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Aires Launches Flights To Maracaibo From Colombia  
User currently offlineSOUTHAMERICA From Colombia, joined Dec 2003, 2497 posts, RR: 10
Posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 3460 times:

Greetings,


Finally, one airline believes again in the feasibility of investing on the astonishingly underserved market between secondary cities of Colombia and Venezuela...





...Effective today, July 7th, Aires, one of the leading regional airlines in Colombia, is going to serve Maracaibo, Venezuela, with 1 daily flight to Colombian territory.

The 7 weekly frequencies will be distributed as follows:

  • On MoWeFr, Aires will operate the Cucuta-MAR-Cucuta route, originating in Bucaramanga.


  • On TuSa, the company will serve Maracaibo nonstop from Barranquilla


  • On ThSu, the airline will fly the Cartagena-Maracaibo-Cartagena route.


  • Aires, a company founded in 1981, is currently the leading regional airline in Colombia. The airline efficiently operates 9 Dash-8 aircraft all over the country, serving more than 20 national destinations, and 3 international stations. The company manages a dual-operation based on Bogota and Medellin, and owns a smaller focused system in the Caribbean coast out of Barranquilla.

    ____________________________________

    Personally, I must admit that this came as a pleasant surprise for me. I would have thought that AV would give MAR a shot debuting with flights to/from BOG, especially now that they have added a bit of capacity in the MD-83 fleet, and that their BOG-CCS route is consistently performing great.

    The best wishes to Aires in Maracaibo. Their Caracas route from Barranquilla lasted less than your first pay-check, but I believe that MAR offers better demographic and market conditions to succeed.

    Feel free to comment about it.




    SOUTHAMERICA

    12 replies: All unread, jump to last
     
    User currently offlineSOUTHAMERICA From Colombia, joined Dec 2003, 2497 posts, RR: 10
    Reply 1, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 3443 times:

    I knew that I'd left something out...

    ...for the ones who need to double check the info, here's the link directly from the company's webpage:

    http://www.aires.com.co/modulos/port...l/novedades/noticias/articulos/66/



    SOUTHAMERICA


    User currently offlineChiguire From Venezuela, joined Sep 2004, 2005 posts, RR: 16
    Reply 2, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 3428 times:

    Great news for MAR. It was really time.

    Quoting SOUTHAMERICA (Thread starter):
    I would have thought that AV would give MAR a shot debuting with flights to/from BOG,

    Well, let's hope this happens...Aires is not covering BOG-MAR.

    But there would also be some space for CCS-CTG, CCS-MDE nonstop services. If AV tries to operate via their BOG hub, maybe someone else can open those needed routes.


    User currently offline757MDE From Colombia, joined Sep 2004, 1753 posts, RR: 6
    Reply 3, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 3424 times:

    Service has almost been started to MDE from CCS, once by AeroPostal (they even had counters) and another time by Rutaca, but they left in the same shady way they came... let's hope it can materialize soon!


    I gladly accept donations to pay for flight hours! This thing draws man...
    User currently offlineSOUTHAMERICA From Colombia, joined Dec 2003, 2497 posts, RR: 10
    Reply 4, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 3410 times:

    Quoting Chiguire (Reply 2):
    But there would also be some space for CCS-CTG, CCS-MDE nonstop services.

    Right. SAM operated the MDE-CTG-CCS route during the mid to late-90s until they decided to get rid of their RJ-100 fleet. The route had quite a popularity, but not as much as Avensa's flights to Medellin from Caracas via San Antonio moving passengers and especially cargo.


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    SOUTHAMERICA


    User currently offlineLuisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2574 posts, RR: 31
    Reply 5, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 3411 times:

    This is amazing news! I'm very very happy to read this. Finally an airline listens to what we've been asking for in this forums for a long time. This a step forward in our integration process, it is very welcome. I wish aires the best in this new destination.

    What I don't understand is the CUC-MAR-CUC flight. I mean, you can easily fly nonstop MAR-San Antonio-MAR and then take a cab across the border. And I also doubt that it's cheaper to fly to CUC and San Antonio, especially considering the international taxes you have to pay if you fly MAR-CUC-MAR. This is direct competition with Santa Barbara daily ATR42 flight MAR-San Antonio-MAR. I think they should take the CUC frecuencies to MDE.

    Quoting SOUTHAMERICA (Thread starter):
    I would have thought that AV would give MAR a shot debuting with flights to/from BOG, especially now that they have added a bit of capacity in the MD-83 fleet, and that their BOG-CCS route is consistently performing great

    Maybe they don't want to dilute their traffic to Venezuela.

    Quoting Chiguire (Reply 2):

    But there would also be some space for CCS-CTG, CCS-MDE nonstop services.

