As tourism in Mexico continues to soar,driving air traffic to new heights,a number of the world’s biggest airlines have responded by increasing the availability of flights to the nation’s most popular vacation destinations.
For example,Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico,which operates 12 airports throughout Mexico’s Pacific region,has reported increases throughout 2015,announcing in early October that its total number of passengers grew by 22.5 percent in September compared to the same period last year.
“Increased frequency of flights to destinations such as Mexico City and Tijuana has affected the domestic market,” writes Financial News. “The international operation has also grown as a result of new routes,such as Dallas,Houston,Los Angeles,Guatemala,New York and Costa Rica.”
Specifically,Volaris began offering flights to Chetumal from Mexico City in mid-October to coincide with the opening of the new Mahahual water park,which opened to the public for the first time Oct. 24 for a sneak preview of the facility’s rides and activities. The new flights will promote and encourage tourism to destinations throughout the southern portions of Quintana Roo.
“Volaris started operations with three weekly flights,on Tuesdays,Thursdays and Sundays,offering connectivity to more than 19 routes within and outside the country,” writes Costa Maya Life. “These flights will also benefit other tourist destinations like Bacalar,Caldarita and the Free Zone.”
Airport operator Grupo Aeroportuario del Sureste (ASUR) also rallied to a record this year,as traffic growth prompted by an expansion in the Cancun International Airport,Bloomberg reported. The Mexico City based-company announced passenger traffic had increased by nearly 16 percent this June,compared to the same period last year,thanks to the Cancun airport expansion and more travelers flying.
Speaking of Cancun,Southwest Airlines officially began to offer service from Houston this fall,with service operating twice daily between Houston’s William P. Hobby Airport and Cancun International. According to the Caribbean Journal,the flights are part of a larger expansion in service from the new Texas hub to other destinations in Mexico,including Cabo San Lucas and Mexico City.
Air France also offers service to Cancun in the form of four weekly direct flights,available Wednesdays,Fridays,Saturdays and Sundays.
“This year,further growth is expected in French tourism,with France and Mexico exchanging delegations last year,as well as promoting one another’s cultural,culinary and tourism markets,” writes Riviera Maya News. “While in France last year,local Mexican delegates promoted many aspects of Cancun and the Riviera Maya,including the underwater museum and whale shark swimming experience.”
Aeromexico began offering direct flights from Mexico City to Cozumel Island Oct. 1,in addition to the current Interjet flights that have been offered four times each week and the Miami-Cozumel flights offered by American Airlines.
“Cozumel is a place with rich natural,cultural and historical richness,with welcoming people who invite domestic and foreign tourists,” Cozumel Mayor Marrufo Martin told the Riviera Maya News.
American Airlines also offers new nonstop service between Dallas/Fort Worth and Merida,which is located on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula,about three hours west of Cancun.
“The addition of Merida gives our customers 21 destinations in Mexico,and we’ll now operate nearly 120 daily flights between our two countries,” Art Torno,senior vice president for American Airlines international and cargo divisions,told USA Today. “American was the first international airline to fly to Mexico in 1942 and we’ve been one of the leading international carriers in the country ever since.”
Southwest Airlines is also increasing its service to Mexico,adding flights to six destinations from Houston,including Cancun,Cabo San Lucas,Puerto Vallarta and Mexico City,while Minnesota-based Sun Country Airlines added new nonstop service to Cancun from Southwest Florida International in early October,and Alaska Airlines now flies nonstop from Orange County,California,to Puerto Vallarta,Mexico.
Finally,WestJet announced weekly service between Toronto and the Mexican cities of Huatulco,Merida and Cabo San Lucas,while Southwest offers highly affordable rates from California’s John Way Airport to Puerto Vallarta.