On its first day of operations, AIFA will operate only six commercial flights; another 50 will be of a military nature.
For March 21, the date on which the Felipe Angeles International Airport (AIFA) is scheduled to open, only 6 commercial flights will operate, although another 150 could operate, but of a military nature.
So far, only two low-cost Mexican airlines, Volaris and Viva Aerobus, have announced operations at the new airport, which will have a total cost of 75 billion pesos and which was planned to relieve congestion at the International Airport. of Mexico City (AICM).
In a review made by Forbes Mexico of the reservation system of both airlines, it was found that Volaris has scheduled two flights from AIFA to Tijuana and one more to Cancun, with their respective return flights.
In an interview with Grupo Fórmula, Ángel Vidal, supervisor of the AIFA Control Tower, confirmed that by March 21 there will only be 6 operations of a civil nature, but he trusted that as the months’ progress, operations will increase.
“Military operations we are counting around 150 a day plus the civil aircraft that are going to land, which up to now we have the certainty of 6 daily flights, but we believe that in no more than a month they will increase operations,” said Vidal.
On the part of Viva Aerobus, for the opening day, two flights are scheduled to go to Guadalajara and Monterrey, as well as their flights to AIFA.
On its first day from Felipe Ángeles, Volaris will offer two flights to Tijuana, one direct and one more with a stopover in Cancun.
Flight Y4 1010 bound for Tijuana from AIFA will take off at 1:20 p.m. and is expected to arrive in the city of Baja California at 4:05 p.m.
Flight Y4 1012 will depart from the airport located in the State of Mexico at 1:27 p.m. and is expected to arrive in Tijuana at 11:00 p.m., after making a connection of around 4 hours in Cancun.
The first flight to land at the new aerodrome will be Viva Aerobus from Guadalajara, Jalisco. Flight VB-3280 is scheduled to take off from that state at around 9:45 in the morning and land at the AIFA at 11:00 in the morning.
Then, VivaAerobús flight VB-4410 from Monterrey, Nuevo León, will land at AIFA at noon after taking off from Mariano Escobedo airport at 10:30 in the morning.
On Volaris’ side, its flight Y4 1011 from Tijuana will land at 12:45 in the afternoon after having flown 3 hours 25 minutes.
Its second flight, the Y4 1013, will leave Tijuana at 12:49 in the morning on March 21 and after making a stopover in Cancun, it will arrive at AIFA at around 12:42 in the afternoon.
Since last January 1, Navigation Services in the Mexican Air Space (Seneam) already operates the AIFA control tower prior to its inauguration.
Seneam provides aerodrome flight information services, automatic terminal information, radio navigation aids and aeronautical telecommunications, issuance of meteorological reports and forecasts, and operating procedures with Military Air Base No. 1.
So far, the arrival or departure of international flights from the Felipe Ángeles has not been foreseen. The airline’s Air France, KLM, and Lufthansa have flatly rejected that in the immediate future, the AIFA is entering their expansion plans.
Only the Venezuelan airline Conviasa has expressed interest in flying to AIFA, but it would do so by May of this year.
“Conviasa maintains a large flow of travelers between Venezuela and Mexico, so the opening of this flight would be ideal to strengthen commercial operations and tourism between both nations,” said Ramón Velásquez Araguyán, president of the airline in an interview.
Aeromexico, one of the main airlines in the country, reported that although AIFA is a world-class port, so far it has not planned to change operations.
On the contrary, the airline will have 20 daily departures from Terminal 1 of the AICM to nine national destinations: Campeche, Durango, Los Mochis, Matamoros, Nuevo Laredo, Reynosa, Tampico, Zacatecas and Zihuatanejo.
According to infrastructure experts consulted by Forbes Mexico, one of the main challenges that AIFA will face in order to be attractive to airlines will be its connectivity.
Until December of last year, and with 80% progress in its construction, the AIFA only has a safe access road since it has only opened the Siervo de la Nación highway that runs from Avenida Gran Canal, at the height of Rio de los Remedios, to Venta de Carpio, in Ecatepec.
A little over two months after its commissioning, the Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT) is still working on the expansion of the México Pachuca highway and on the connection of the AIFA with the Circuito Exterior Mexiquense.
The extension of the Suburban Train from the Lechería station to the new area terminal is expected on this list until the first half of 2023.
Of the two Mexibus routes that were announced to connect the public with the new airport, only Line 1 that runs from Ciudad Azteca, in Ecatepec, to Ojo de Agua, in Tecámac and that would be extended to AIFA remains as a promise.
Forbes Mexico found in November that the expansion work on this route had not started.
On its first day of operation, AIFA will have 14 boarding gates. The passenger terminal building is expected to have an area of almost 8,51 square meters in five groups of counters.
The groups of counters will have 100 conventional, 86 self-service kiosks, and 20 drop-off counters for the self-documentation of luggage.
In addition, the airport will have 22 security bands equipped with X-rays.
In the next 15 years, when the terminal operates at its maximum capacity, that is, in 2037, it will be able to handle around 100 million passengers a year.