Latin America and the Caribbean: leaders in air traffic recovery

Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela are positioned with the best results in the area of travel and tourism in the domestic market.

Latin America and The Caribbean (LAC) once again leads the world ranking for air passenger traffic recovery by transporting, during the month of June, 29.2 million passengers, a figure 1.8% higher than its pre-pandemic levels. This growth compared to 2019 was driven by the domestic market, while the international market remained 2% below its 2019 levels, as highlighted by the Air Traffic Report presented each month by the Latin American and Caribbean Air Transport Association (ALTA).

Argentina was the most prominent country in the recovery of domestic air traffic with a 16% growth compared to June 2019. This milestone is related to the increase in traffic to and from Bariloche, a city that during June had six direct domestic routes and 982 flights operated.

Specifically, on the Aeroparque-Bariloche route, flights increased 43%, while the Ezeiza-Bariloche route increased 89%. Bariloche’s high air connectivity reaffirms its position as one of the most important tourist destinations in Argentina where, according to local government data, tourism generates just over 40% of total employment.

Argentina thus surpassed the growth of Mexico (+15%) and Colombia (+4%). Similarly, the domestic performance of Venezuela and Chile was very positive, advancing 11% and 8%, respectively, above 2019.

Brazil accumulated two consecutive months of growth, reaching 4% in June above 2019. The Congonhas (SP)-Santos Dumont (RJ) route was the most important domestic route in the region with 3,158 flights operated between both airports in June, representing an increase of 24% over 2019.

Thus, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela are the seven countries with the best domestic recovery in the region during June; together they represent 94% of the total domestic traffic in Latin America and The Caribbean.

Colombia leads in international passenger traffic

Colombia leads the recovery of international air traffic. It stood out with 40% growth (483,000 additional international passengers) versus its 2019 levels, which were driven by growth in the number of flights on the Cali-Miami (+50%), Bogota-Quito (+49%), Bogota-Santo Domingo (+8%) and Bogota-Madrid (+48%) routes. In total, to and from Colombia, 10,800 international flights were operated during June 2023, 13% more than in June 2019.

Mexico, on the other hand, had a 12% growth in international passengers, mainly driven by the increase in the number of frequencies in the markets to and from Colombia (+15%), Spain (+36%) and Costa Rica (+36%). The most important international route in Mexico, Cancun-Dallas Fort Worth, grew 49% in the number of flights offered.

Dominican Republic grew 17%, driven by three international markets that doubled their number of flights compared to 2019: Colombia (+49%), Venezuela (80%) and Mexico (+39%). Among the largest international markets still lagging behind June 2019 Brazil, Argentina and Chile with 83%, 77% and 84% of 2019 levels, respectively.

Mexico is the leader in 2023 vs 2019

In the second quarter of 2023, 87.2 million passengers were carried in the region, 1% more than in the same quarter of 2019. Mexico maintained its leadership as the highest traffic country in the region during 2Q23 with a total of 29.1 million passengers carried and domestic and international levels well above 2019.

For its part, the air market in Colombia carried a total of 11.4 million passengers in 2Q23, exceeding 2019 passengers by 13%. As mentioned above, international growth in Colombia stood out with 34% more than its levels in the same quarter of 2019. Countries such as Dominican Republic (+16%) and Costa Rica (+11%) stood out in international traffic growth.

Brazil remained 3% below its pre-pandemic levels with 26.2 million passengers carried in the second quarter of 2023. Brazil faces different realities in its domestic and international market, while domestic traffic has exceeded its Q2 2019 levels by 0.5%, in the international case it remains 16% below 2019 levels.


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Dominican Republic Live Editor

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