Direct Jet Flights From US to BVI
BVI Airway's AVRO RJ Regional Jet
Some exciting news came through our inbox, recently. The FAA approved BVI Airway's application to conduct flights between the British Virgin Islands and the United States. That's huge.
BVI Airways is an airline that has served the British Virgin Islands for many years. It was rebooted in 2013 with plans to fly direct from Miami to Tortola. And with this FAA approval, it looks like the plan is going to be a reality.
In 2005, Tortola's Terrence B. Lettsome Airport (EIS), lengthened its runway, clearing the way for larger passenger planes. We still have never had direct service from the States (only from Puerto Rico).
BVI Airways purchased (or leased) several Avro RJ airplanes from Europe. These are 97-seat airplanes with a top speed around 500 miles an hour - a flight time from Miami to Tortola about 2 hours and 45 minutes. The planes will be piloted by ex-Royal Air Force pilots with experience in these airplanes.
It's significant because this is the first time we will have a competitor to the Miami-St. Thomas route. Currently, visitors to the BVI mostly fly to St. Thomas then ferry it over to Tortola (or Virgin Gorda, etc). Alternatively (and during the off season), visitors go through San Juan and fly on prop planes to Tortola/Beef Island/EIS.
Additionally, BVI Airways is rumored to be contemplating flights on the Avro RJ from New York's Kennedy airport direct to Tortola, about a five-hour flight.
Kudos to BVI Airways!