Grisha announces return of Air Caraibes from Orly, Paris to SXM in December

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Minister of TEATT Grisha Heyliger-Marten (R, facing monitor) with her Chef de Cabinet, Regina LaBega, during the Teams meeting Friday, with officials of Air Caraibes.

 

GREAT BAY Starting from December 6, 2024, Air Caraibes, with its state-of-the-art Airbus A330-200, will launch a new direct service from Orly Airport (ORY) to Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM), said TEATT Minister Grisha Heyliger-Marten on Monday. 

The Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Traffic and Telecommunication (TEATT) also said that Air Caraibes is offering a limited-time special promotional fare of €640 to celebrate the inauguration of the new route. “This is an attractive option for both leisure and business travelers,” said Minister Heyliger-Marten. 

The Minister held an online (Teams) meeting with officials of Air Caraibes during which plans were finalized for the launch of the new service. According to the Minister, Air Caraibes has strategically planned a later departure time for this service to optimize connectivity for passengers, thus further cementing SXM’s hub function. 

The schedule adjustment aligns with the airline’s interline agreements, enabling seamless connections for travelers from Europe and elsewhere.

Heyliger-Marten emphasized the importance of this new route in attracting travelers from key markets such as Guadeloupe, Martinique, and the broader Caribbean region. In line with this vision, Air Caraibes is set to acquire the ATR aircraft in 2025, with plans to include SXM in its expanded network.

“This new direct service to Orly, Paris offers enhanced connectivity for students, residents, and tourists alike,” the Minister stated. “Direct flights with optimal connections to the Netherlands and other European destinations will greatly benefit the traveling public,” she added.

“The recent discontinuation of direct service by another airline from Guadeloupe presents an opportunity for St. Maarten to serve as a central hub for passengers traveling to the United States and Canada,” noted Heyliger-Marten, stressing that “the introduction of the fifth ATR aircraft by Air Caraibes will not compete with or diminish the market share of Grand Case Airport.”

Next month, Minister Heyliger-Marten will engage in further discussions with Air Caraibes to explore the potential for establishing up to 12 weekly services to SXM. 

The minister will also review the air service development and marketing budget of the Ministry, to ensure robust partnerships and effective utilization of resources that will support these initiatives. She will specifically look at the budget to identify joint marketing opportunities which will enhance the new routes’ viability and attractiveness.

For its part, Air Caraibes reaffirmed its strong partnership and joint venture with Winair, underscoring a commitment to collaborative growth in the region. Having previously served SXM, Air Caraibes said it looks forward to reinstating its services and contributing to the island’s economic and tourism development.