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A Frontier A320 in Phoenix (Photo: AirlineGeeks | William Derrickson)

Indigo Partners Reaffirms Order for 430 Airbus A320neo

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) announced that demand for air services is beginning to recover after hitting bottom in April. Passenger demand dropped significantly this year compared to 2019, due to the COVID-19-related shutdown air travel.

Since the second half of last month, and during June, the aviation industry has seen the first signals of aviation long process of reestablishing connectivity. IATA calculated that by the first week of April, governments in 75% of the markets tracked by IATA completely banned entry, while an additional 19% had limited travel restrictions or compulsory quarantine requirements for international arrivals.

“April was a disaster for aviation as air travel almost entirely stopped. But April may also represent the bottom of the crisis. Flight numbers are increasing. Countries are beginning to lift mobility restrictions. And business confidence is showing improvement in key markets such as China, Germany, and the US. These are positive signs as we start to rebuild the industry from a stand-still. The initial green shoots will take time—possibly years—to mature,” said the Director-General and CEO of IATA, Alexandre de Juniac.

In this regard, the Indigo Partners LLC founder, Bill Franke, points out that the scenario for global markets will be marked by an excess of aircraft for a period of two years, generating pressure for manufacturers, leasing companies and airlines, due to the adjustments to the fleets that will be carried out.

It is important to mention, that Indigo Partners LLC owns the low-cost airlines such as Frontier in the U.S., Wizz Air in Hungary, Volaris in Mexico, and JetSMART in Chile. The first one, based in the U.S., operates to Canada, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico and Puerto Rico.

In the case of Volaris, this airline already extends its network throughout North and Central America, with bases in Mexico and Costa Rica. Meanwhile, JetSMART covers Chile, Peru, Brazil and Colombia, with bases in Chile and Argentina. With the last two airlines, the parent company projects to develop a continental air connectivity plan in America.

Recently, Wizz Air announced the opening of four new bases in Europe: in Italy, Albania, Ukraine and Cyprus which joins the bases established in Hungary, Poland, Bulgaria, Moldova, Romania, Czech Republic, Serbia, Lithuania, Macedonia, Latvia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia and Slovakia.

Despite the aviation crisis that we are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the top executive of Indigo Partners stated the continuity of the plans that were previously announced. 430 A320neo aircraft ordered from Airbus will begin to be delivered in 2023 to all the airlines across the group. Frontier, Wizz Air, Volaris and JetSMART.

Bill Franke, stated that he feels comfortable with the order. Indigo Partners is so far one of the few aeronautical groups that shows growth opportunities in periods of crisis. With this announcement, Indigo will seek to transform this crisis into an opportunity and take advantage of its competitors.

Juan Pedro Sanchez Zamudio
Juan Pedro Sanchez Zamudio
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