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WHY IT RATES: Travel agents working with clients who love visiting Mexico will need to take note of the continued growth of the popular destination.-Donald Wood, Breaking News Senior Writer.
The Mexico Tourism Board (MTB) announced that Mexico's global air connectivity continues its growth trajectory with the addition of 1.5 million seats on direct flights to Mexico in 2018. The increase in air connectivity is expected to result in nearly 30 million seats by the end of the year to accommodate travel demand to Mexico's top tourist destinations. Mexico welcomed 10.6 million tourists in the first quarter of 2018, a record-breaking number representing a 12.6 percent increase compared to the 9.4 million documented international visitor arrivals during the same period in 2017.
Mexico is now the 6th most visited country in the world with 39.3 million international visitors in 2017, of which 18.6 million traveled by air. Tourism revenue also grew by 7.2% in the first quarter of 2018 over the same period in 2017, reaching $6.2 billion. Mexico's strong commitment to increasing air connectivity to match consumer demand has led to investments in developing close partnerships with airlines, hotels, and the tourism industry, diversifying tourism products, promoting new and established destinations, and offering travelers Mexico's world-famous friendliness, hospitality and first-class service.
"Increasing air connectivity is a critical component of our tourism growth strategy," said Enrique de la Madrid, Secretary of Tourism. "The expansion of air routes not only offers visitors from all corners of the globe better access to all that Mexico has to offer, it also solidifies Mexico's appeal to the business sector. Mexico is a world of its own, and the demand for access to its beaches, vibrant cities and magical towns is a winning proposition for the airline industry."
As part of its connectivity strategy, Mexico is aiming to strengthen its tourism source market diversification, increasing the number of tourist arrivals from China, Japan, South Korea, the Middle East and India. Several new routes like Hainan Airlines first-ever service from Beijing to Mexico City via Tijuana and Emirates Airlines service between Dubai and Mexico City via Barcelona will make Mexico more accessible to travelers across the globe.
Mexico is continuing to prioritize and grow global partnerships to accommodate the increased international popularity with a host of new air routes, including:
-Boston to Mexico City
-Calgary to Mexico City
-Chicago to Guadalajara
-Chicago to León
-Detroit to León
-New York to Mexico City
-Philadelphia to Mexico City
-Sacramento to Los Cabos
-Salt Lake City to Guadalajara
-San Diego to Puerto Vallarta
-San Francisco to Cancún
-San Francisco to Guadalajara
-San Jose to Los Cabos
-Vancouver to Mexico City
-Helsinki, Finland to Puerto Vallarta
Asia / Middle East
-Beijing to Mexico City via Tijuana
-Dubai to Mexico City via Barcelona
The introduction of the 16 new direct routes in Mexico will contribute to the 1.5 million new seats on direct flights. Mexico's domestic carriers accounted for over half of the capacity increases, led by:
-Vivaaerobus, 318.2% increase
-Interjet, 19.8% increase
-Aeromexico, 7.4% increase
International carriers from North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia, added to the growth in seats, including:
-Eurowings, 107% increase
-Edelweiss Air, 79.7% increase
-Air Canada, 22.1% increase
-Spirit Airlines, 21.4% increase
-Westjet, 19.6% increase
-JetBlue Airways, 16% increase
-Thomas Cook Airlines, 14.8% increase
-Iberia, 11.5% increase
-Avianca, 9.7% increase
-Air Transat, 8.8% increase
-Aerolíneas Argentinas, 8.4% increase
-LATAM Airlines, 7.8% increase
-Air France, 6.2% increase
-Alaska Airlines, 4.6% increase
-Copa Airlines, 3.8% increase
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