Did Guyana ever have its own national airline?


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Tim Cook answered

This history of aviation in Guyana has its roots in the 1920s, but such trips as were made back then were solely internal, and relied on flying boats that could land upon rivers. The first airfield was established in Guyana in 1931 and this enabled airflight in Guyana to become more ambitious and organised. 

Guyana's own national airline

In 1938, an American, Arthur Williams, an aviator active for most of the 1930s in Guyana, formed a partnership with John Henry Hunter from Britain (Guyana was British colony until 1966). 

They registered a private company known as the British Guiana Airways Limited, but the company struggled financially at first and so applied for, and gained, subsidies from the colonial government. The outbreak of World War Two saw an increased demand in the airlines' services.

A Change of Owner, Then A Change of Name

In 1955, the colonial government bought out the privateers and British Guiana had its own national airline. The name of the airline was shortened to Guyana Airways in 1963 and continued to provide regular flights to the USA, Canada and the various Caribbean nations, using Cheddi Jagan international airport, near the city of Timehri, as its hub.

Guyana Airways hit financial turbulence however and was declared bankrupt in 1999. Its successor, Guyana Air 2000, followed suit in 2003. The leading airline for Guyana is now the privately owned Trans Guyana Airlines. 

Many of the first domestic flights in Guyana centered around the Kaieteur Falls, and was a popular trip for tourists to make. Here's someone following in their slipstream in 2012:


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