Aeroméxico Connect


Aeroméxico Connect

Infobox_Airline
airline = Aeroméxico Connect

logo_size = 253
fleet_size = 41 (+14 orders)
destinations = 47
IATA = 5D
ICAO = SLI
callsign = COSTERA
parent = Grupo Financiero Banamex
founded = 1988
headquarters = Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico
key_people = Raúl Sáenz (CEO)
hubs = Gen. M. Escobedo Int'l Airport
Miguel Hidalgo Int'l Airport
Mexico City International Airport
focus_cities = Gen. I. L. Pesqueira Int'l Airport
frequent_flyer = Club Premier
lounge = Salón Premier
alliance = Skyteam
website = http://www.aeromexicoconnect.com/

Aerolitoral, S.A. de C.V., operating as Aeroméxico Connect, and formerly as Aerolitoral, is the regional airline of Aeroméxico operating Saab-340Bs and Embraer ERJ 145 and E-190 aircraft, with crew bases in Monterrey, Nuevo León (Main), Guadalajara, and Mexico City. It operates feeder services to Aeroméxico's hub airports, using 4 digit flight numbers. It is considered the biggest and most important regional airline in Mexico, offering more than 257 scheduled flights daily to 41 destinations in Mexico and 5 in the United States. Its main bases are in General Mariano Escobedo International Airport in Monterrey (ERJ 145 and Saab-340b), Don Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla International Airport in Guadalajara (ERJ 145 and Saab-340B) and Mexico City (ERJ-145 and E-190) . Fact|date=August 2007

History

1988 to early 1990s

The airline was established in 1988 as Servicios Aereos Litoral and became a subsidiary of Aeroméxico on December 1, 1990cite news | title= Directory: World Airlines | work= Flight International | page= 49 | date= 2007-03-27] . It started with a fleet of 4 NAMC YS-11 aircraft in 1988 (XA-ROL, XA-ROV, XA-RPU and XA-RRG) and was originally based in Veracruz. In February 1992 Aeroméxico started another regional feeder airline, Aerovias de Poniente, S.A. de C.V. in Guadalajara using Fairchild Metros. The fleet was replaced and expanded quite fast between 1991 and 1995 and grew to a total of 29 Fairchild Metro III and Fairchild Metro 23 aircraft between the two feeders.

Mid-1990s

In 1991 the main base was moved to Monterrey and in 1992 Aeroponiente started operations from Guadalajara. The pilot seniority list was merged, and a common paint scheme was adopted using the AeroMexico logo. Since 1992 Aerolitoral has been the only source of pilots for AeroMexico with more than 400 pilots transferred until today. In 1993, a small base was opened in Culiacán and after 3 months was moved to Chihuahua. By 1995 the commuter airline had 3 bases with 29 airplanes. There were constant labor problems and a pilot strike in early 1994.

The route network expanded all across the north of Mexico and some routes to the USA were operated for a brief time like Harlingen, McAllen, Corpus Christi and Austin in Texas. The main US routes operated in this period were San Antonio, Texas, Tucson, Arizona, El Paso, Texas and Phoenix, Arizona.

In 1996 the two airlines were merged into AeroLitoral S.A de C.V., and this caused that during early 1997 labor problems continued. There was another pilot strike in the same year. There was a high demand for a bigger airplane in the route network and the Fairchild Metro 19 seater was not enough. After a long selection, Saab 340B's were introduced in late 1997. In 1998 new services to the USA were added from Piedras Negras, Coahuila. and from Chihuahua to Dallas, Texas.

In early 1999 AeroLitoral was operating 29 Fairchild Metros and 6 Saab 340Bs. One Fairchild Metro XA-RYY had been converted to freighter and operations to Mexico City were resumed on behalf of Aeromexpress. In August 1999 a new CEO was appointed and Raúl Sáenz Campos replaced Carlos Treviño Treviño after a long time being at the airline. On December of the same year, the directive board decided to start a fleet renewal process, by replacing the first 3 Fairchild Metro's with Saab 340B's .

Early 2000s

In the period between the years 2000 and 2002 13 more Saab 340B's were added to replace Metros, with a peak fleet of 22 Saab 340B's .On the third quarter of 2001, services to San Diego via Mexicalli and to Zacatecas via Puerto Vallarta and Monterrey were launched, nevertheless, services were discontinued shortly after 9/11 Attacks. On September 6, 2001 there was an accident without any fatalities, it was a Saab 340B's with registration XA-ACK which crashlanded 15 miles southeast of Tijuana. The airplane sufered fuel starvation, due to a false indication in the flight deck fuel gauges, caused by a defective element on the system, reflecting more fuel than it acctually was.

