The last remaining two jet aircraft from Cayman Airways’ Boeing 737-300 fleet have officially been retired from service to the Cayman Islands, marking another milestone in the National Airline’s current Fleet Modernization Plan - a plan that positioned Cayman Airways as having the newest jet fleet in the Caribbean after achieving the historic accolade in 2018 of being the first Caribbean-based airline to operate brand new state-of-the-art Boeing 737-8 aircraft.
Cayman Airways had operated 737-300 aircraft for three decades, with the last remaining aircraft, VP-CKW and VP-CKZ, being retired on October 18, 2021 and October 25, 2021 respectively. A special farewell send-off was held in the Cayman Airways hangar on October 25, 2021 in honour of both aircraft’s service to the Cayman Islands. It was attended by Cayman Airways board members, executives, employees, and government officials, including: the Cayman Islands Premier, the Hon. Wayne Panton; Minister for Tourism and Transport, the Hon. Kenneth Bryan; Ministry of Tourism and Transport’s Chief Officer, Mr. Stran Bodden; Member of Parlaiment, Mr. Isaac Rankine; Member of Parlaiment Mrs. Heather Bodden; Cayman Airways Board Members, Dr. John-Paul Clarke, Mr. Kris Bergstrom, Mr. Tyrone Welds, and Ms. Stefanie Ebanks; and Cayman Airways Executives, President and CEO Mr. Fabian Whorms, VP of Finance and Commercial Affairs Mr. Paul Tibbetts, and VP Flight Operations Capt. Dave Scott.
Everyone in attendance got the unique opportunity to write farewell messages and sign their names on the nose of VP-CKZ. Both farewell flights were flown by Captain Perry Panton and First Officer Geoffery Connolly to the Southern California Logistics Airport in Victorville, California, where they will be stored pending sale. After take-off, Captain Panton circled the aircraft back around for an approved fly-over and final salute to the Cayman Islands.
VP-CKZ operated its last passenger flight for Cayman Airways on June 26, 2021 from Cayman Brac to Grand Cayman, and VP-CKW’s last passenger flight was on May 17, 2021 from Cayman Brac to Grand Cayman.
Interesting facts about each aircraft include:
The Cayman Airways fleet now consists of three Boeing 737-8’s (VP-CIX, VP-CIY, and VP-CIW); along with two Saab 340B+ aircraft (VP-CKI and VP-CBR), and two Twin Otter aircraft (VP-CXA and VP-CXB) for Cayman Airways Express.
For our KXNews video report of this story, visit this link on our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EM96nbHFJdc
For photos of the farewell event, visit this album in the photo gallery on our website: https://www.caymanairways.com/farewell-to-the-b737-300-fleet