Published On: Fri, Sep 22nd, 2017

PAWA Dominicana is connecting the Caribbean; an interview with Simeon Garcia (1)

P1080596SANTO DOMINGO, WILLEMSTAD - The Dominican Republic is one of the fastest growing economies in the region. It is the ninth largest in Latin America and the largest in the Caribbean. Of course with such an economy, the country needs a reliable and strong airline. That is where PAWA Dominicana comes in.

Since two years PAWA Dominicana has been the international flag carrier of the Dominican Republic.

We asked Mr. Garcia what is the secret to PAWA’s success. He immediately responded: “The secret to our success is the way we treat our customers.” That was also confirmed by some of the employees who indicated that since the beginning of the airline, Mr. Garcia told them that the passenger, the flying costumer comes first.

“We see the entire Caribbean as our market. The Dominican Republic is our base of course because a lot of people live there. Not only are there a lot of people in the Dominican Republic but a lot of Dominicans live outside their country,” said Garcia. About three hundred thousand live in the Caribbean. They are basically PAWA’s success, they need to travel to the Dominican Republic and back to the country where they live.

‘There is an emotional connection of the Dominicans with their country and they fly with PAWA because it is the Dominican flag carrier.”

Another success factor for the airline is that it is operating with the highest performance standards. The president of PAWA Dominicana sought as a business strategy to differentiate his company from other airlines, focusing a lot on meeting the punctuality of his flights and the quality of the service, to win the confidence of the traveler.

P1080611PAWA Dominicana is flying with the highest performance standards: On-time performance of 80%.

The airline’s growth in the number of passengers is also remarkable. In 2015 the airline transported about 3,000 passengers. In 2016 it grew all the way to 117,729 passengers for the entire year. Now in 2017, until July, the airline has transported 175,521 passengers. PAWA expects to transport about 300,000 passengers by the end of this year.

That is quite an achievement for an airline that has been around for only two years. The passengers can also see it in the faces of the employees. The number of employees has grown extensively. In 2015 the company started with 185 employees. Now in 2017, there are about 480 employees working directly for the airline.

Recently the new CEO of the company Gary Stone announced three more routes for the airline. These are Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago and New York. Currently, the airline is serving 8 destinations, St. Maarten, San Juan, Havana, Port-au-Prince, Curaçao, Aruba, Antigua and Miami. Next year the airline will add the three new destinations into its itinerary.

Curaçao

What can PAWA Dominicana mean for Curaçao?

“We are an agent of macro-economic growth. The exchange between the Dominican Republic and the other regions like Curaçao and also Aruba and Bonaire are very important to us. For example we are thinking about a multi destination vacation. Or what I would like to call a Caribbean passport. With this passport or ticket, a traveler can visit various destinations with PAWA. They come to the Dominican Republic stay for a few days and we will take them to Curaçao for example,” said Garcia.

This is just an example of the many possibilities there are. “We are also working on offering Curaçao a better connection to various destinations in the Caribbean. This is important for the economy of the island.”

Future

The future of PAWA Dominicana is bright. There are already talks about more destinations, larger fleet, bigger aircraft, better service and more. “Our relationship with the governments of both the Dominican Republic and Curaçao is getting better. We are able to show them what we can mean for their economy,” said Simeon Garcia.

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