News that Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA) has opened a transit corridor (see Saturday edition) was most welcome. This is to reduce the long queues of incoming travellers having to wait outside before passing through Immigration, by separating those in transit.
Management said it had listened to the people after several complaints about passengers standing in line up to an hour or more under a hot sun and even getting wet when it rained. That situation had been illustrated at the time with a photo on the front page of this newspaper and deemed unacceptable in an accompanying editorial.
Solving the issue was obviously never easy, with only 35 per cent of the damaged building in use. Some things were done since to alleviate the problem, but not with the kind of impact this latest move is expected to have.
As it looks like the destination may go through two more high seasons of 2020/2021 and 2021/2022 until the terminal’s reconstruction can be completed, making the best of the current circumstances in the meantime is essential to keep the island’s tourism economy on track.
The guests’ vacation experience begins and ends at the airport, so ensuring that their arrivals and departures are as convenient, hassle-free and comfortable as possible despite the current physical limitations must remain top priority while the facility is being fully restored to its former glory.