Last updateFri, 20 May 2022 10am


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Federal government to force airlines into using AIFA

Mexico’s federal government is looking to pressure domestic airlines into using the new Felipe Angeles airport (AIFA) in the capital by reducing the number of “operations” (i.e. landings and takeoffs) permitted per hour at the Mexico City International Airport (AICM).

The AIFA opened to great fanfare last month. But with only a handful of flights scheduled each day, the facility is deserted for most of the time.

The new regulation would reduce the maximum number of operations per hour at AICM from 61 to 49, the equivalent of around 200 landings and takeoffs each day.

Communications and Transport (SICT) Undersecretary Rogelio Jimenez Pons said the government hopes to reach a negotiated agreement with the country’s three largest domestic airlines (Aeromexico, Volaris and Viva Aerobus) regarding the new restriction, and will not impose its will on the carriers. 

The airlines have been reluctant to switch routes to the new airport, located 40 kilometers north of the capital’s center, partly due to accessibility deficiencies.  The train line linking the city center with the airport won’t be ready until next year, and buses to the new facility can take up to 90 minutes.  

In a separate move aimed at kick starting operations at AIFA, the federal government is reported to be preparing a decree that would oblige airlines to move all their cargo and charter operations out of AICM.  Reports suggest airlines would be given four months to modify their operations accordingly. 

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