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Recorded at CAPA Latin America Aviation & LCCs Summit, 25-26 Aug 2022

Aircraft Review: Latin airlines fortify their fleets for fierce competition

During the past year Latin American airlines have worked diligently to build their fleets to be competitive as the COVID-19 pandemic moves to an endemic state.

Airlines restructuring in Chapter 11, and those fortunate enough to weather the crisis without seeking formal bankruptcy protection, have engaged in a flurry of activity to ensure that they will remain competitive for years to come. 

The fleet moves made by airlines in the region is unsurprisingly tilted towards next generation narrowbodies, as operators look to gain fuel efficiency and in some cases, to compete more effectively with low cost operators.

It is not a surprise that next generation narrowbodies are in high demand in the region. Those aircraft have improved fuel burn and help lower unit costs, which is an increasingly competitive benchmark among airlines in Latin America.  

Narrowbodies dominate Latin America's aircraft order book with CAPA’s Fleet database showing that 2,262 aircraft are in service in Latin America and 790 on order. Of the aircraft on order, narrowbody jets represent 91% and Airbus accounts for nearly 70% of the narrowbodies on order in the region.

It is not a surprise that next generation narrowbodies are in high demand in the region. Those aircraft have improved fuel burn and help lower unit costs, which is an increasingly competitive benchmark among airlines in Latin America. 

Key points:

  • Avianca's future fleet rests on order of more than 80 narrowbodies.

  • Viva, has stated that it is aiming to operate 50 Airbus narrowbodies by 2025, and has 24 A320neos on order. 

  • Narrowbodies are also the backbone of LATAM's fleet.

  • Aeromexico exits Chapter 11 and aims to end 2022 with 145 aircraft.

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