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BWI charter flights to Cuba to begin March 21

Charter flights from Baltimore Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport to Cuba will begin on March 21.

The weekly service begins the week before Pope Benedict XVI is scheduled to visit the communist island nation.

BWI announced Tuesday that the flights are scheduled to depart at 3 p.m. Airport officials say tickets for the service are available through Island Travel & Tours.

BWI announced last year that it was among several new markets that had received approval to provide service to Cuba by U.S. Customs and Border Protection. President Barack Obama announced last January that the administration planned to expand charter service to Cuba, which had been limited to three airports in Miami, Los Angeles and New York City.