Interjet's SuperJet aimed at tackling poorly served Mexican markets

San Antonio
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A gap for the right-sized aircraft on the country's "medium-density" routes, which appeared following the collapse of Mexicana and its regional airline operations in 2010, is one that Interjet intends to fill with its soon-to-arrive fleet of 93-seat SuperJet SSJ100s.

"There are 80 potential routes to cover with the SSJ100," says Alejandro Beristain Mercado, chief financial officer of the carrier, speaking at the Airline Business-organised Network USA conference in San Antonio.

At first Interjet plans to operate its SSJ100s on domestic routes from Mexico City with international services, on routes like Monterrey to San Antonio, starting in 2014, says Beristain.

Other potential Superjet-operated routes include Mexico City-Aguascalientes, Mexico City-Veracruz and Cancun-Miami.

According to Interjet's analysis, in 2010 there were 106 airliners of 50-100 seat capacity operating in the country. These were mainly Fokker 100s, Bombardier CRJ200s and Boeing 717s flown by Mexicana's regional affiliates Click and Link and Aeromexico. This number fell to 71 by April 2012.

"These routes are currently operating with larger aircraft which are sub-optimal for such operations," says Beristain "Interjet and Aeromexico's orders for 50- to 100- seaters will bring the number of aircraft in operations in Mexico to the level where it was in 2010."

In 2013 Interjet will increase its fleet of 37 Airbus A320s to 41 of the type. It will have eight SSJ100s by year-end and continue to take delivery of the regional jet at a rate of one per month until its order of 20 is complete.