US and Dominican Republic Conclude Open Skies Agreement, Boosting Tourism and Competition

The United States and the Dominican Republic have successfully concluded negotiations for an open skies agreement, as announced by the US Department of State. This landmark agreement marks the culmination of 25 years of discussions aimed at improving the bilateral open skies agreement. The primary objective is to lower airfares, enhance market competitiveness, and streamline tourism between the two nations.

The finalization of a memorandum of consultations signifies the formal end of the negotiation process. Both governments will now work together to formalize and implement the new deal.

The Dominican Republic has experienced a surge in tourism, emerging as the second most visited destination in Latin America in 2023, trailing only Mexico, according to Statista. A report by Airinsight highlighted that over 10 million travelers visited the Dominican Republic, with 7.3 million arriving by air. The United States was the leading source of tourists, contributing 48% of all air arrivals.

Currently, nine US-based airlines connect the two countries: American Airlines, Avelo Airlines, Frontier Airlines, Delta Air Lines, JetBlue Airways, Spirit Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, and United Airlines. Two Dominican carriers, RED Air and Sky High Dominicana, also operate flights between the nations. The open skies agreement will allow these airlines to expand their flights without limitations.

Furthermore, Arajet, a low-cost carrier from the Dominican Republic, plans to launch flights to the United States, benefiting from the new agreement to enter the market. This agreement is expected to significantly boost tourism and air travel between the two nations, facilitating greater connectivity and affordability for travelers.

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