British Airways is headed for the Dutch Caribbean.
The British flag carrier is adding its first-ever service to the Dutch Caribbean island of Aruba next spring.
Beginning in March 2023, British Airways will be operating twice-weekly flights out of London Gatwick Airport.
The new service complements existing UK service to Aruba on TUI.
While the TUI service is only seasonal, British Airways will be flying to Aruba year round, with two weekly flights on Thursdays and Sundays.
The service is direct but not nonstop, with a brief stopover at Antigua’s VC Bird International Airport.
British Airways will be operating the service on Boeing 777-200ER aircraft with 32 Club seats, 52 World Traveller Plus seats and 252 economy seats.
The flight also opens up local connections to nearby Dutch Caribbean destinations like Bonaire and Curacao for British travelers.
In a statement, the Aruba Airport Authority said the new service was the product of nearly seven years of talks with British Airways.
“Another milestone for the island’s tourism industry with a direct year-round scheduled service between London Gatwick Airport and Aruba,” said Joost Meijs, CEO of the Aruba Airport Authority. “The introduction of this direct service is a goal we have long been working towards and we are thrilled that our air service development efforts have borne fruit. In a highly competitive arena, it is essential to have a direct year-round scheduled service and easy connections from major markets.”
The Airport Authority also announced that for this year, a total of almost 780,000 passengers were handled at Aruba’s Reina Beatrix International Airport.
That represents a recovery of nearly 91 percent compared to 2019.