After the September 11, 2001 attacks AeroLitoral experienced a drop in air traffic and downsized the fleet in order to survive. Services to San Diego, California, El Paso and Laredo, Texas were cancelled, San Antonio, Phoenix and Tucson were reduced and with the grow of Aviacsa on the domestic market with Boeing 737-200's invading the most profitable routes from and to Monterrey like Leon, Ciudad Juarez, Culiacan and Guadalajara. The small conmmuter was in a big struggle and in 2002 many employees were laid off, among them 50 pilots. In 2002 services to Los Angeles and Ontario were introduced on behalf of AeroMexico, services to Phoenix and Laredo were cancelled, and later in December 2002 there were still labor problems, and there was another pilot strike.

In early 2003 with a fleet of 3 Fairchild Metro and 22 Saab 340B's, the load factors were recovering like many other airlines around the globe, that same year AeroLitoral announced the first 5 Embraer ERJ 145's orders with deliveries starting in mid-2004. In December 1st. 2003 after operating a peak fleet along 13 years of 28 planes, the biggest fleet outside the US, the last 3 Fairchild Metro were retired. In May 2004 the first 3 ERJ 145's arrived from Brazil to Monterrey and started replacing the Saabs on the routes from and to Monterrey over 1h 50m. The first flights were mainly to Chihuahua, Guadalajara and Cd. Juarez, two more ERJ-145 planes were added by the end of 2004.In this same year a wet lease contract from June 2004 and was signed between Aerocaribe and AeroLitoral. The agreement stated that AeroLitoral, would provide service in the routes on the South East of the country on behalf of AeroCaribe the contract covered the wet lease of 3 Saab 340B's operating the routes to Merida, Tuxla Gutierrez and the shuttle between Cancun and Cozumel. The agreement lasted a year and ended in late May 2005.

Mid 2000s

In 2005 the first scheduled services in and from Mexico City on behalf of AeroMexico were introduced to Ciudad Obregón and Los Mochis using the ERJ 145, during this year 5 more ERJ-145 were introduced to the fleet totaling 10, introducing new routes in and out of Mexico City and replacing slowly Saab 340 service.

In 2006, the 2 operations in Mexico International Airport that started in 2005, in a year turned in a much bigger operation, taking over services to Campeche and Durango, previously operated by Aeromar on behalf Aeromexico and resuming operations to Reynosa, Oaxaca and other AeroMexico non revenue city pairs. By the end of 2006, an ERJ crew base in Mexico City was established, 13 more ERJ's were introduced to the fleet, most of them in addition, bringing the number to 23 by the end of the year.

2007: This year AeroLitoral returned to Austin on behalf of AeroMexico from Mexico City, reopened the hub in Guadalajara with ERJ-145's ERJ crew base and in late 2007 is expected to rise to 29 ERJ 145s and the final retirement of the Saab 340Bs is expected some time by the end of 2007 and the first quarter of 2008. The first 5 brand new Embraer ERJ 190 arrived October 2007 and early 2008. From September 2007 service to Pozarica Ver. previously operated by Aeromar on behalf AeroMexico was resumed with ERJ-145. In November 2007, Aeromexico Connect returned to Phoenix, Arizona.

Destinations

Aeroméxico Connect has grown through the past few years on the mexican domestic market. It has come from being a feeder airline to a key on Aeroméxico's strategy to remain in the industry. As new aircraft have been added since 2004, Aeroméxico has been shifting many of its domestic and short-haul international routes to Aeroméxico Connect. The intended plan of the holding consortium of the two airlines is to keep developing Aeroméxico Connect on those markets where mainline Aeroméxico would not profit, moreover after the addition of the Embraer E-190 that is capable of operating on some longer routes that were formerly served by mainline Aeroméxico with Boeing 737 or McDonnell Douglas MD-80 aircraft.

Fleet

The Aeroméxico Connect fleet consists of the following aircraft (as of 19 September 2008) [http://www.ch-aviation.ch/aircraft.php?search=set&airline=SLI&al_op=1] :

As of 29 August 2008, the average age of the Aeroméxico Connect fleet is 8.3 years ( [http://www.airfleets.net/ageflotte/Aeromexico%20Connect.htm] ).

References

External links

* [http://www.aeromexicoconnect.com/ Aeroméxico Connect]


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