Copa Airlines low-cost affiliate Wingo will use its fifth Boeing 737 to serve a handful of destinations out of Panama Pacifico that can sustain nonstop low-cost service, says Copa chief executive Pedro Heilbron.
"It will not be more than four markets out of Panama Pacifico," Heilbron told FlightGlobal at the sidelines of the IATA Aviation Day Colombia in Bogota on 27 November, declining to name the markets. "There are a very small number of destinations out of Panama that can sustain nonstop low-cost service."
Based in Bogota, Wingo currently operates four 737-700s but these will be replaced with 737-800s in 2019 and the low-cost affiliate will receive a fifth 737-800 as well.
Wingo already flies to Panama Pacifico, a smaller airport where it is the only scheduled carrier. However, it serves Panama Pacifico with aircraft based in Bogota.
Heilbron says none of the new markets to be served by Wingo from Panama Pacifico will touch Colombia, adding that the markets are already served by Copa's mainline operations from Panama City Tocumen airport.
Colombian low-cost carrier Viva Air Colombia had been the only carrier flying to Panama Pacifico before Wingo began service to the airport in June 2017. Viva Air Colombia exited Panama Pacifico in May this year, citing high airport costs.