We are trying to plan another return visit. Last year, after we changed our tickets from AJ to Us Airways (to Aruba), I went to Bonaire Express's web site and booked our Aruba to Bonaire tickets - no problem. This year I cannot even FIND a functioning Bonaire Express website (which makes me nervous about even using them as I'm still owed money by DCA who stick us on tickets several years ago).
Let me propose a suggestion for the web site. Most travel-related web sites have FAQ information posted and available at the beginning of links like 'Getting to Bonaire' (see fliertalk.com for a very good example). Can someone provide the link to a FUNCTIONING Bonaire Express (Excel, whatever) site - or tell me that none exist. Same for Divi Divi and other services if they exist - including charters from Aruba.
And, since I'm asking, could all the discussion about charter flights from North America be organized to sort the wheat from the chaff, so to speak? The airlift site states the first flight began two weeks ago, which clearly was not the case.
Although the Continental Flights are an improvement, what do you do when one arrives in Bonaire at dawn and cannot check into their resort until mid-afternoon? Sure, AJ has reinstated service, but ultimately cut the number of flights to the island and remains financially wobbly - at best. And now, again, possible trouble with the major inter-island server? Bonaire is a wonderful place to be, but lately not so much fun getting to. If the island's tourist industry is to be preserved or expanded, more attention needs to be paid to facilitating air service to the island.
Note: the following is a bit of a rant.
Also, please no sour grapes replies about how 'lovely Bonaire is and to keep it that way we want to make it difficult to get to' and only the pure will survive the trip tribulations and other such silly nonsense (like I got last year when I was the first to warned that AJ was having trouble). Fact is access to the island likely is not the issue, especially given the island's birth rate and the fragile nature of its resources. If Bonaire wants to preserve the Quality of Life on the island, its citizens need to develop and then implement a professional comprehensive land use plan. The Netherlands is famous for producing quality land use plans, so the example is available. (And yes, I am a city and regional planner, so I know something about this topic.)