Avianca extended its promotion in Central America

The airline participated in the important Central American Travel Market 2024 event, held in El Salvador last week.

In this context, Travel2latam spoke with Rolando Damas, Avianca Sales Manager for North and Central America and Europe.

What are the news for the area that concerns you? 

2023 was a historic year. We grew by 50% in the capacity we offer on flights in the North and Central America region. And in the first quarter of this year we already grew 32%. The growth has been incredible for the region. Today we have more than 140 flights, 40 weekly frequencies between North America and Central America. We also have 106 weekly frequencies between South America and Central America. That is, we have a fairly robust network.

Last year we transported 32 million passengers, of which 5 million were within the Central American region. We have a renewed fleet, quite new, and we have the Dreamliners, the 787s, for long flights. We are starting many new routes, we have already started 19, of which 10 were in Central America. We add direct flights San Salvador – Las Vegas, Guatemala – Chicago, and San Pedro Sula – JFK in New York. We have San Salvador – Madrid, which we started last year, and it is seasonal.

Today from Central America we have 44 routes, of which 37 are year-round, and 7 are seasonal in high season. This coming June, we start again in San Salvador – Madrid, which is a highly requested flight. In addition, after several years of being outside Peru, we will start again San Salvador – Lima, on June 17, and obviously we have several additional routes from different markets such as in Colombia, which will have Bogotá – Cusco, which is a quite tourist route.

This year we are very focused on continuing to grow, continuing to position the brand. We have “Travel to suit you”, in the sense that if the client decides to travel with a backpack he can pay as cheaply as possible. We are trying to accommodate the client’s needs so that they have affordable price options.

What strategy are you using to promote yourself?

It is important to highlight that we were the most punctual airline in the world in 2023. I think that when we fly we all want to leave on time and arrive on time, that is key for us. And the truth is that it was a success. This March we also came out in the top three for punctuality in the world again. We are focused on ensuring that the client leaves on time and arrives at their destination on time. And also that we have a schedule completion.

The schedule completion is to operate all the flights we have scheduled, we are at 99%, that is also incredible. We almost never cancel flights. We are focused on the issue of rates so that the client has the option of paying the most economical price if he wants to travel with few things. If you want to travel with more things, you can choose another fare, or even buy a more comfortable seat in the first three rows. We have a menu of options.

The passenger can feel the difference between traveling with their suitcase, or not traveling with a carry-on bag. And he pays the Basic rate, which is the cheapest.

Are you working on opening new destinations?

We opened 19 last year. More than one per month, and 10 were in Central America. That is, origin or destination in Central America. We are launching a new destination, El Salvador-Lima. Our main hub is Bogotá, obviously, and the second is El Salvador. We have a lot of connectivity in El Salvador for North America mainly. We are launching Buenos Aires – Medellín, Santiago – Medellín.

We are always creating new routes, looking for opportunities, and at the end of the day, there are many factors that affect the definition of a new route. Obviously the cost issue is super important. Because you can have a full flight, but if the costs are very high, it will not be profitable. Then a fairly in-depth study is done to clearly see if the route should be profitable or not.

Source: Travel2Latam