Flight requests to St Maarten take off despite travel restrictions

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Juliana Airport says in its latest press release that travel demands to St Maarten are increasing despite travel restrictions due to the epidemic, demonstrating "that the preventive measures taken against Covid-19 since January 2020 have brought their fruits ”. Access to the terminal will only be granted to passengers and airport staff

“Staff at Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA) continue to be responsive to the emergency to combat the coronavirus.”

For a period of three months, Juliana was partially operational, following travel restrictions put in place by the government of St. Maarten to maintain measures to protect the public and its visitors.

All commercial travel has been halted, but the airport has maintained non-commercial flights: freight, emergencies and repatriations.

According to Juliana's management, “a Covid-19 prevention plan has been established and has been submitted for execution by the COVID-19 Task Force, together with the SXM Airport Board of Directors. The efforts made are in line with the resumption of commercial flights and the expected influx of travelers. ”

Juliana Airport intends to leverage short, medium and long-haul flights from its key markets to drive growth in the region.

The C-19 plan is governed by the “precautionary principle” in order to minimize the risk of infection

PJIAE's prevention plan C-19 will also serve to protect the human resources of the airport community, and to train them in new safety measures at their workplace.

PJIAE has installed over forty (40) plexiglass protective screens in areas such as check-in counters, boarding gates, passport control and information desk to reduce risk and offer a safe environment for frontline staff and passengers.

The transport of passengers by bus on the tarmac will also be subject to preventive measures, with more frequent cleaning and disinfection.

“We are going to implement different levels of prevention such as non-contact temperature control, the wearing of compulsory masks and the installation of additional hand disinfectants, among the set of newly implemented measures.

Strict security policies also require that all personnel on the front line wear two (2) types of protective masks: respiratory and surgical. FFP2 respiratory masks will offer an advanced level of protection due to direct contact with travelers.

In addition, surgical masks should effectively reduce the transmission of respiratory droplets.

Task Force Chairman Connally Connor added: “Access to the interior of the terminal will only be granted to passengers and airport staff. We will also step up disinfection methods in high-point-of-contact areas to reduce soiled or contaminated surfaces. The Task Force also ensures that disinfectants will be present in the ventilation system. The thermal control for staff and passengers will also come into effect immediately on the date of reopening ”. (Editor's note: Wednesday 1er July).

Although the latest forecast from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) indicates that the airline industry will lose billions of dollars due to the pandemic, Juliana's management has long established that there is a constant demand for travel to our various destinations, which is confirmed by the number of time slot reservations requested by North American carriers.

According to the latest COVID-19 statistical information from the St. Maarten Department of Public Health, there are no active cases on the island. On Friday June 19, 2020, our Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications (TEATT), Ludmilla de Weever, announced that the airport will be fully operational from July 1, 2020.

Juliana clarified that if you would like to report any dangers and risks associated with COVID-19, you should call the SXM Airport Helpline at 1-721-546-7504 or 1-721-5467508 or send your comments by e-mail to safety@sxmairport.com. General information should be directed to the new COVID-19 hotline at 9777 or visit the website www.sxmairport.com and click on the COVID-19 tab for any updates.

Editor's notes:

In the information and prevention leaflet below provided by Juliana, the first point concerning the RT-PCR test (nasal swab) carried out at most 72 hours before arrival in St. Maarten was initially "Recommended" only, which surprised many readers of Faxinfo and the Dutch Side press.

This mention has fortunately been modified on this notice, and now this test before the trip and which must be negative of course, will be " necessary " (why not say mandatory?). We can bet that at the airport of departure, airlines will also impose this prior test on their passengers and that people who cannot prove a negative test will remain in their country.

On the other hand, this test 72 hours before arrival, is not yet mandatory from Paris for flights to the Antilles… which is very surprising.

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