Nicaragua: Air Connectivity Remains in Crisis

Since American Airlines, Aeromexico, United Airlines and Spirit announced that they will delay their return to the country until April, local businessmen have given up hope that air connectivity will improve in the coming weeks.

Tuesday, February 23, 2021

Six international airlines operate in Nicaragua, but currently only Copa and Avianca are flying. The remaining four have postponed their return and according to their latest announcements, they would return until April.

Due to the outbreak of covid-19 and the restrictions imposed worldwide, the country was cut off during a good part of 2020. In the last months, air transportation has been reestablished, but in a very slow way, a situation that generates uncertainty among businessmen.

Laprensa.com.ni reports that "... the delay in the resumption of airline operations in Nicaragua is due to the measures and protocols taken by the government. The Ortega regime requests airlines to send a list of their passengers with negative PCR test results to the Civil Aeronautics authorities and to the Ministry of Health, and also demands test results from the airline crew, unique in the region. It also demands that the airlines send information on the type of aircraft they use to bring passengers, as if they were charter flights."

According to Lucy Valenti, president of the National Chamber of Tourism of Nicaragua (Canatur), "... before the crisis, three million people moved during Easter Week, most of them national and intra-regional, and to a lesser extent international. This year possibly only a third or maybe less."

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More on this topic

Nicaragua: Airlines Postpone Restarting Flights

August 2020

Originally it was announced that in the first days of August the airlines operating in the country could resume activities, but due to the requirements, most plan to reactivate their flights in September and in the case of American Airlines, the resumption would be in October.

Due to the covid-19 outbreak, commercial flights to and from Nicaragua were suspended since the beginning of April.

Nicaragua: Requirements for Commercial Flights

July 2020

Commercial flights entering the country will be required to obtain a fumigation certificate for the aircraft and passengers attempting to enter will be required to take a negative covid-19 test, carried out within a period of no more than 72 hours.

Because of the spread of covid-19, commercial flights in the country continue to be suspended; however, airlines anticipate that they may resume operations in early August.

Air Transport: New Market Settings

June 2020

Restructuring of airlines, preference for direct flights, modifications in the routes operated and the use of smaller aircraft are some of the changes expected in the regional air market in the context of the new business normality.

Air traffic has virtually disappeared in the last three months, as governments in Central America have decided to close borders and suspend commercial flights to and from the region's airports as a result of the covid-19 outbreak.

Flight Suspension Increases

March 2020

Since March 17th Avianca suspended all its flights to and from El Salvador, and United Airlines announced that as of April 1st it will no longer fly to Nicaragua.

In accordance with the directives of the government of El Salvador, all Avianca flights to and from that country are suspended from March 17 at midnight, the airline reported.

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