- Avianca announced a $473 million investment to add 16 new Airbus A320neo-family-based aircraft, increasing their overall capacity by 24%.
- The new planes will provide greater connectivity in Colombia, Ecuador, and Central America, allowing for 5,200 additional flights and 937,000 extra seats per month.
- Avianca aims to gain market share in Colombia by deploying 14 of the new aircraft exclusively in the country, offering 4,249 additional flights and 767,490 new seats.
Investing in providing greater connectivity
With the objective of providing greater connectivity in Colombia, Ecuador, and Central America, Avianca announced on Thursday the arrival of 16 additional planes to its fleet. These new aircraft will mean 5,200 additional flights and 937,000 seats per month, increasing the airline’s overall capacity by 24%.
Photo: Fabricio Burbano/Shutterstock.
Avianca will continue with the Airbus A320neo family as it receives these 16 new planes, the airline said during a press conference in Bogota. Of these new aircraft, 14 will be exclusively deployed in Colombia, as Avianca aims to gain the market share left after the bankruptcies of Viva Air and Ultra Air earlier this year.
The new aircraft will gradually begin operations between October and December. Avianca’s 14 new planes in the Colombian market will allow the company to offer 4,249 additional flights and 767,490 new seats in this country.
Increasing the airline’s route map
Avianca stated that the capacity increase will strengthen and restore connectivity to cities and regions that lost it due to the crisis, as well as provide more and better connectivity opportunities to other destinations within and outside Colombia.
Photo: Markus Mainka/Shutterstock.
In particular, cities highly impacted in terms of air connectivity, such as San Andrés, Villavicencio, Riohacha, and Leticia, will now have more flights. Avianca said it will increase from 30 to 53 weekly flights from Bogota, Medellín, and Cali to San Andrés, a small leisure island in the Caribbean that was greatly served by Ultra Air and Viva Air a few months ago.
The company will go from operating one daily flight to two flights per day between Bogota and Villavicencio, totaling 14 weekly flights. In Riohacha, Avianca will increase from 20 to 28 weekly flights connecting from Bogota. Leticia will have an increase from ten to 18 operations per week. Ipiales will have an increase from four weekly flights to daily operations, and Pasto will have an addition from 25 weekly flights to 42.
In total, there will be approximately 20 destinations within Colombian and another 10 international destinations that will be benefited from more Avianca flights, particularly during the coming holiday season. Avianca released this map showing the cities that will have capacity increases following the reception of the new planes.
The reliance on air connectivity
Adrian Neuhauser, Chief Executive Officer of Avianca, said on Thursday that Colombia is a country that heavily relies on air connectivity due to its geography. He added,
“Our Colombian identity has been and will always be a part of the solution: first, we ensured that users could fulfill their travel plans after the crisis to stabilize the sector, and now, we double down on our commitment and add more people to our operation, more capacity with more planes, more seats, and more connectivity to recover and strengthen Colombia. Here we are, and here we continue.”
Earlier this year, Colombia suffered from a connectivity crisis. The South American country lost two ultra-low-cost carriers to bankruptcy within weeks. Viva Air and Ultra Air ceased operations, leaving thousands of passengers stranded nationwide. The airline’s bankruptcies, plus other factors, led to a yearly decrease in the number of domestic passengers in Colombia.
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