DALLAS – Venezuelan state-owned Conviasa (V0) will fly to Doha, Qatar before the start of the FIFA World Cup, which begins on November 21, 2022. The carrier would be the first Latin American airline with a direct connection to Qatar.
Exploiting non-conventional routes, according to the Venezuelan aviation authority, Instituto Nacional de Aeronáutica Civil (INAC) president, M/G Juan Manuel Teixeira, is part of V0’s strategy, which, he tells local news outlet talcualdigital.com, is “getting results.”
In this regard, the INAC official reiterated that the goal is to attract passengers from Latin America, where routes have been negotiated in countries like Bolivia, Argentina, and Chile, to provide them with the opportunity to travel between Caracas and Doha.
“Conviasa is the only airline that will be able to fly to the World Cup. Qatar Airways [QR] flies to Brazil and Argentina, with Conviasa being the third country to fly directly to Doha, according to the INAC president on radio new station, Unión Radio.
Teixeira says that the new Airbus A340-600 and A340-500 are on their way to the Simón Bolívar International Airport (CCS) and that “we must be flying them,” highlighting the end goal of the strategy, which is to reclaim Venezuela’s position as a connectivity hub for the region.
Venezuela was once an aviation gateway to South America, but the country’s aviation demise post-VIASA and before the turn of the millennium was a boon to the South American airports that replaced Caracas as major hubs for international carriers.
Teixeira did caution that this would be something that needed “to be worked on,” noting that Conviasa is one of the few airlines that has grown in the last two years. The INAC president explains, “We have set a strategy of recovering routes; looking for non-traditional routes to bring passengers from the Americas to CCS, connect with V0 and take them to other destinations.”
He emphasized that Memorandums of Understanding (MoU) were signed between Venezuelan aeronautical authorities and their counterparts in Argentina and Chile, where documents were handed over to begin the process of obtaining permission to operate the route by both private and V0-owned aircraft.
However, he explained that the agreement with Chile was broader than that with Argentina since the Chilean authorities were open to having “multiple designations” of aircraft and without a frequency limit; something that did not happen with the Argentine authorities, where only the number of flight frequencies was increased. However, Teixeira clarified that Argentina is interested in flying to Venezuela again.
Conviasa’s new A340-600 aircraft arrived at CCS from Tehran, Iran. The type previously belonged to operators Mahan Air (W5) and Virgin Atlantic (VS).
Featured image: Conviasa A340-200. Photo: Daniel Veronesi/Airways