June 11, 2004 – Travelers between New York and the territory will have another option on Saturdays, effective this weekend.
U.S. Airways will be providing direct, non-stop flights from New York's La Guardia Airport to St. Thomas and back. Those arriving at Cyril E. King Airport on Saturday's inaugural flight will be greeted with a reception organized by the Tourism Department that will feature steelpan music and a formal presentation to the plane's pilot and crew.
Tourism Commissioner Pamela Richards said on Friday that the department worked with U.S. Airways for two years to make the flight a reality. "I think it has a significant impact for both availability and access to both leisure and business travel," she said.
Richards said other carriers such as American Airlines already have direct, nonstop flights between New York and St. Thomas. However, according to the Travelocity Web site, while American, Continental, Delta and United also provide service, only USAir has nonstop flights out of La Guardia both the new Saturday service and existing daily flights.
The new USAir flight is scheduled to leave La Guardia at 8:45 a.m. each Saturday and arrive on St. Thomas at 12:49 p.m. The return flight is to leave St. Thomas at 1:55 p.m. and arrive in New York at 5:50 p.m. The Airbus A319 aircraft has a seating capacity of 124 persons.
According to the USAir Web site, the round-trip fair is $567.50.
Richards said the schedule is expected to remain in place through the fall. Calls to airline representatives on Friday were not returned.
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