The airline Latam Airlines Colombia announced that it will restart its national operation with 8 routes from Bogotá, with the aim of rearming its destination network with the country’s capital as the only distribution hub. The destinations planned in this first stage are Medellín, Cali, Barranquilla, Cartagena, Santa Marta, Bucaramanga, San Andrés and Leticia.
The start of operations will be carried out gradually so that at the end of the month there will be four daily flights on the routes to Medellín and Cali, two daily flights to Cartagena, one daily flight to Barranquilla, Bucaramanga and Santa Marta, and three flights weekly to San Andrés and Leticia, which will be the last to start their operation.
According to the company, in this way it aims to make 620 flights during September, completing an offer of 89,200 total seats, which corresponds to 12 percent of the capacity prior to the pandemic.
By September Latam Colombia plans to activate 5 Airbus A319 aircraft with capacity for 144 passengers.
Additionally, the national cargo operation will continue, as it has during the months of suspension of passenger air transport, with 2 flights a week in Airbus A320 aircraft from Bogotá and Medellín to San Andrés, and operations with international cargo distribution to Miami. Lima and Santiago de Chile in Boeing B767-F cargo planes.
The company’s strategy will focus on three fronts: first, low prices that help stimulate Colombians to travel.
In this way, it will offer rates from $ 74,900 pesos per trip leveraged by the reduction of VAT for air tickets from 19 to 5 percent, defined by the Government until December 2021.
Second, there is the flexibility for travel rescheduling, taking into account that the persistence of the pandemic will continue to generate uncertainty for some passengers.
“In this way, for those who buy from August 1 and their travel date is until November 30 of this year, they will be able to make changes at no cost, since they will not pay a penalty or rate differences. On the other hand, for passengers whose travel date is from December 1, 2020 onwards, they will be able to make their changes without charging penalties and paying the fare difference in the cases that apply, ”the company indicated.
And, thirdly, the health care of its passengers, crews and ground personnel will be the pillar of its operation. For this, Latam Colombia implemented the biosafety protocols of the Ministry of Health, contemplated in Resolutions 666 and 1054 of 2020, and obtained the quality certifications “Check-in certified, Covid-19 bioseguro” from the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Tourism and “Biosecurity Management”.
“The restart will be challenging considering the demand projections that we see for the first months of reactivation. Likewise, in In the medium and long term, we see that this will be a slow and complex process, taking into account, on the one hand, the recovery projections for the industry, which according to IATA have a 4-year horizon to return to 2019 levels, and on the other, the evolution of the limitations of the operational capacity defined by the national government – in coordination with the local mayors – necessary for the management of the pandemic ”, assured Santiago Álvarez, executive director of LATAM Airlines Colombia.
ECONOMY AND BUSINESS – WEATHER