Mexico airport operator Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste (ASUR) has released the details of its new Master Development Plan, which includes investments of more than $778 million in its Cancun and Cozumel hubs. ASUR currently operates nine airports in southeastern Mexico, and may soon be opening a new facility in the growing Riviera Maya town of Tulum, which lies just over an hour south of Cancun.
The Cancun International Airport, which saw one of the largest increases in passenger traffic in 2013 and is among the top 10 international airports visited by U.S. travelers, will receive upwards of $750 million for terminal expansion. This will provide an even larger array of options for travelers flying into and out of what has become “Mexico’s fastest growing airport” in recent decades, according to the Centre for Aviation.
Nearby, the international airport on Cozumel Island will receive $28 million to improve the terminal, which has seen a significant increase in passenger traffic over the last few years. Cozumel lies just south of Cancun in the Mexican Caribbean Sea, just offshore from Playa del Carmen deep in the heart of the Riviera Maya. Last year, ASUR spent more than $240,000 to remodel the facility’s passenger departure and arrival areas, construct a new façade and extend a covered walkway to protect passengers.
2013 brought impressive growth in the number of bookings among ASUR’s airports in Mexico, with domestic traffic up 8.5 percent to 9.4 million and international traffic up 10.3 percent to 11.7 million. This is a trend that can be seen throughout the country, prompting the addition of hundreds of new flights to Mexico in 2014.
“Grupo Aeromexico SAB and low-cost carriers Volaris and Interjet are pushing aircraft orders to a record, and Mexico airline passengers rose 8 percent during the first 10 months of 2013 after 2012’s all-time high of 56.8 million,” writes Bloomberg.
Finally, the Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch reported recently that, according to the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC),tourism made up at least 12.5 percent of Mexico’s GDP and 13.9 percent of its total employment in recent years. In addition, Aeromexico, Interjet and Volaris have all ordered new jets to increase their fleet sizes by more than 80 planes by the end of 2019 to accommodate the rising demand. The increase in air traffic to Mexico has a sort of domino effect, prompting an increased demand for hotels and improvements to basic infrastructure, which drives the nation’s expanding economy.