they were key months since REDjet had shut down operations and eliminated the threat of competition.
I think this is a great illustration of why we need another airline in the Caribbean.