Eastern will add a third weekly frequency on the Asunción to Miami route due to demand from Paraguayan passengers, who are filling flights to the US. As of April 26, it will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, reported the newspaper Ultima Hora. According to the director of Migration, vaccine tourism is the main cause of the increase in trips to the US.
The US airline establishes itself in the Paraguayan market and prepares its arrival in Montevideo
Mónica Costa, Eastern’s representative in Paraguay, told the Ultima Hora newspaper that they planned to set up a third frequency between Asunción and Miami in June, but given the high movement of the passenger market from Paraguay, they decided to advance the date to April.
“We began to see the most visible increase in passengers from the second week of March, which reached 86%, which is very high, we registered an average of 210 to 240 passengers per flight. While at this time, the occupancy is 99% ”, explained Costa.
As of April 26 and -in principle- until August 31, the Asunción-Miami route will be reinforced and will offer three weekly flights.
Eastern had resumed direct flights between Asunción and Miami on January 5, after more than five years without direct connection between the two cities, summarizes the Paraguayan newspaper.
First it was a weekly flight to explore the market, affected by the high instability that is characterizing international travel in the midst of the upsurge of the pandemic in South America.
Soon they went up to two flights and before the end of the month there will be three, operated by Boeing 767-300ER aircraft, configured with 30 seats in Business class and 214 in Economy.
The Eastern representative in Paraguay told Ultima Hora that the high occupancy can also be attributed to the fact that connections to the US via Sao Paulo are not operating, due to the ban on the entry of Brazilians to American territory.
“Vaccine tourism” is one of the motivations for Paraguayans to travel to the US, said the Director of Migrations of Paraguay, Ángeles Arriola, in statements to Ultima Hora.
“Although not all passengers travel with the same objective, Arriola herself presumes that the main reason for the exponential increase in passengers is with the objective of accessing the vaccine against Covid-19, within the United States,” the newspaper published .
Eastern Airlines confirmed that its expansion in Latin America, occupying routes that other US airlines have abandoned or reduced to seasonal flights, will continue through Uruguay.
The Miami-Montevideo flights will begin operating on June 3, the company indicated in March, in an announcement made in Miami.
Andrés Sotomayor, regional manager for South America, told the Uruguayan newspaper El País that “they will bet heavily on tourists from the US” to reach four weekly frequencies by the end of 2021
“We go to markets that others do not see and Uruguay is interesting. When we saw that American was leaving, we went for him,” Sotomayor told El País.
Eastern is currently flying to Guayaquil (Ecuador) and Managua (Nicaragua).