Silver Airways and Frontier Airlines will halt flights to Cuba due to inadequate demand, the carriers said on Monday.

Florida-based Silver, which flies to nine Cuban destinations from Fort Lauderdale, will suspend those services on April 22. Frontier will halt its Miami-Havana service on June 4.

"Costs in Havana to turn an aircraft significantly exceeded our initial assumptions," Frontier spokesman Jim Faulkner wrote in an email. He added that "market conditions have failed to materialize there."

Frontier launched the daily flight on Dec. 1.

Silver has been flying to Santa Clara, Camaguey, Cayo Coco, Cayo Largo, Cienfuegos, Manzanillo, Varadero, Holguin and Santiago de Cuba since the fall on 34-seat Saab 340B twin-propeller planes.

The carrier said Monday that passenger counts on all airlines to Cuba are in line with what it had expected. But Silver criticized competitors for operating large aircraft on secondary routes, indicating that excess capacity prevented Silver from running its service profitably.

American, Southwest and JetBlue are among the carriers that fly to secondary Cuban cities.

"It is not in the best interest of Silver and its team members to behave in the same irrational manner as other airlines," spokeswoman Misty Pinson wrote. "However, Silver will continue to monitor Cuba routes and will consider resuming service in the future if the commercial environment changes."

Pinson also said that distribution through OTAs and codeshare agreements has been unavailable since the commencement of service, hurting demand.

"Now, six months later, this issue is still not fully resolved, resulting in depressed demand," she wrote.

Commercial air travel between the U.S. and Cuba resumed last August for the first time since the onset of the U.S. trade embargo against the island nation in the 1960s. Flights between the U.S. and Havana began in November. 


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