Brazilian airports see 16% growth in Q1; Alitalia, Emirates, Iberia, Lufthansa, TAP Portugal all starting new routes
Brazil’s airports had a good first quarter of 2011 with the number of domestic passengers processed climbing 16.4% to just over 38 million, while international passenger traffic was up 15.4% to just over 4.5 million. With Brazil set to host the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympics in 2016, several airlines have announced plans to launch new international services to Brazil in the coming months.
TAM briefly loses top domestic spot to GOL in February
TAM’s position as the leading airline in the domestic market was briefly challenged in February when its share of the domestic market (as measured in revenue passenger-kilometres, RPKs) fell just below that of its arch-rival GOL for the first time. However, in March, TAM was back in front with a lead of three percentage points, 41.8% versus 38.8%.
The market share of the remaining domestic carriers is gradually creeping towards the 20% mark with Azul and Webjet leading the way.
Singapore Airlines arrives in Sao Paulo
In the first quarter of 2011, Brazil has welcomed several new international services from foreign carriers. In early February, Iberia began three weekly flights from Madrid to Fortaleza and Recife, followed later that month by Uruguayan carrier Pluna starting four-times weekly flights from Montevideo to Belo Horizonte.
At the end of March, Singapore Airlines began its first flights to Brazil when it started serving Sao Paulo from Singapore, via Barcelona. The service operates three times per week using a 777-300ER.
Alitalia, Iberia, Lufthansa, TAP Portugal all coming soon; Emirates in 2012
Several airline have announced plans to start (or in some cases re-start) new international services to Brazil in the coming months.
- Condor: Frankfurt to Recife starting on 4 May (weekly using 767)
- Alitalia: Rome Fiumicino to Rio re-starting on 4 June (four flights per week using A330-200)
- TAP Portugal: Lisbon to Porto Alegre starting on 12 June (four flights per week using A33-200)
- COPA Airlines: Panama City to Porto Alegre starting on 15 June (four flights per week using 737-700)
- COPA Airlines: Panama City to Brasilia starting on 18 June (four flights per week using 737-700)
- Iberia: Barcelona to Sao Paulo starting on 19 June (two flights per week using A340-300)
- Lufthansa: Frankfurt to Rio re-starting on 30 October (five flights per week using A340-300)
- Emirates: Dubai to Rio starting on 3 January 2012 (daily using 777-300ER)
Emirates and Qatar Airways already serve Sao Paulo from the Middle East hubs but Emirates becomes the first of the ‘MEB3’ carriers to serve Rio de Janeiro.