Caribbean Airlines (CAL) is denying that there was only one plane flying the domestic route from July 20-23.
The allegation was made by Tobago House of Assembly (THA) member Farley Augustine, who accused CAL of being disrespectful towards its domestic customers with what he said was a practice of perennial poor service. During the recent Minority Council bi-monthly media briefing, Augustine reported that over that particular weekend people were stranded at the airport because there was only one plane to service the route.
Speaking with Newsday Tobago by phone on Monday, CAL corporate communications manager Dionne Ligoure said: “It would be incorrect to say that Caribbean Airlines only had one plane operating on the route for that period. CAL has 17 planes and we can deploy any plane to any route as we see fit.
"What happened is that people were having issues as the standby list was closed,” she said.
She said CAL continues to closely manage the airbridge and adjusts its schedule as required to facilitate seamless travel between Trinidad and Tobago.
“From time to time, due to the large number of persons who arrive at the airport without tickets and without confirmed bookings, the airline closes the standby list to better control the inventory. You would agree that this is prudent in order to manage numbers and customer expectations as the airline would not want to place persons on a standby list and thereafter be unable to accommodate them,” she said.
Ligoure added that for the July/August peak period, the airline has already looked at the number of proposed events carded to take place in Tobago and has planned its schedule accordingly.
“Admittedly, from time to time, as is the case with airlines anywhere in the world, operational and other issues like weather, which are outside of the control of the airline, may arise that cause delays,” she said.