A collage of three images showing an airport flight information display, a region map with flight paths, and a statue in front of an airport terminal building.

Tulum Airport’s Skyrocketing Growth: Surpassing AIFA?

The 'Felipe Carrillo Puerto' Tulum Airport is approaching its five-month anniversary. The terminal was primarily established to alleviate the traffic at Cancun airport. But how does the airspace in southeastern Mexico currently look? And has it overtaken the International Felipe Ángeles Airport (AIFA)? Let's delve into it.

The Yucatán Peninsula's airspace is bustling, particularly over the cities housing the region's busiest airports: Cancún and Mérida. However, Flight Radar data indicates that an increasing number of planes are now congregating around Tulum's Felipe Carrillo Puerto International Airport. This surge in activity is due to the airport starting to receive international flights from American Airlines to the United States since March 28. Other airlines, including Delta, United Airlines, and Air Canada, soon followed suit.

Bernardo Cueto, the Secretary of Tourism for Quintana Roo, anticipates that the Tulum airport will cater to up to a million passengers in its inaugural year. This expectation is bolstered by the fact that Copa Airlines will begin offering flights connecting South America from June onwards. Furthermore, Lufthansa is set to launch a flight connecting the Mexican Caribbean with Germany.

In terms of passenger and cargo volume, Tulum airport has yet to surpass AIFA, located in the State of Mexico. As per the Federal Civil Aviation Agency (AFAC), AIFA celebrated its second anniversary on March 21 and handled a million passengers in the first quarter of the year, marking an 82.9 percent increase compared to the same period last year. In contrast, Tulum is yet to rank among the top at the local level. AIFA also managed 103,932 tons of cargo during the same period.

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However, Tulum Airport might outshine AIFA in one aspect: it is set to have the first direct flight to Europe. Lufthansa plans to debut a direct flight to Germany by the end of 2024. AIFA, on the other hand, also anticipates launching flights to Asia and Europe towards the end of 2024.