The Caribbean Beat archive

Three airlines, one magazine

Caribbean Beat was launched in January 1992 as the inflight magazine of BWIA (British West Indian Airways), the Trinidad & Tobago-based airline founded in November 1940. The magazine partnered with BWIA for 15 years and 82 issues, publishing quarterly until August 1995, and then publishing bi-monthly from September 1995.

On 31 December 2006, BWIA was wound up and replaced by Caribbean Airlines. Caribbean Beat continued as the inflight magazine with the new airline. On 27 May 2011, Caribbean Airlines acquired a majority stake in Air Jamaica, making it the national airline both of Trinidad & Tobago and of Jamaica. Caribbean Beat is now the inflight magazine of Caribbean Airlines’ full network, and continues to publish every two months as before.

A wealth of Caribbean people & history

We get requests all the time from people looking for archive material from Caribbean Beat, which sometimes is the only trusted source for a range of West Indian and Caribbean subjects and material – personalities, culture, music, sports, history, business, arts, and more.

Digitising the archive

We recognise how important these archives are, particularly as Caribbean pioneers and personalities pass on, often before their life and work has been properly documented. As a result, over the past few years, we’ve been painstakingly digitising and uploading back issues – scanning photos and text, proofing, treating photos, laying out, and finally bringing it all online.

What you’ll find online

The archive currently extends back from our current edition to most issues through #60 (March/April 2003) and between #1 (March 1992) and #40 (1992–1997). In between print issues, we are slowly working to add text, photos and more from the archives. Many of the early editions are not available in digital format, so it takes some time to prepare them for the website. You can subscribe to our newsletter or the MEP blog to keep abreast of progress with the archives.

Ordering a back issue

If you require material from a back issue urgently and it is not online or in its complete form, you can order a copy online. Please make sure to indicate which issue you would like in your order.

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  • Martiniquan filmmaker Euzhan Palcy, twenty-five years after she appeared on the cover of the first Caribbean Beat. Photo ©Yannick Coupannec/Leemage
  • A young fancy sailor at rest during Carnival in Port of Spain, Trinidad. Photo by Abigail Hadeed
  • Jamaican reggae artist Chronnix. Photo by Nickii Kane
  • Two classics of Old Havana: a vintage car  parked beside a baroque colonial-era building. Photo by Delpixart/
  • Bequia‘s colourful coconut boats. Mauritius Images GmbH / Alamy Stock Photo
  • Trinidadian jazz musician and composer Etienne Charles. Photo by Maria Nunes
  • Tobago-born musical legend Calypso Rose. Richard Holder, courtesy Stonetree Records/Maturity
  • The greatest Caribbean athlete of all time? Jamaican Usain Bolt is definitely a contender, as he defends his Olympic titles at the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro. Photo by Alexander Hassenstein/Getty Images
  • For wildlife watchers in Guyana, a glimpse of an elusive jaguar is a majestic prize. Photo by Pete Oxford
  • Bunji Garlin, Trinidadian soca superstar. Photo by Jonathan Mannion Photography
  • At Guyana’s Kaieteur Falls the Potaro River plunges 741 feet into a sandstone gorge. Photo © Pete Oxford /
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  • The view from a beach near Soufrière includes Petit Piton, one of the twin volcanic peaks that are icons of St Lucia. Photo Danielle Devaux
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  • Issue 124
  • Up-and-coming Grenadian track star and potential Olympic medallist, Kirani James. Photo Getty Images/Michael Steele
  • Courtesy Heather Headley
  • Photo portrait by Marlon James, background by Markus Gann/Shutterstock, digital imaging by MEP
  • Marlon Rouse