American Airlines is all set to become the first airline to resume commercial flights into Haiti, according to an announcement it made last night. The first flight will depart Miami International Airport at 6:40 am and arrive in Port-au-Prince at 8:35 am. Kayak lists airfare for that flight at $782 roundtrip.
According to a spokesperson for American, three flights a day will depart for Port-au-Prince from South Florida, with four flights a week from JFK in New York soon to follow.
The main airport in Port-au-Prince, damaged significantly by the 7.0 magnitude earthquake which struck January 12, has finally been repaired enough to begin acccepting commercial passengers. Haitian Customs will take place at a nearby cargo facility, however, because of damage to the main terminal.
Despite not sending commercial flights into Haiti until Friday, American has been flying humanitarian workers, supplies, and medical personnel into Port-au-Prince since the earthquake.
According to a senior official for American Airlines, the commercial flights which begin Friday “serve as major milestones toward helping the country rebuild… With commercial air service restored, we can better connect loved ones and provide consistent transportation to and from Haiti.”