Azul continues fast deployment of new ATR routes

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Brazil's fast growing Azul has requested authorization to introduce ATR 72-operated flights from its Campinas hub to Presidente Prudente in the western Sao Paulo state.

According to the route request, Azul plans to operate two daily flights, except on Saturdays, when it will operate only one flight pair, to the city, which is located about 400 km west of Sao Paulo.

Presidente Prudente is already served by GOL, TAM subsidiary Pantanal and Passaredo with flights to Sao Paulo and some minor cities in the Sao Paulo state.

Presidente Prudente will be incorporated in early April into Azul's network and will be the fourth destination served by its new ATR 72 turboprop fleet after Riberao Preto, Rio Preto and Uberaba.

The airline is deploying used ATR 72-200 aircraft as an interim solution before receiving later this year the first of its new ATR 72-600 aircraft. Azul ordered 20 of the turboprops at the 2010 Farnborough Airshow.

Azul is using the turboprops to complement its Embraer E-190/195 fleet, allowing it to open new markets, particularly in the densely populated Sao Paulo state.