- Norwegian’s proposed T/A service endorsed by US tourism chief Roger Dow
- Most powerful man in US inbound tourism backs NAI
- US carriers grow at 2pc
- US travel has targetted 7pc growth
- USA facing a pilot shortage
- Norwegian wil bring a different type of traveller
Roger Dow, CEO of the US Travel Assocation has come out in favour of NAI’s application for approval to fly trans-Atnbatlic routes from Cork and Shannon to Boston.
The application has apparently been fillibustered since approval was granted in April.
Answering a public question from Travel Extra at a press conference during IPW in New Orleans, Mr Dow stated:
Norwegian Air has been trying to get access flying under the Irish flag. The reason they do that is that they have access to safety rules and all that in the EU.
Our US pilots association has come out against them. Finally, through a lot of pushing and working with the US Department of Transportations they gained approval in April to fly to the US which we thought was well and good. The opposition has surfaced again to try and block them.
Our position and my position is that we are facing a pilot shortage in the United States.
If you look in the cockpit of any overseas flight most of the pilots look like meand they are going to be retiring.
We have a shortage of new pilots. The argument that it is going to hit the pilots does not hold water for me.
The reason we are excited about Norwegian is that they bring a whole group of travellers who may not have been able to come here at full cost.
We are growing international travel by 7pc. Make no mistake about it, I want our US carriers to be extremely healthy and vibrant and grow but their stated growth is only at 2pc
You don’t have to me a mathematician to figure out that if you are only growing at 2pc and the travel industry is growing at 7pc we have a problem down the road.
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