Air travel in Brazil has been in the news for all the wrong reasons during the last 12 months with the collapse of the former national flag carrier Varig, air traffic control concerns and two fatal accidents. Despite these problems, air travel has continued to thrive.
Domestic traffic, which represents nearly 90% of all Brazilian airport traffic, grew by 7.8% in 2006 and would probably have achieved double-digit growth if it had not been for the collapse of Varig in July 2006. This resulted in second half growth of only around 3% compared with 14% growth in the first half of 2006.
Domestic growth in the first five months of 2007 has averaged around 11% – not quite comparable with the likes of India and Mexico, but well above the global average for domestic air travel.
Analysis of the Top 15 airports for domestic air traffic in 2006 shows that the two major airports serving Sao Paulo account for one-third of the 102.2 million domestic passenger movements through Brazilian airports.