Argentina Opens Buenos Aires Domestic Airport To International Traffic

Jorge Newbery Airfield, the second most important airport in Buenos Aires, Argentina, will start operating international flights once again. This news was announced by the ANAC, the Civil Aviation regulator of Argentina. What does this mean?

Aeroparque Jorge Newbery by ANAC
Argentina allowed Jorge Newbery Airfield in Buenos Aires to have international flights. Photo: ANAC

How it will work?

ANAC said that the internationalization of Jorge Newbery Airfield will begin on 11 May. The countries that will benefit from this are Brasil, Paraguay, Chile, Bolivia, and Peru. All but the latter share a border with Argentina.

The national regulator also said,

“This action allows the intraregional flights to and from those countries to start operating again from the Metropolitan Airfield. Since April 2018, this hub currently operates cabotage and international routes to and from Uruguay.”

Still, there are some details that airlines have to keep in check. First, the Government will not allow fifth freedom flights at the airfield in Buenos Aires. Also, to be allowed to operate here airlines will have to use planes with no more than 200 seats.

Finally, according to ANAC, the airlines can’t sell a ticket flight for another country besides Brasil, Paraguay, Chile, Bolivia, and Peru, even if it has a stop in any of these countries. Wait… what? Let’s see what the government of Argentina said,

“The commercialization of these services should be limited to have an end of their respective itineraries in any of the countries bordering Argentina or in Peru.” 

So, with this, we can only assume that the airlines aren’t allowed to have codeshare agreements with flights to Jorge Newbery Airfield. And the Argentinian government’s decision will not benefit every airline in the world, but rather just a few: Aerolineas Argentinas, LATAM, GOL, and Amaszonas. This leaves the low-costs that have transformed the country on the outside.

Low-cost airlines, like Flybondi, will not benefit from international flights at Jorge Newbery Airfield. Photo: Mauricio V. Genta via Wikimedia

Aerolíneas Argentinas asked for this

Aerolíneas Argentinas, the biggest carrier in the South American country, asked the ANAC for this. Since March 2019, Jorge Newbery Airfield stopped operating international flights besides five weekly flights to Montevideo, Uruguay.

This mainly affected Aerolíneas Argentinas, the oldest operator in the country. The national carrier had the majority of its domestic flights at Jorge Newbery Airfield while the entirety of its international fights departed from Ezeiza International Airport.

Earlier this year, Aerolíneas Argentinas increased its capacity to Madrid and New York. Still, the carrier has faced difficulties over the last few years trying to emerge from a country with ongoing economic woes. And to have domestic and international operations separated across two airports more than 45 kilometers apart didn’t help at all.

We tried to contact Aerolíneas Argentinas for a statement, to no avail.

Aerolíneas Argentinas
Aerolíneas Argentinas is the main operator at Jorge Newbery Airfield. Photo: Edgardo Giménez Mazo via Wikimedia

The intraregional connectivity will boost at the Airfield

The main objective of this initiative is to boost the international connectivity of Argentina. ANAC is trying to increase the tourism that enters the country by creating more domestic connectivity through the airfield.

This should, on one hand, benefit the Argentinian economy. But also it will benefit greatly the national carrier, Aerolineas Argentinas.

As Pablo Ceriani, CEO of Aerolíneas Argentinas, said, the carrier has to strengthen its presence in South America. And to achieve this, it was necessary to allow international operations at the Airfield.

What do you think? Let us know in the comments.