British Airways has announced a new twice-weekly Gatwick-Montego Bay route.
Flights to the Jamaican holiday hotspot will get under way from 13 October, departing Tuesdays and Saturdays.
BA will operate the route using a three-cabin Boeing 777 aircraft – World Traveller, World Traveller Plus and Club World.
Fares lead in from £427pp return (hand baggage only), and are on sale now.
The service will operate over the winter until Easter 2021.
Elsewhere in the Caribbean, BA resumed flights to Barbados on Saturday (18 July) and Kingston on Monday (20 July). It will relaunch Saint Lucia flights on Saturday (25 July) and Antigua on 1 August, albeit at lower frequencies that pre-Covid.
Diane Corrie, BA’s commercial manager for the Caribbean, said: “We’re excited to be extending our network once again between Gatwick and the Caribbean with the start of this new flight to Montego Bay in October, as well as resuming our services to Antigua, Barbados, Kingston and Saint Lucia.
“We know people are keen to travel, and the sunshine and beaches across the Caribbean combined with great resorts and entertainment makes it a winning destination."
Colin Pegler, chair of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation’s UK and Europe chapter, added the organisation was "greatly encouraged" by BA’s return to the Caribbean.
"As one of the Caribbean’s most crucial and long-standing flight partners, we are delighted to see such endorsement from our national carrier.
"It is vital to the region, our tour operator, hotel and destination partners that the resumption of airlift is quick and comprehensive as we look forward to welcoming tourists once more.”
BA flight 2265 will depart Gatwick on Tuesdays and Saturdays at 12.20pm arriving Montego Bay at 5.30pm. BA flight 2264 will return on Tuesdays and Saturdays, departing Montego Bay at 7.30pm, arriving at Gatwick at 9.25am the following day.
New BA safety measures include encouraging online check-in, digital boarding passes and self-scanning at departure gates; observing social distancing and practising good hand hygiene; wearing of face masks pre-flight and in-flight and carrying replacements; and PPE for cabin crew, among other changes to service to meet new Covid health and safety requirements.
Donovan White, the Jamaica Tourist Board’s director of tourism, added: “During these unprecedented times, Jamaica has implemented robust health protocols to ensure the wellbeing of all residents and visitors.
"As an incredibly popular Caribbean destination, with over 225,000 Brits visiting each year, we look forward to welcoming even more British visitors."
Simon Foster, deputy managing director of Unique Caribbean Holidays Ltd (UCHL), tour operator for Sandals and Beaches Resorts in the UK, said: “The news announced today about British Airways resuming its direct flights from London to Montego Bay in October after a nine-year hiatus is the best news we’ve had for weeks.
"It’s not just exciting news for our business but for Jamaica as a destination.
"Montego Bay is where the Sandals Resorts brand was born almost 40 years ago and where we operate the most properties – currently six Sandals Resorts and two Beaches Resorts.
"This truly is welcome news as it will give us a great to transport more holidaymakers from the UK and Europe to the island and our hotels with British Airways, complementing the existing Kingston route."