MIAMI — Although the headline of this story may sound like an urban dystopia, it actually happened yesterday in La Guaira, Venezuela, the city where the country’s main airport is located.
A sudden collapse of a bridge that connects the airport with the area where Iberia’s crew overnights, forced them to take a boat to reach the Simón Bolívar International Airport (CCS) instead of their usual crew bus.
The airport, considered to be the main gateway of the Latin American country, has been struggling with decreased traffic and many international carriers dropping services because of poor service, a deteriorating economy and endless political woes.
— Maria Alesia Sosa (@MariaAlesiaSosa) January 25, 2017
Iberia’s crew finally reached the airport, and Iberia flight IB6674 to Madrid departed Caracas almost three hours behind schedule.
Once a coveted destination among flight crews due to its its warm weather, low cost of living and safe streets, Venezuela has become a destination to avoid.
Recently, United Airlines changed the schedule of its Houston – Caracas flights to cease layovers in the capital city of Venezuela due to “increasing security concerns.”
Similarly, American Airlines has two back-to-back flights between Caracas and Miami, keeping its crew away from spending the night in the city.
Since 2014, a myriad of international carriers have canceled their flights to Caracas, including Air Canada, Aeromexico, Alitalia, GOL, LATAM and Lufthansa, due to economic difficulties related to the repatriation of funds in foreign currency, arising from the sale of passenger tickets and cargo space in Bolivars, the local currency.
Last Monday, Air Canada filed an arbitration proceeding against the government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela over funds trapped in the country equivalent to 35 million dollars.
The news of Iberia’s crew taking a boat to reach the airport has become viral in Venezuela, with endless comments mocking the situation and putting shame on the country’s never-ending crisis.