MEXICO CITY (AP) — The small Mexican airline Aeromar announced Wednesday it is closing down due to financial problems after failing to recover from a pandemic downturn.
The regional carrier operated 21 routes in Mexico and flew to McAllen and Laredo in Texas and Havana, Cuba. It specialized in flying routes between Mexico City and beach resorts.
Aeromar said in a statement that it had not been able to recover from financial difficulties stemming from the global downturn in travel caused by the COVID-19 pandemic starting in 2020.
The Mexico City international airport said in a statement that Aeromar owed about $27.5 million in fees, services and other debts.
The airline did not say what options would be available to travelers who already purchased tickets. It was also unclear what would happen to the company's nearly 700 employees.
The Labor Department said it was working to see if other airlines could hire the Aeromar staff.
The airline was founded in 1987 with a fleet of about ten ATR turboprop airplanes. It was the second Mexican carrier to go broke as a result of pandemic. In December of 2020, the low-cost carrier Interjet ceased operations.
Aeromar's announcement left Mexico with only three main domestic carriers: Aeromexico and the low-cost airlines Volaris and Viva Aerobus.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has proposed creating a state-run airline operated by the armed forces. He has also angered airline executives with proposals to allow foreign airlines to operate domestic routes in Mexico.