Ladies and gentlemen:
Continuing from another thread...
This morning, an Argentine-registered Boeing 747 not pertaining to flag carrier Aerolíneas Argentinas landed at Madrid-Barajas airport. After many months of suspense and a couple of deals which never bore fruit, struggling carrier Southern Winds have finally put in an impressive 4-engined appearance at the Spanish capital, and on schedule too.
The aircraft, LV-AZF, which first flew almost 22 years ago for Cathay Pacific, should herald a new chapter for Southern Winds, who can finally put the strenuous days of depending on a single aircraft (a Boeing 767) for the EZE-MAD sector behind them. If all goes well, a second 747-200 should be arriving shortly, as part of an ambitious expansion programme funded by Argentine tycoon Martín Varsávsky, which promises to see a total of seven Jumbos sporting the "SW" logo on their tails.
It is with cautious optimism that we can say that Aerolíneas finally have an Argentine competitor on their most profitable international destination, and having flown with both, I can assure you that the decision is always a tough one, especially with Southern Winds offering promotional return fares of €590/US$747 for both EZE-MAD and EZE-MAD-BCN. Nonetheless, it is not certain as to which cities Southern Winds intend to add besides the obvious candidates (MIA and JFK once CAT II restrictions are lifted).
A very Happy New Year to Southern Winds, and may they continue to deliver on their promises.
Saludos a todos!