Puerto Rico Governor Anibal Acevedo Vila told media Monday about the passing of a law to expand his administration’s Cruise Incentive Program, which allocates a yearly $10 million fund for the development of Puerto Rico’s maritime industry. If the expansion results in a 20 percent increase in cruise arrivals by June 30, 2011, Vila told media at an ACTS press conference, these incentives will automatically be extended to June 30, 2014.
The Puerto Rico Tourism Company also announced more details about a plan to replace about half of the flights Puerto Rico will lose when American Airlines and American Eagle’s suspension of flights takes effect in September. Airlines, including JetBlue, Air Tran, Continental and Delta, have added service to Puerto Rico from such major cities as New York, Boston, Newark, Orlando and Fort Lauderdale. The dates of the flights haven’t been announced yet, but some are slated to begin in September, overlapping with the date of the suspended flights by American, Vila says. The September suspension of flights by some major carriers, including American Airlines and American Eagle, represents a 20 percent reduction (1.2 million seats) to Puerto Rico and a 20 percent reduction (1.4 million seats) to the Caribbean as a whole. Puerto Rico has also been in talks with Spirit Airlines to reach an agreement that will result in additional flights between San Juan, Orlando and New York.