Latin America and Caribbean Airlines Passenger Traffic grew 3.7% in January

Dear readers,

Today we launch the first 2019 monthly traffic report with a renewed design and two additional developments: we now also offer the content in Portuguese for readers from Brazil, the largest commercial aviation market in the region, and we offer a new section with the most outstanding routes of the month thanks to the valuable information that Amadeus and OAG, both ALTA members, are providing us to deepen the knowledge of the Latin American and Caribbean market. I hope you enjoy the reading and send us your comments.

2019 began with a percentage growth of 3.7% and close to 1 million additional passengers carried by airlines in the region. The domestic market accounted for 75% of the growth with 717,000 additional passengers.

Chile grew by an impressive 20%, showing in an early stage the benefits of reducing airport fees. The following domestic routes stood out in percentage growth:

  • Santiago-Osorno: 86%
  • Santiago-Easter Island: 43%
  • Santiago-Puerto Montt: 35%
  • Santiago-Valdivia:33%
  • Santiago-Arica:28%

The domestic route that carried most passengers during January 2019 was Rio de Janeiro – Sao Paulo, with more than 700,000 passengers traveling between the 2 cities, accounting for a 3.9% growth compared to 2018, thanks to a 3.2% growth in the number of flights and 4.1% growth in seat capacity.

Argentina also had a remarkable growth above 10%, demonstrating once again the positive results of the “Revolución de los Aviones”.

Much of this growth comes from passengers flying for the first time, so surely the number of travels per capita in the region will improve, in addition to maintaining continuous long-term growth to double again the number of passengers in 10 years.

The intra-Latin American international traffic showed a 2% growth, standing out the international market of Peru – Mexico with a 16.5% growth and Peru – Colombia with 12.9%.

Concerning extra-regional international traffic, the airlines in the region had a high demand from passengers flying from and to the United States, with 23.5% traffic growth between Brazil and the US and 18.4% between Colombia and the US. It also highlights the growth between Guatemala and the United States that practically tripled its traffic thanks to the increase in flights by Avianca (+258 flights compared to January 2018) and the entry into the market of Volaris Costa Rica. Avianca increased its frequencies on the 2 routes it already operated from Guatemala to the United States (GUA-LAX and GUA-MIA) and operated 3 new routes (GUA-JFK, GUA-ORD, and GUA-MCO).

While economies continue to improve in some countries of the region, policies such as open skies are being promoted and taxes reduce, we will have a very promising future.

We began the year with an interesting growth for air traffic in the region, further strengthening our domestic markets and demonstrating that the development of connectivity in the region and decisions that promotes the growth of the industry result in more people being able to fly and make use of the most efficient means of transport.

Good reading,
Luis Felipe de Oliveira

Panama, March 13, 2019 – The Latin American and Caribbean Air Transport Association (ALTA) announced today that Latin America and Caribbean airlines carried 26.8 million passengers in January, up 3.7% – or 957,160 more passengers – from the previous year.
Traffic (RPK) grew 7.2% and capacity (ASK) increased 8.3%, bringing up the load factor to 82%, 0.9 percentage points lower than in 2018. (see table 1).

Monthly Passenger Traffic Growth

Traffic to/from Latin America & Caribbean

Latin American and Caribbean airlines carried 2.8 million passengers to and from Latin America and the Caribbean in January, up 6.1% from the previous year (see table 2). Traffic (RPK) grew 15.2% and capacity (ASK) increased 13.1%, bringing the load factor to 82.8%.

To/From Latin America & Caribbean Traffic Distribution

Domestic Traffic

Latin America and Caribbean airlines carried 20 million domestic passengers in January, up 3.7% from the previous year. Traffic (RPK) grew 5.9% and capacity (ASK) increased 7.3%, bringing the load factor to 81.5%.

International Traffic

Latin American and Caribbean airlines carried 6.9 million international passengers in January, of which 4.1 million were international passengers within the region and 2.9 million outside the region. Argentina-Brazil was the most important intra-regional market, while Mexico-USA was the most important extra-regional market.

Traffic data from the following airlines is included in this report: Aerolíneas Argentinas (includes Austral), Aeromar, Aeromexico Connect, Aeromexico, Air Antilles, Air Panama, Amaszonas, Andes Líneas Aéreas, Aruba Airlines, ASERCA Airlines, Avianca Brasil, Avianca Holdings, AVIOR Airlines, Azul Airlines, Bahamasair, Boliviana de Aviación – BoA, Caicos Express Airways, Calafia Airlines, Caribbean Airlines, Cayman Airways, CM Airlines, Conviasa, Copa Airlines Colombia, Copa Airlines, Cubana de Aviacion S.A, Easyfly S. A., Ecojet, Fly Jamaica, Flybondi, FlyMontserrat, Insel Air, Intercaribbean Airways Ltd, Interjet, Jetsmart, LASER Airlines, LATAM Airlines Group, LC Peru, LIAT , Link Conexion Aerea S.A. de C.V, Maya Island Air, NatureAir, Passaredo, PAWA Dominicana, Peruvian Airlines, RUTACA, Saint Barth Commuter, SANSA Airlines, SATENA, Seaborne Airlines, Sky Airline, Skybahamas, Southern Air Charter, Star Peru, Sunrise Airways, Surinam Airways, TAG Airlines , TAME Línea Aérea del Ecuador, TAR Aerolineas, Tropic Air, VI Airlink, VivaAerobus, VivaAir Colombia, VivaAir Peru, Volaris, and Windward Island Airways International

RPK (Revenue Passenger Kilometers) number of passengers carried times the distance traveled | ASK (Available Seat Kilometers) number of seats available for sale times the distance traveled | PLF Passenger Load Factor, obtained by dividing the RPKs by the ASKs | FTK (Freight Ton Kilometers) number of tons of freight carried times the distance traveled.

About ALTA
ALTA is a private non-profit association at the service of the air transport industry, whose objective is to develop a safer, more efficient and sustainable aviation in Latin America and the Caribbean. ALTA coordinates collaborative efforts across the entire value chain maximizing the impact of aviation in the region’s economic and social growth for the benefit of the industry, the nations and the people served by the air transport. 
Follow ALTA News on Twitter at @ALTA_aero and on LinkedIn
 Contact: Nicole Lorca ( & Juan Sarmiento (

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