Mexico Air Access Improves

Airlines announce plans to add flights and destinations

By: Lisa Jennings

Several airlines and charter services have recently an-nounced plans to expand opera-tions between the U.S. and Mexico.

AeroMexico and Continental Airlines have signed a 10-year al-liance agreement expected to re-sult in direct connections from 13 U.S. cities to 24 destinations within Mexico.

“This agreement will be ex-tremely beneficial to our passen-gers, particularly business travel-ers, who seek greater choice and convenience when traveling be-tween the United States and Mexico,” said Gordon Bethune, chairman and chief executive of-ficer of Continental.

AeroMexico remains commit-ted to its previous code-share agreement with Delta Air Lines, a SkyTeam partner.

Details on the larger selection of destinations and flight sched-ules will be announced later. But the alliance between AeroMexico and Continental will allow pas-sengers to use a single e-ticket for travel on both airlines.

Members of AeroMexico’s Club Premier and Continental’s OnePass frequent flyer programs will be able to accrue and redeem miles on each other’s networks. And airlines will offer lounge re-ciprocity.

In addition, American Airlines announced plans to begin new service on a 142-seat Boeing 737-800 between Dallas/Fort Worth and Cozumel, with one daily roundtrip flight, beginning Jan. 31.

American will also begin flying twice weekly between Dallas/Fort Worth and Ixtapa, with roundtrip flights every Wednesday and Saturday on a 129-seat Boeing Super 80 jet.

And also beginning in Janu-ary, SunTrips will improve flight times and departure days for its Denver-to-Mexico program.

SunTrips, which offers public charters operated by Ryan International Airlines, will offer morn-ing departures and evening re-turns.

The Denver to Cancun/Mayan Coast will operate on a Thursday and Sunday rotation, while Den-ver to Puerto Vallarta will run Tuesdays and Saturdays. Both programs will offer four-, five- and eight-day packages, as well as air only. And SunTrips also offers Cozumel via AeroCozumel.