Mexican army to relaunch Mexicana with military planes due to leasing setback

Mexicana Airbus A320
Aero Icarus / Flickr

Mexico’s revived airline, Mexicana, will launch operations using military-owned aircraft after failing to secure a leasing agreement.  

The airline, which is run by the nation’s army, has planned to lease 10 737-800 aircraft from Boeing when the relaunch was announced in August 2023.    

However, local media reported that the arrangement fell through and Mexicana, or Mexicana de Aviación, will begin operations with planes borrowed from the Mexican Air Force. 

Mexican news outlet Reforma reported that the airline will launch using two Boeing 737-800s and one Boeing 737-300. 

Enrique Vallín Osuna, General Director of the Federal Civil Aviation Agency (AFAC), said in a press conference that the three aircraft will be checked to ensure they are fit to take on commercial flights.  

It is also expected that two Embraer E145s will be wet leased from the regional airline, TAR.  

Mexicana hopes to begin operations on December 26, 2023, however until the airline is granted an air operator certificate, it will be unable to sell tickets. 

“Mexicana is defining what the routes will be according to the availability of equipment it will have for that date,” the Secretary of Infrastructure, Communications and Transportation, Jorge Nuño, said. 

The airline is still considering which routes it will operate across. The government is currently looking at operating 20 routes among Mexico’s biggest and midsize cities, plus its popular tourist destinations, such as Cancun.   

The design of the aircraft will be painted in green, white and red, with the new name of the airline, Mexicana de Aviación, also included.   

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