November 23, 2004
  • Spirit begins flights
  • DR to 87 tourism travel fairs
  • Another surcharge on airfare?
  • DR-Haiti Ecotourism fair
Spirit begins flights
Spirit flew its inaugural flight to the DR on Friday, 19 November, arriving from Fort Lauderdale to Las Americas International Airport in Santo Domingo. The airline promises to maintain the lowest rates on the Santo Domingo-Florida-connection. Spirit is posting a US$69 fare plus taxes and airport surcharges. Spirit offers connections to Atlantic City (New Jersey), Chicago, Las Vegas, Fort Myers, Myrtle Beach Orlando, Tampa, West Palm Beach (Florida), New York City, Detroit, Providence (Rhode Island), Los Angeles (California) and Washington, D.C. in the US. Internationally, it flies to Cancun, Mexico; Nassau, Bahamas; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and Providence, Turks & Caicos. Spirit is contemplating adding flights to Puerto Plata and Punta Cana airports in the future.
DR to 87 tourism travel fairs
Tourism Minister Felix Jimenez said that the DR would participate in 87 international travel fairs next year. He highlighted the DR needs to be present in its source markets and likewise participate in specialized niche market fairs such as those targeting golf, scuba diving and culture groups. He mentioned that the country has plans to market itself in eastern European countries and in Brazil in 2005.
Jimenez announced the country would target these groups with spots on a radio and TV campaigns in the US, Europe (UK, Spain, France and Italy).
Leading travel fairs in which the Ministry is organizing the Dominican participation include: Fitur (Spain), Bit (Italy), Anato (Colombia), CHA Marketplace (Jamaica), Apple Vacation Trade Show (New York), ITB Berlin (Germany), MITT, Leisure and UIT (Russia), ABAV, Brazil; FIT (Argentina); Top Resa (France); JATA (Japan); SITV (Montreal), TUR 2005 (Sweden).
Another surcharge on airfare?
Tourism Minister Felix Jimenez told the Spanish press that a surcharge of US$5 may be added to airfares as of February 2005, as reported in Diario Libre. The money would become part of a fund for the construction of infrastructure and improvements in beaches in tourism areas in the north, northeast and southeast. A two-year time limit would be set for the tax.
DR-Haiti Ecotourism fair
President Boniface Alexandre and Tourism Minister Danielle Saint-Lot of Haiti were present for the opening of the First Binational Ecotourism Fair in the Haitian border town Fonds Parisien. Speaking at the opening, President Alexandre highlighted the common interests of both countries.
The fair opened 20 November and will continue through 5 December.
Niky Fabiancic, representative of the United Nations in the DR, also participated in the opening of the fair.
Attending to represent the Dominican government was Environment Minister Max Puig. For Puig, the fair is a concrete step towards the strengthening of ties and development of the peoples of Haiti and the Dr. He said the fair seeks to bolster the awareness of the importance of nature conservancy of the island and to serve as a platform for the designing of joint conservation plans.
The fair can be visited during the day from the Dominican Republic by driving 14 kilometers west of the Jimani border point. Activities are taking place in the environs of the Lake Azuei in Haiti, a twin to Enriquillo Lake in the DR.
Jose Serulle Ramia, president of the Fundacion Ciencia y Arte, is the organizer of the event. He has been organizing ecotourism fairs in the lesser-known ecotouristic areas of the Dominican Republic for over 10 years now. This is the first time he organizes a similar event in Haiti.
Serulle describes his fairs as “an ode to nature in the name of human development.” “The fair seeks to turn the entire island into an ecotourism destination and we have to cooperate so that Haiti begins to move away from its backward stage and poverty,” he told Hoy newspaper.

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