Haitian side of Port-au-Prince Airport

I was quite surprised how modern the departures area at Port-au-Prince International Airport appeared when I was returning home

at the end of July after my initial 3 months in Haiti. It was every bit as up-to-date as any small airport I have visited in the modern world. This came as a surprise to me compared to my experience at ‘arrivals’ only 3 months earlier. At that time I found the airport to be drab, not very welcoming and with very basic functionality.

As a would-be entrepreneur I was surprised about what seems to me a juxtaposition of the roles of these two areas within an airport.

From a promotional point of view I would have thought that creating a good first impression of Haiti for visitors would be a positive move and so if I had to choose as to where I would focus the best resources I would choose the arrivals area, so that my country of Haiti would impact new visitors as they enter the country for the first time.

Perhaps I am looking at the situation wrongly. Perhaps providing better facilities at departures ensures visitors to Haiti leave with a good ‘last impression’ of their experiences in the country and so they take home an urge to visit again. Whatever the reason behind the decision, my advice to anyone visiting or thinking of visiting the country is:

·         be open minded

·         don’t judge the book by the cover and

·         leave forming an opinion of the country till the end of your stay

because the diversity that is Haiti must be experienced to be appreciated.