    If we were to bet on which would be the next Venezuela-Colombia flight, I would say: CCS-MDE-CCS. 4X weekly with MD80 would do fine to begin with.

    I don't know the demographics, but are there many Colombians living in Venezuela that are originally from the Cali area? maybe there's a market for a CCS-CLO-CCS flight.

    Saludos desde Caracas,
    Luis

    [Edited 2005-07-07 15:48:11]

    User currently offlineSOUTHAMERICA From Colombia, joined Dec 2003, 2497 posts, RR: 10
    Reply 6, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 3391 times:

    Quoting Luisde8cd (Reply 5):
    I don't know the demographics, but are there many Colombians living in Venezuela that are originally from the Cali area? maybe there's a market for a CCS-CLO-CCS flight.

    Perhaps there are, but CLO doesn't have a history of flights to Venezuela, whereas MDE has had, during the 90s decade, flights to Maracaibo, long-lasting services to Caracas via San Antonio del Tachira and Cartagena.

    ...Hell, Cali doesn't even have air-services to Cucuta, the most important bordering city in the whole country.



    SOUTHAMERICA


    User currently offlinePzurita1 From Greenland, joined Sep 2002, 1393 posts, RR: 14
    Reply 7, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 3369 times:

    this is great news!
    However, I am a little bit surprised since currently there are not BOG-MAR, nor CCS-MDE, CCS-CTG, CCS-BQA.

    So let me get this straight (if I understood this correctly), no Venezuelan or Colombian airline has found a market linking capital cities with main cities in the other country (both O&D routes and connecting pax). However, Aires is willing to risk linking CUC, BQA and CTG with MAR, pure O&D routes.

    Is there any logic here?

    It seems weird to go for the small uncertain market (ie BQA-MAR, CTG-MAR) rather than trying to develop a similar uncertain market, but at least larger (ie, BOG-MAR, CCS-MDE)

    Anyway... those are my thoughts.

    My sympathies to Londoners.



    Next flight: IAH-DBX-MRU-ANT
    User currently offlineLuisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2574 posts, RR: 31
    Reply 8, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 3370 times:

    Quoting SOUTHAMERICA (Reply 6):
    Perhaps there are, but CLO doesn't have a history of flights to Venezuela, whereas MDE has had, during the 90s decade, flights to Maracaibo, long-lasting services to Caracas via San Antonio del Tachira and Cartagena

    Exactly, that's why I put my money on CCS-MDE-CCS. Especially after watching on TV a Medellin City Council member (Concejal) last January during the Granda crisis, saying that around 80% of Medellin exports are destined to Venezuela. There are important economic ties between Medellin and Venezuela and if you add the VFR pax, then I think you got a success formula. Hopefully an airline will soon exploit it.


    User currently offlineRICARIZA From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 2393 posts, RR: 26
    Reply 9, posted (9 years 3 months 3 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 3333 times:

    Quoting SOUTHAMERICA (Thread starter):

    Based on March market share, Satena will be bigger than Aires.



    I have used Aires many times and I truly recommend it. Their dash-8 planes are in excellent condition and the service is really good. I hope this new route will work for them.



    I miss ACES, I am proud of AVIANCA & I am loyal to AMERICAN
    User currently offlineSOUTHAMERICA From Colombia, joined Dec 2003, 2497 posts, RR: 10
    Reply 10, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 22 hours ago) and read 3318 times:

    Quoting Pzurita1 (Reply 7):
    So let me get this straight (if I understood this correctly), no Venezuelan or Colombian airline has found a market linking capital cities with main cities in the other country (both O&D routes and connecting pax).

    They have, but for several reasons, never directly related with flight perfomance itself, those flights have gone with the wind.

    As I mentioned earlier, Avensa/Servivensa, during the whole 90s decade, found an interesting niche by linking Bogota with cities like Valencia and San Antonio del Tachira, and by offering services from Caracas to Medellin.

    SAM did something similar, with their former MDE-CTG-CCS until the day they got rid of the Avro RJ-100s. Then came the Fokker-50s, and SAM started to take a more leisure-oriented shape, and serving the MDE-CTG-CCS with Fokker-50s was now against all practicall purposes.

    As mentioned by 757MDE, Aeropostal had eveything to start operating in MDE from CCS, gate spaces, counters, offices, operative rights, and everyone in the airport took by granted the arrival of VH. But that arrival never took place. The initial talks said that the airline had no aircraft availability to make the route a reality, and the moment everyone looked, the counters and everything belonging to VH was gone.

    Quoting Pzurita1 (Reply 7):
    However, Aires is willing to risk linking CUC, BQA and CTG with MAR, pure O&D routes.

