TULUM, Mexico – TAG Airlines, the regional airline, is considering the possibility of operating flights from the Felipe Carrillo Puerto International Airport in Tulum starting next year. This revelation came from Francisco Pahul, the Director of Sales and Institutional Relations for the airline.
In an interview with Excélsior, Pahul disclosed that the airline will be meeting with the authorities of the Olmeca-Maya-Mexica Group, the state-owned company responsible for the Tulum airport project. The purpose of this meeting is to assess the feasibility of launching flights to Tulum. Pahul stated, “We have a meeting with Tulum airport authorities this week, and it’s an option on the table that we’re going to analyze and explore. It falls within the range of aircraft we operate, as we already serve Cancun, and Tulum could also be on our network. We’ve just knocked on the door, and as long as the numbers make sense, we have no issues opting for a flight.”
He emphasized that it’s crucial to determine if there is sufficient passenger demand for the airline to operate flights concurrently at both Cancún International Airport and Tulum Airport. Additionally, the operating costs at the Tulum Airport will be evaluated. Pahul mentioned, “Perhaps next year, we can make an announcement. I’m not sure if the market can support both destinations, but we will analyze it. We have reviewed the project for the Tulum airport, and it looks very promising.”
Pahul ruled out the possibility of TAG Airlines resuming plans to connect the Felipe Ángeles International Airport (AIFA) with Guatemala City in 2024, which was previously considered but deemed unfeasible. He explained, “The idea was there, and there was an intention to do it, but when we looked at the numbers for the type of aircraft we operate, it didn’t work for us. Furthermore, Mexico City is a destination well-served by Aeroméxico and Volaris, and there was no room for us. AIFA is not in the plans; operationally, it’s not straightforward. We would have to carry very limited passengers from AIFA to Guatemala.”
The TAG Airlines Commercial Director also mentioned that the company is currently focused on connecting southern Mexico with Central America. They are considering launching a seasonal route to Huatulco, Oaxaca. Presently, the airline operates in cities such as Oaxaca, Mérida, and Cancún.
Pahul anticipates the arrival of their fourth ATR 72-500 aircraft, which has a capacity of 72 passengers, before the end of the year. Additionally, they are considering the arrival of three more aircraft next year, which will provide the opportunity to expand capacity in the destinations they serve, including those within Mexico.
Regarding the recent government decision to require visas for any foreigner entering and transiting through Mexican airports, the Director of TAG Airlines does not foresee a significant impact on their operations. He explained, “For the outbound market we serve, which is Central America, Mexico has always required a visa, so customers are already familiar with the requirements. What helps a lot is that if they have a U.S. visa, they no longer need to apply for a Mexican visa. We do not see it inhibiting the market because it has always been a requirement.”
In the current year, TAG Airlines has transported more than 14,000 passengers on their Cancún to Guatemala route, emphasizing their commitment to regional connectivity in Central America and southern Mexico.