JetSMART Airbus A320

JetSMART’s Colombian subsidiary will start flying on March 14

New airline launched seven domestic routes in Colombia this week. Debut comes months after the collapse of two low-cost carriers

The Chilean airline JetSMART announced the start of operations of its subsidiary in Colombia for March 14th.

The new carrier will initially operate domestic flights, with seven direct routes launched this week. Four of the flights will originate from the capital Bogotá to Medellín, Cartagena, Pereira and Santa Marta, while two flights between Medellín and Santa Marta and Cartagena. The seventh route connects Cartagena to Pereira.

According to JetSMART, the goal is to transport more than 2 million passengers in the first year of operations.

“Today we are making history in Colombia, with the start of sales of our domestic flights in the country. We see enormous potential in Colombia, to bring low-fare air travel to all Colombians, as well as connecting them with international destinations to promote the development of tourism and greater connectivity”, said Estuardo Ortiz, CEO of JetSMART Airlines.

“The ultra-low-cost model is back in Colombia,” added the executive, making reference to the collapse of two budget airlines in 2023, Viva Air and Ultra Air.

Colombian ultra low cost carrier Viva Air collapsed in 2023 (Airbus)

Viva Air even announced a merger with Avianca, however, the Colombian government delayed approving the agreement for fear of a drop in competition. The airline, which was experiencing financial difficulties, ended up closing its doors when there was government approval.

Ultra Air, which had debuted in 2022, closed its doors just over a year later.

JetSMART, which started flights in Chile in 2017, also has operations in Argentina and Peru, where it offers more than 20 international routes in eight countries and 50 domestic routes.

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Indigo Partners has a controlling stake in the airline and also owns Frontier Airlines, Lynx Air, Volaris and Wizz Air.