Just a few days ago, the President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, called for foreign airlines to be allowed to operate domestic flights in Mexico.
Currently, foreign airlines are prohibited from flying between domestic destinations. By law, they are only allowed to fly into the country, say, from San Diego to Los Cabos.
But, the President reportedly wants to increase competition as a way to lower the price of flights, and is proposing the law be changed or removed.
“Let foreign airlines come in, from Europe and the United States, so that they can operate flights inside the country,” he said. “Let’s open it up to competition.”
If this scenario did occur, American travelers would reap the benefits. Frequent fliers would gain expanded benefits in terms of being able to accrue status and use miles with their favorite airlines south of the border.
Mexican residents would also benefit, so long as prices did indeed go down as a result. The “more airlines, lower prices” logic has worked in other destinations, at least in the short term. Hawaii, for example, is home to an airfare battle between Southwest and Hawaiian Airlines that has resulted in cheaper flights for customers.
Such a move by Mexico would surely be big news. In addition to price cuts, it could also improve current or create new connections at underserved airports.
But is it empty political posturing or something more?
We’ll keep an eye out to see if it gathers any real momentum.