Copa Airlines has signed a codeshare agreement with Peruvian Airlines and LC Peru to offer lower fares and better domestic connections for international flights.
The Panamanian airline offers international flights to Lima and Chiclayo via their hub in Panama City, where it provides connections with major airports in North America and Europe.
Copa expects to bring more customers into their direct flights to Chiclayo with the new agreement, which is the first to focus on secondary cities in Peru. The initiative will allow the airline to offer better domestic connections and expand to other Peruvian cities in the near future.
The airline is doubling down efforts to avoid the fate of their direct flight to Iquitos—which never gained enough traction to become economically viable and was eventually suspended. Codeshare flights under this agreement will be offered by Copa and only available for purchase through their commercial channels.
“Twenty years ago, our services were seen as a luxury for a privileged few. Nowadays, commercial flights are a mass transportation industry that requires an evermore efficient and customized service,” Copa Airlines CEO Pedro Hebron told El Comercio, pointing out the pressure Latin American airlines are experiencing to step up their competitiveness, both in service and airfares.
The international flight market in Peru is growing; according to a report by the General Directorate of Civil Aeronautics (DGAC), the number of international passengers has increased 13.6% between January and July compared to the same period in 2016, for a total of 5,830,185 passengers going in or out of the country.
In the same period, Peruvian Airlines and LC Peru transported 23.9% of all domestic passengers while Copa flew 9.4% of all international passengers.
This alliance could help the three parties increase their slice of the cake in an emerging market dominated by LAN Peru and Taca Peru, which provided their services to 69.4% of domestic and 40.2% of all international passengers over the same period.