Jetting To Venezuela Just Got Harder: Why American Is Slashing Flights

Jul 4, 2014

FEWER FLIGHTS: An American Airlines aircraft at Caracas' Simon Bolivar Airport.
Credit Simon_sees / Flickr/

It’s going to get even tougher to find a seat on a flight to Venezuela now. International airlines are cutting if not ending their service to the South American country. And that now includes the major U.S. carrier  – American Airlines.

Starting this month, American is slashing the number of flights to Venezuela from the U.S. by 80 percent. From 48 per week to just 10. Those 10 remaining flights will all be from Miami, which has the largest Venezuelan community in the U.S. Before this month, American had offered four daily flights from Miami to Caracas. That’s been cut to one, with one extra on Saturdays and two per week to Maracaibo.

Oil-rich Venezuela is suffering one of its worst economic crises. Its dollar reserves are dwindling. So the socialist government is dragging its feet when it comes to paying airlines the hard currency Venezuela owes them for ticket sales there. American is waiting for more than $750 million.