Tremendous drop in tourism in Cuba: TUI airline will no longer fly to Varadero due to lack of passengers

The decision will also be extended to flights from Belgium and the Netherlands (Holland) due to the decrease in demand to the destination Cuba.

Aeronave de la compañía TUI ©
TUI company aircraft Photo ©

The airline TUI, leader in vacation travel in Europe, announced the definitive suspension of its flights to the Cuban resort ofVaradero from Amsterdam, the capital ofNetherlands.

The decision responds to the alarming lack of demand and the consequent absence of passengers to fill the planes to the Caribbean island,and will also extend to theflights from Belgium due to the decrease in demand towards the destination Cuba.

A spokesman for the German group TUI (Tourism Union International) confirmed the cancellation of flights from Schiphol airport in Amsterdam to Varaderostarting mid-may, depending on the

Passengers affected by this cancellation will be informed personally by TUI or by the travel agencies where they made their reservations. In addition, they will be offered the possibility of being rebooked on other flights or receiving a full refund.

This provision will also impact flights scheduled for the next winter season, with no concrete plans to resume this route in the near future.

The low demand for Cuba is attributed to various factors, includingthe economic crisis that the country is going through, the political situation and travel restrictions imposed by some nations.

Specifically,the elimination by the United States of the visa exemption for travelers who have been in Cuba has created a longer and more expensive process to obtain a visa, which discourages European tourists.

This situation is having a negative impact on the Cuban tourism sector, which largely depends on foreign visitors. The cancellation of flights to Varadero joins other similar measures that TUI has taken in recent months, evidencing a worrying trend for tourism in the region.

Before the coronavirus crisis, other airlines such as KLM also operated flights to Cuba from Schiphol Airport, but those services have not been restored since, showing a significant decrease in air connectivity with the island.

For Benelux travelers, Frankfurt and Paris are emerging as the closest alternatives to flying directly to Cuba. However, these options involve considerably longer travel times compared to the direct flights previously offered by TUI.

Last December, the TUI group announced that its airlinewould abandon its direct service from Manchester to the Cuban resort of Varadero next year.

This service, the only direct option to Cuba from the United Kingdom, would maintain the usual service in the winter months that were approaching, but its programming to the island would cease at the end of April 2024, according to the media.Travel Weekly.

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