Caracas and Mexico City — Venezuela’s national airline Conviasa’s routes to the new Felipe Ángeles International Airport (AIFA), located in the Santa Lucía region, will only be three in total, for now.
Conviasa has scheduled flights between March and April to fly to and from the Mexican terminal and does not allow seeing more in the coming months.
The new airport is one of the emblematic works of the government of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, which is trying to solve traffic congestion at Mexico City International Airport (AICM).
“It’s not a regular flight with a fixed route, it would be a charter flight,” said Fernando Gómez Suárez, a specialist in the aviation sector. Bloomberg line. “Hopefully, commercial airlines from the United States and any other country will join, because there is a need to create this deconcentration of operations (of the IMCA).”
The arrival of a flight from Caracas, announced for the opening day, next March 21, will have a symbolic character, for the moment, reaffirming the intentions that the terminal has an international vocation.
See more: AIFA will organize an inaugural international flight to Caracas thanks to the airline Conviasa
On the Venezuelan airline’s website, a few additional routes are planned: Wednesday April 13 and Tuesday April 26 for the outward flight, with returns on April 13 and 27.
Users in Venezuela attempted to access the flight on April 13, but the Conviasa portal reported that it did not exist. Travel agencies in Venezuela were able to progress through the system during the April 26 flight.
The few frequencies could be related to capacity limitations and restrictions facing the Venezuelan airline.as it suffers from the same situation with other destinations due to its financial problems.
See more: Conviasa, sanctioned by the United States, paves the way for new routes with dollarized prices
Other reasons expressed by experts in Venezuela could be related to the assignment of slits at the new airport, said aviation lawyer Rodolfo Ruiz Bloomberg line. This would also be linked to the low availability of equipment, despite the current presence of an Airbus 340-300 for international flights.
Conviasa received an Airbus 340-600 aircraft on March 15 Long range.
The few Conviasa flights to Santa Lucia contrasts with the systematization of routes between Caracas and the Mexican tourist destination of Cancunto Quintana Roo, where a few weekly flights are scheduled.
Venezuelan travel agencies have been able to record how other operators have suspended this same itinerary due to low demand.
AIFA still does not have airport and aeronautical certificates from the International Civil Organization (ICAO) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA), to which foreign airlines from signatory countries of the Chicago Agreement on international air transport are required to comply. .
“There are countries that are not signatories to the Chicago accord, Venezuela is one of them, they do not have the obligation to fly in certified airports”, said Fernando Gómez Suárez.
Mexican airlines may also operate international flights from AIFA, but they have not announced routes outside of Mexico.
For now, the international character of AIFA is linked to an agreement published in the Official Gazette of the Federation (DOF) of Mexico on February 22 and which obliges the Secretariat for Infrastructure, Communications and Transport to notify this declaration to the ICAO.
Currently, Mexican airlines have been unable to open new routes to the United States since Mexico had its aviation safety rating downgraded by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the highest aviation authority. the United States.
The rating was upgraded from Category 1 to Category 2, after an audit revealed non-compliance with minimum safety standards established by ICAO. The government of Mexico has struggled to reclaim Category 1, ever since the rating was adjusted nearly a year ago.
The objective is to recover it during the first half of 2022.
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