2024 Travel News ArchiveTravel

Open skies agreement with US coming soon

Once the 19 May 2024 presidential election is over, the country will most likely witness the signing of a free skies agreement with the United States. The present agreement limits the airports Dominican airlines can fly into.

When in Washington, D.C. on 8 May 2024 to receive the Americas Society/Council of the Americas Leadership Award, President Luis Abinader announced the completion of negotiations with the United States for the signing of the Open Skies Agreement. The main objective of the agreement is to generate a greater climate of competition in commercial aviation.

As reported in El Dia, President Abinader said the agreement would be signed in the coming days now that the negotiation process that has lasted years due to its multiple implications is finalized. He said the agreement clauses had to be reconciled with the players in the aviation sector in both the DR and the United States.

“We are ready to sign,” said the President when speaking with journalists upon his arrival in Washington to receive the recognition at the 54th Conference of the Americas, an event that brought together several leading corporations doing business in Latin America and the Caribbean.

President Abinader stated that the restrictions on competition in commercial aviation with the United States have been one of the historical factors that has influenced the high prices of air tickets. The high prices impact the Dominican diaspora that lives in the United States. New York in population is considered the second largest Dominican city.

Abinader explained that under a modern open skies agreement, airlines can offer more affordable air services to consumers given that the limitations for airlines to establish routes between the countries involved are minimized.

President Abinader said the agreement could be signed soon after the presidential and congressional elections scheduled for 19 May 2024.

As reported in El Dia, the United States Embassy has lobbied on behalf of the United States government in favor of the signing. The US sees it will open up service with more options to passengers between both destinations.

The President explained that in addition to increasing US airline routes, Dominican airlines would no longer have restrictions regarding the places they can fly to in the United States. The promise is the agreement would mean Dominican travelers will enjoy new flight options, lower fares and better service as the airlines compete for Dominican passengers.

US travelers will also benefit, and traveling to the Dominican Republic will be cheaper as tourists will be able to fly from a larger number of cities in the United States.

The draft of the agreement is not known to the general public nor the reasons/clauses it may include that are why the governments have taken so long to sign. Only the advantages are known.

Overall, the Dominican Republic, since the days the late Fernando Rainieri was Secretary of Tourism (1986-1990), has voted “yes” to open skies. This is the key to the outstanding development of the country as a leading global destination.

The Dominican Republic has numerous free aviation agreements signed with numerous countries.

Read more in Spanish:
El Dia

14 May 2024