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Yet more flights to Fortaleza

Ceará regional authorities have just announced yet more flights to Fortaleza Airport, both for the forthcoming summer season and for 2018. Extra domestic and international routes will bring thousands more visitors to Ceará in Northeast Brazil over the next year.

High season lies on the horizon for Fortaleza and Ceará, key destinations for Brazilians to celebrate Christmas and New Year. And this year’s summer period – December to February – promises to be even busier.

Busy festive period

O Povo newspaper reports that over the three summer months, Fortaleza Airport is set to receive 2,450 extra flights. They will mostly bring tourists from Sao Paulo to this part of Northeast Brazil to enjoy a warm and sunny festive period.

An increase in flights is the norm over the high season – Ceará is, after all, one of the top places in Brazil for summer holidays. However, this year’s rise represents an almost 200% uptick on last year.

The 2016/17 summer season was itself a good one. Some 858 extra flights, up 33% on the previous year, brought thousands more tourists to Fortaleza. Passenger traffic rose by 71.6%. The 2017/18 season looks set to well outpace these figures.

More international flights to Fortaleza

The Air France and KLM partnership recently chose Fortaleza Airport as its hub for Northeast Brazil. The move will translate to ten more flights a week to Fortaleza from Paris and Amsterdam as well as Brazilian locations. And analysts predict a 40% rise in tourism to Ceará as a result of the hub.

Regional authorities have set their sights on other international destinations for 2018 too. The Secretary of State for Tourism, Arialdo Pinho, said that negotiations are well underway for two flights a week to Lisbon and Orlando from October next year.

“We haven’t confirmed the actual number, but the Ceará government is keen for at least two flights to Lisbon and Orlando a week,” he said.

The flights will be operated by Gol Lineas Aereas, but under the umbrella of the Delta-Air-France-KLM joint venture. Gol will use Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft with longer flight autonomy and suitable for the Transatlantic flights.

The route to Orlando will open up the Florida market for Brazilians and bring Florida residents to Northeast Brazil. Flights from Lisbon to Fortaleza already operate, but a minimum of a further two a week would improve connectivity between Europe and Northeast Brazil. Lisbon is the closest point in Europe to South America.

Extra flight to Frankfurt

Regional officials are also in advanced talks with Condor to offer another weekly flight to Frankfurt in Germany. Pinho confirmed to Diario do Nordeste broadsheet that negotiations are almost complete with the airline.

Management of Fortaleza Airport was taken on by Fraport AG, a German company, earlier this year. The company has committed to R$2.2 billion in improvements to airport facilities and to raising its profile.

(Source: Diario do Nordeste, O Povo)

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