2 Jun 2005

Polynesian Airlines loses passengers due to tighter immigration rules, says CEO

6:43 pm on 2 June 2005

Polynesian Airlines says it lost over 5,000 passengers on the inter-Samoa routes for March and April because of tighter immigration policies between the two Samoas.

Polynesian's acting CEO John K McNeely says March and April recorded the highest monthly reduction in passenger numbers between the two Samoas.

He says March saw a drop in excess of 2,000 passengers and in April, more than 3,200 passengers compared to the same time last year.

Mr McNeely notes that this has had serious repercussions on the airline's finances.

He says also many other travel services in both Samoas are also feeling the impact.

Mr McNeely says the tightening of immigration policies in both countries has made it harder for people to travel compared to previous times, where both islands were considered 'family,' and people traveled with relative ease.