Mexico has yet to regain its Category 1 aviation safety rating with the U.S. aviation authorities after failing yet another technical review just last week. This means that Mexico will remain with a Category 2 rating which it dropped to in May 2021.
The failure of the Mexican government to regain the excellent category 1 status will directly impact the airline industry because, with a category 2 status, Mexican airlines including Aeromexico, Viva Aerobus, and Volaris are not allowed to add new flights to the U.S.
Mexico will remain in Category 2 status.
The FAA performed a technical review in mid-June this year and came to the conclusion that the Mexican Civil Aviation Authorities did not meet the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) safety standards meaning that Mexico would not earn back its Category 1 status.
The Mexican authorities are confident that the country will regain the category 1 status, however, this could take months, potentially leaving Mexico with a category 2 status until the end of the year.
Remaining in category 2 status will directly impact Mexican airlines as this would prevent them from adding any new routes to the U.S. limiting the number of daily flights to the U.S.
Unable to inject relief to the already strained aviation industry by adding flights between the two countries, Mexico will have to work with the routes it has leaving travelers at the mercy of U.S. airlines and the routes that they offer and hopefully add.
What a Category 2 status means.
Downgrading in an aviation safety rating is not something a county wants for itself. The U.S. government has said that “ a Category 2 rating means that the country’s laws or regulations lack the necessary requirements to oversee the country’s air carriers in accordance with minimum international safety standards, or the civil aviation authority is lacking in one or more areas such as technical expertise, trained personnel, record-keeping, inspection procedures, or the resolution of safety concerns.”(According to the FAA)
The downgrade essentially means Mexican airlines cannot add any more flights to the U.S. until it moves back into a Category 1 rating.
What this means for travelers.
Mexico is a popular tourist destination for millions of Americans every year. Just this year alone, it is expected that 4 million international travelers will visit this country. Many of them are from the U.S.
With such a high demand and airlines already being pushed to the limits with the flights that they do operate, it is going to be extremely difficult to fill the market to meet demand.
By Mexico being in a Category 2 ranking, there won’t be any new flights added for Mexican airlines, and US airlines are prohibited from advertising and selling tickets with their names on Mexican-operated flights.
Mexican airlines are losing a large market share of the aviation business between the U.S. and Mexico. That isn’t only bad for the airlines though, but it also negatively impacts consumers and travelers.
Why? Because if fewer flights and airlines are operating between two destinations, it means that the flights and airlines that do operate have more freedom to dictate the price consumers are paying.
There is essentially less competition between the U.S. and Mexico. Which is bad if you’re a traveler looking for a good deal.
There is a strong indication that Mexico will regain its Category 1 rating with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the near future, however, until then, travelers will have limited amounts of options to choose between certain flights and airlines when it comes to travel between the U.S. and Mexico.
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com