Passengers up 10% in Mexico in first five months of 2016; domestic traffic growth strong; international growth driven by local airlines

Passengers up 10% in Mexico in first five months of 2016

On 29 May Aeromexico celebrated its latest long-haul route launch in Amsterdam. The Dutch hub for fellow SkyTeam member KLM, will be served thrice-weekly. So far in 2016 Mexican carriers have been growing faster on international routes to/from Mexico than their non-Mexican counterparts. However, Mexican carriers still carry only just over one quarter of all passengers on international services to/from Mexico.

Mexico’s air transport market continues to report impressive growth in 2016. Last year the number of passengers travelling on domestic flights grew by 12.9% to 37.1 million, while international traffic was up 12.0% to 36.1 million. As a result, the country’s airports handled over 110 million passenger movements, a new record. Things are still looking good in 2016. From January to May domestic traffic is up again, this time by 11.4%. International traffic growth has slowed slightly, but is still an impressive 8.6%. Both domestic and international traffic have grown year-on-year every month since August 2011.

Chart:Mexican domestic traffic development Year-on-year change in passengers: 1/2006 to 5/2016

Source: DGAC Mexico.

Volaris takes decisive lead over Interjet among Mexican LCCs

So far in 2016 Aeromexico and Aeromexico Connect combined have accounted for around 32% of the domestic market, with Volaris now seemingly having pulled away in the battle to be the leading LCC with Interjet. Volaris’s share of the domestic market in 2016 is just over 28% while Interjet has just over 22%. Along with another LCC, VivaAerobus, these four carrier groupings account for over 92% of the Mexican domestic market. The three LCCs continue to take over 60% of the domestic market.

Chart:Mexican domestic air travel market Airline passenger market shares: 1/2007 - 5/2016

Source: DGAC Mexico.

International traffic growth driven by Mexican carriers

Looking more closely at the 8.6% growth in international traffic in the first five months of 2016, reveals that Mexican carriers have been growing much faster than their foreign counterparts. Mexican airlines have grown their international traffic by 15.4% while non-Mexican carriers have seen passenger numbers rise by a more modest 6.4%. As a result, local carriers now have a 26% share of all international traffic, compared with just over 24% in the same period a year ago.

Chart:Mexican international traffic development Year-on-year change in passengers: 1/2008 to 5/2016

Source: DGAC Mexico.

Most of the new international services launched so far in 2016 have been to the US, though there have been a couple of notable exceptions. Aeromexico began a thrice-weekly non-stop service to Amsterdam on 29 May, while Alitalia began a thrice-weekly service from Rome Fiumicino to Mexico City.

Passengers up 10% in Mexico in first five months of 2016

Volaris has been at the forefront of Mexican carriers launching new routes to the US. A thrice-weekly service between Guadalajara and Seattle-Tacoma was celebrated at the US airport on 7 July with this gift exchange. As a result Volaris now operates almost 50 routes between Mexico and the US.


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