Rio de Janeiro Adds New, Low-Cost Flights

Aerial view of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil
Photo by microgen/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

A new, low-cost airline is now selling flights to Rio de Janeiro, the destination’s Convention & Visitors Bureau reports. Norwegian, a Europe-based airline specializing in low-cost transatlantic travel, began selling tickets for direct flights between London and Rio in November, with operations to being in March 2019.

Additionally, another low-cost carrier, the Chile-based Sky Airlines, began operating flights between Santiago and Rio this past October.

According to the Rio CVB, Embratur, Brazil’s tourism bureau, expects the country to add approximately 100 new flights by April 2019. That’s important because affordable air access was cited as one of the top challenges facing Brazil when it was named one of our Emerging Destinations of 2018.

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“Airfares in South America are still higher, in many cases, than, say, a flight to Europe,” Avanti Destinations Chief Marketing Officer John Hanratty told Travel Agent at the time. “There’s an element of sticker shock.”

Embratur estimates that the new flights from Norwegian alone will generate an estimated economic impact in Brazil of nearly $30 million dollars within the first year.

The Rio CVB said that Latin America continues to be the top source market for flights to Brazil, followed by Europe, North America, Africa and Asia. The country is also adding new flights from Israel, Italy, the Netherlands, Portugal, France, the UK, Argentina, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile, Paraguay and the United States – 144 additional weekly frequencies, all told.

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