Routes Americas Gathers Momentum

Routes Americas, which is being held in association with ALTA, is the only network planning forum for the entire Americas and next year will take place from 10 – 12 February. Since the inaugural event, which took place in Cancun, Mexico, the event has seen year on year growth with over 350 delegates expected to attend the sixth Routes Americas in 2013.

The event will take place in Cartagena de Indias, the main gateway to the Colombian Caribbean, situated on the Northern coast of Colombia. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1984 this stunning historic city has the ultimate combination of Spanish heritage and Caribbean flavour. Hosted by Sociedad Aeroportuaria de la Costa S.A, and its partners; Cartagena de Indias, Pro Export Colombia and The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Tourism, Colombia, the event will take place at the Hilton Cartagena Hotel which is surrounded by the Caribbean Sea on three sides and ideally located just 10 minutes from the ancient walled city.

Routes Americas is the only event that brings together key players in the airline and airport industry from the North, Central, South America and the Caribbean for strategic networking on air service development. With legacy, low-cost, regional and charter carriers all in attendance, airlines are represented by senior key personnel from both domestic and international planning teams that are responsible for making decisions on both new and existing routes.

Almost 30 airlines have already registered to attend next year’s event including previous attendees; Delta Air Lines, US Airways, American Airlines, Spirit Airlines, JetBlue Airways and Southwest Airlines. Recent registrations have come from Brazilian regional carrier AZUL who will attend their very first Routes event, COPA Airlines, Avianca who were recently announced as one of the official carriers for the event and start-up carrier VivaColombia. Over the coming months many more registrations are expected from carriers across the Americas and destinations further afield including some European carriers. Click here for the complete and most up to date attendee list.

The 2013 event looks set to build on last year’s successes attracting registrations, even at this early stage, from many senior level airline delegates including Enrique Beltranena, CEO of Volaris, who have recently launched a number of new North American Routes, Barry Biffle, CMO of Spirit Airlines, Nicholas Rhoad, SVP Commercial Planning for Aeromexico and Nicolas Ferri, Delta Air Lines’ SVP Latin America and Caribbean.

Further to this impressive list of early registrations to the event are some confirmed Route Exchange Airline Briefings, now a staple of the Routes events’ programmes. Exclusively available to Airports and Tourism Authority delegates, Route Exchange Airline briefings are held in dedicated lounges and are the only place to gain an insight into the planning structure of an airline. In turn a Route Exchange Briefing will allow and airline to identify specific markets of interest and relevant information that they require from those markets to deliver new routes.

So far both WestJet and Alaska Airlines have committed to deliver a Route Exchange Briefing during the event. Arik De, Network Planning Manager for WestJet will deliver a briefing detailing the carrier’s plans for its new subsidiary airline, WestJet Encore. Delegates attending the Alaska Airlines Briefing will hear from their AAG Network Planning, Ben Munson, who will discuss how, having ordered 50 Boeing 737 MAX in October 2012, to deal with how this will impact their route development plans. The aircraft will be delivered between 2015 and 2022 and is the carrier’s largest ever order of aircraft.

Early indications show that this event is not to be missed by those wishing to discuss route development across the entire Americas region, for more information and to register your place click here.

A preview of Routes Americas 2013, Cartagena de Indias, Columbia. 10 - 12 February 2013.
Richard Maslen

Richard Maslen has travelled across the globe to report on developments in the aviation sector as airlines and airports have continued to evolve and…