    At first glance, it does looks a bit wild. But then again, MAR has been, for many years, depressingly uncommunicated with Colombian soil. The options are limited to road trips to Barranquilla which take many hours under questionable road security standars, or to take a ridiculous flight to Caracas in order to backtrack to Bogota, which, can be, among other things, quite expensive.

    Cucuta, as abovementioned, takes the title, by far, of the largest, most populated and most commercially active border city of Colombia. Aires has a much smaller customer base in Cucuta than that of Avianca, but commerce, demographics and evident ties with Venezuela seem to make this route feasible. Add to that the fact that the thrice weekly route will originate in Bucaramanga, and bring in passengers from Medellin.

    Barranquilla and Cartagena, with two weekly flights, higher population bases, demographical ties with bordering Venezuelan state Zulia [of which Maracaibo is the main city] the two largest cities of the Colombian northern coast, relatively old Aires stations and offering possibilities to connect onward to Valledupar and Monteria, should represent even less of a hasle.

    In all, I think Aires will wisely take advantage of this forgotten market, with frequencies aimed evidently towards leisure travellers, and operated regional turboprops with which they have succesfully operated flights to Aruba and Panama from BAQ and CTG.

    Quoting Luisde8cd (Reply 8):
    Especially after watching on TV a Medellin City Council member (Concejal) last January during the Granda crisis, saying that around 80% of Medellin exports are destined to Venezuela.

    Interesting information Luis, but a bit strange. MDE-MIA is consistently, and by a big distance, the most active cargo route from Medellin, and the second most active international route in Colombia. Maybe the majority of the exports are transported by road.

    Quoting RICARIZA (Reply 9):
    Based on March market share, Satena will be bigger than Aires.

    Based on May marketshare, Aires has an edge over Satena:

    Aires: 8,63% of the total market
    Satena: 8,56% of the total market

    Nevertheless, in the first quarter, Satena did have a bit more participation than Aires. Being privately owned, and profitable, unlike Satena, I still consider them in the lead.



    SOUTHAMERICA


    User currently offlineLuisde8cd From Pitcairn Islands, joined Aug 2004, 2574 posts, RR: 31
    Reply 11, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 19 hours ago) and read 3285 times:

    Quoting SOUTHAMERICA (Reply 10):
    Interesting information Luis, but a bit strange. MDE-MIA is consistently, and by a big distance, the most active cargo route from Medellin, and the second most active international route in Colombia. Maybe the majority of the exports are transported by road.

    Yes the majority of the exports are transported by road, it is way way cheaper than air. Transportation inside Venezuela is calculated with gas costing Bs. 96 per litre!, that's extremely cheap. And then you have to consider the good highway network inside Venezuela which facilitates ground transportation. By the way how much is a litre of unleaded gas in Colombia?

    Quoting SOUTHAMERICA (Reply 10):
    As mentioned by 757MDE, Aeropostal had eveything to start operating in MDE from CCS, gate spaces, counters, offices, operative rights, and everyone in the airport took by granted the arrival of VH. But that arrival never took place. The initial talks said that the airline had no aircraft availability to make the route a reality, and the moment everyone looked, the counters and everything belonging to VH was gone

    Maybe they decided at the last minute that it would be better to codeshare with Aerorepublica in the BOG-MDE-BOG flights. Right now sabre shows Aeropostal flight 1939 leaving BOG at 1630 and arriving MDE at 1720. MD80 equipment. I believe they codeshare with Aerorepublica in other flights from BOG to different Colombian cities.


    User currently offlineSOUTHAMERICA From Colombia, joined Dec 2003, 2497 posts, RR: 10
    Reply 12, posted (9 years 3 months 2 weeks 6 days 18 hours ago) and read 3280 times:

    Quoting Luisde8cd (Reply 11):
    And then you have to consider the good highway network inside Venezuela which facilitates ground transportation. By the way how much is a litre of unleaded gas in Colombia?

    Making a rough calculation, it would be around 1300 Colombian Pesos aproximately per litre [USD 0.57 per litre]. Draw your own conclusions.

    Anyway, just a week ago I drove from Bucaramanga to Medellin and it's a tiring 7 hour trip. It's the obligatory way for those wanting to go to Venezuela. There are a couple of parts, especially the Bucaramanga-Barrancabermeja portion, on which the road is in very mediocre conditions. Then you have to add another several hours from Bucaramanga to Cucuta; it is said that the road is even worse. The trip from Cucuta to San Cristobal isn't very relaxing either. From there on, I don't know the road, but I imagine it gets much easier for fast transportation.


    SOUTHAMERICA


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