Latin America’s high internet penetration, historically high fares and a growing middle class provide ideal conditions for the growth of the LCC model, but as with other markets worldwide, low cost carriers in Latin America have taken on a variety of permutations in response to varied operating conditions in each individual market. Just as their full service peers have hybridised and adopted characteristics more commonly found in LCCs, many of Latin America’s LCCs have also taken on traditional full service carrier attributes such as premium seating, alliances and codesharing. For example, Brazilian low cost carriers Azul and GOL openly target the lucrative business passenger market and have always stuck to a hybrid model from their inception, in contrast with ULCCs such as Volaris and JetSMART, who adhere to true low cost principles – although even that is changing now with the former forging a codeshare with Frontier.
- What is the strategic reasoning behind the blurring of business models? For the more hybridised LCCs, how do they attempt to incorporate both complexity and cost minimisation? Are the two outcomes mutually exclusive?
- What are the new technologies in the lower capacity narrowbody segment that will drive expansion in the region?
- Are ULCCs deviating from the traditional mould through codeshares and partnerships? Can they maintain their cost advantage in doing so?
- Are the latest LCCs/ULCCs stimulating new markets or taking existing market share?
- Can the hybridised LCCs successfully grow their share of the corporate market?
- Does Latin/Central America have the infrastructure, access arrangements and cost structures in place to stimulate further growth of the LCC and ULCC model?
- Are LCCs under threat from FSCs that have adopted tiered pricing? Do they need to undercut fares even further to stimulate the market? How can this be done sustainably?
- Will cost continue to be a distinguishing factor between the various LCC models?
Moderator: ICF Aviation, Principal, Carlos Ozores
- GOL, Chief Planning Officer, Celso Ferrer
- KPMG, Leader Aviation & Tourism LATAM, Eliseo Llamazares
- Sky Airline, CEO, Holger Paulmann
- Wingo Airlines, General Leader, Catalina Bretón