Chilean low-cost carrier JetSMART this week announced new service launch to Colombia, enterting the market for the first time, with scheduled non-stop service between the country and Chile.
The ariline will operate, starting December 20, 2019, two routes from Santiago de Chile, connecting with Cali and Bogotá.
Inititally, flights to Cali will be two per week, increase to three in January. The Bogotá flights will be three weekly starting January 9, 2010.
Estuardo Ortiz, chief executive of JetSMART, described Colombia as one of the “most important and dynamic markets” in South America, adding that Bogotá and Cali were “important connection points in the region”.
JetSMART will compete with Avianca and LATAM on the Santiago de Chile – Bogotá route.
Ricardo Lenis, director general of Aerocali, the manager of Cali’s Alfonso Bonilla Aragón International Airport, said JetSMART’s launch represents the continuous effort of the airport to attract low-cost airlines that boost the aviation market in the region, “stimulating the growth of passengers and the tourist exchange between both countries”.
Sabre Market Intelligence data shows that traffic between Chile and Colombia has grown strongly since 2014, growing from 263,286 passengers to 521,622 in 2018.
JetSMART said it expects the Cali and Bogotá routes will each transport about 30,000 passengers per year.
In principle, the airline has 14 routes authorized to operate between Colombia and Chile: Barranquilla-Santiago, Barranquilla-Antofagasta, Bogotá-Santiago, Bogotá-Antofagasta, Cali-Santiago, Cali-Antofagasta, Cartagena-Santiago, Cartagena-Antofagasta, Cúcuta-Santiago, Cúcuta-Antofagasta, Medellín- Santiago, Medellín-Antofagasta, Pereira-Santiago and Pereira-Antofagasta.
The airline did not say when those routes would be open.
JetSMART, created by the private equity firm Indigo Partners with more than 15 years of experience in the development of low cost airlines in the world with investments in Wizz Air (Eastern Europe), Volaris (Mexico) and Frontier Airlines (United States), currently has a presence in Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru.