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Sixth US airline to stop flying to Cuba in a year

By Marion Ali, Assistant Editor

Alaska Airlines has become the sixth United States carrier in a year to cut its flights to Cuba.

The airline, based in Seattle Washington, confirmed this week that that its last flight to Cuba will be on January 22, 2018.

The decision came after a steady decline in business to the island, with Alaska Air having had problems to fill its seats for several months.

US President Donald Trump’s travel restrictions that took effect two weeks ago, banning American tourists from visiting several Cuban businesses and companies, is seen as a major reason why the carrier has lost business in Cuba.

Hurricane Maria, which passed Cuba in September, causing damage, is also blamed partially for the poor business.

Spokesman for Alaska Air, Bobbie Egan has said that business started slow in January with barely half the flights full. Business improved to around 85 percent by April, but as the summer ended, bookings fell again.

Alaska Airline’s departure follows previous ones by Southwest, Spirit, Frontier, Silver and American Airways in the past year.

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