Could Emirates Launch Miami To Bogota Route?

Could Emirates Launch Miami To Bogota Route?

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While I’m not convinced this will become a reality, it does seem that it’s under consideration…

Colombia & UAE sign new aviation agreement

ICAO’s Air Service Negotiation Event took place earlier this month in Bogota, Colombia. According to Colombia’s Civil Aviation Authority, Aeronáutica Civil, one of the most important things to come from this was a new agreement with the UAE:

“One of the most important results for Colombia was strengthening the commercial activities with the UAE, opening the possibility of new passenger services, connecting the country via Miami.”

According to the agreement, UAE carriers (including Emirates and Etihad) would initially be allowed to fly to Bogota via Miami seven times per week, and that could be increased to multiple daily frequencies after a year. Emirates already operates a cargo route between Miami and Bogota, so this would obviously be about also offering passenger service in the market.

Could we see service between the UAE & Colombia?

Could a Miami to Bogota route on a Gulf carrier become a reality?

I think the way that this is being reported in Colombian media is overstating the certainty of this happening. It’s basically suggested that both Emirates and Etihad are about to launch this route, and it’s a sure bet. That’s not the case:

  • This agreement simply gives Emirates and Etihad the ability to launch this service; everything we’ve heard about this has been on Colombia’s end, rather than from the airlines as such, as they haven’t publicly expressed any interest in operating this service
  • If a UAE to Miami to Bogota route were to launch, I feel strongly that it would be on Emirates rather than Etihad; Emirates recently launched flights to Miami, and Etihad has been cutting destinations, rather than adding them

With that in mind, is there a world in which we could see Emirates add on a Miami to Bogota tag flight to the existing Dubai to Miami service?

  • An Emirates 777 already sits on the ground in Miami for over nine hours daily when the service does operate, and that’s almost enough time for the airline to operate a roundtrip Miami to Bogota flight (almost, but not quite — a slight further schedule adjustment might be needed, but that’s easy to do)
  • There’s already great cargo demand between Miami and Bogota, as Emirates has operated that flight for quite a while; so when you consider the cargo capacity of a passenger version of the 777, that alone could make this route pretty close to breakeven
  • Emirates already operates several fifth freedom flights to the Americas, including Athens to Newark, Milan to New York, and Barcelona to Mexico City
  • It’s very early on a Sunday morning and I might not be processing this correctly, but I believe Emirates could have fifth freedom rights between Miami and Bogota, meaning passengers could book Emirates exclusively between those two airports (someone correct me if I’m wrong)

Assuming Emirates would have fifth freedom flights between the United States and Colombia, I could see this route working out very well, between the passenger and cargo demand. If Emirates couldn’t carry passengers on a fifth freedom basis, then it seems much trickier. Then again, if the cargo demand is there, the route could primarily be operated for that purpose, with passengers being the icing on the cake.

At the same time, this still doesn’t seem like the most efficient way to travel between Bogota and Dubai (and beyond):

  • Bogota and Dubai are 8,478 miles apart, and routing through Miami would cover a distance of 9,352 miles, so that’s quite a detour
  • If the goal is to be as efficient as possible, it seems much more logical for Avianca and Emirates to establish a codeshare agreement or other partnership, where Avianca would carry passengers from Bogota to Madrid, and Emirates would carry passengers from Madrid to Dubai, as that routing would cover a distance of just 8,508 miles (30 miles above the direct air distance)
  • There’s also the general issue of using the United States as a transit hub; the United States doesn’t offer sterile international transit, meaning passengers traveling between Bogota and Dubai would need a visa to enter the US, would need to clear immigration and pick up luggage in Miami, etc.

One thing is for sure — as a Miami resident I would love to be able to fly Emirates first class between Miami and Bogota. 😉

How fun would this be between Miami & Bogota?!

Bottom line

A new agreement between Colombia and the UAE allows Emirates and Etihad to launch new service to Bogota via Miami. That doesn’t mean either airline will launch the route, though.

If the route were to launch, I suspect the most likely scenario would be that Emirates adds a tag flight from Miami to Bogota as part of its existing Dubai to Miami service. Given cargo demand between Miami and Bogota, it seems like that route could perform reasonably well.

Do you think we could see Emirates launch a Miami to Bogota route?

(Tip of the hat to SimpleFlying)

Conversations (19)
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  1. Juan Arbelaez Guest

    This route would be profitable from day one!
    BOG/MIA its #1 city pair for all international routes out of the Colombia and the natural hub for Colombians going beyond MIA within the US and many other international destinations.
    The cargo revenues (flowers) on this route are superb all year around.
    Additionally Emirates product will improve service level again......

  2. Fed UP Guest

    Can you imagine that flight ? Miami and Bogota, two of the most violent places around, oh right, just like MIA airport

  3. David v Guest

    Is etihad and emirates are allowed to sell tickets from Bogota to Miami? or just from bogota to Dubai and Abu dabi !

  4. David Guest

    Is etihad and emirates are allowed to sell tickets from Bogota to Miami? or just from bogota to Dubai and Abu dabi !

  5. Tom Guest

    Regarding the cargo aspect, I'm not sure it's as profitable as you might think. Having worked in network planning for a cargo airline in the region, I can tell you BOG-MIA was a dog of a market (at least in 2010-14) where it occasionally made sense to fly a freighter empty from Brazil/Argentina/Chile back to MIA than make a stopover in BOG due to the low fares in that market. Additionally, most of what comes...

    Regarding the cargo aspect, I'm not sure it's as profitable as you might think. Having worked in network planning for a cargo airline in the region, I can tell you BOG-MIA was a dog of a market (at least in 2010-14) where it occasionally made sense to fly a freighter empty from Brazil/Argentina/Chile back to MIA than make a stopover in BOG due to the low fares in that market. Additionally, most of what comes on that route is flowers which aren't very dense making them not optimal for lower deck/passenger operations. (You really need all the volume that freighter's main deck offers to get anywhere near the payload.)

  6. Wilhelm Guest

    Lucky: airlines don’t have to codeshare in order to cooperate. All they need to do is agree on a through-fare. Almost all airlines offer this - eg Virgin Atlantic and SAS offer this between Scandinavia and the US. No codeshare, not part of the same alliance and no JBA.

  7. Andy Guest

    I doubt it makes sense to serve Colombia via the US. Colombian citizens need a visa to the US, but not to Europe, Russia, the Middle East or Africa.

    And even for those who have a US visa, it’s not very convenient to transfer via the US, passing through immigration just for an hour or two on the ground.

  8. iamhere Guest

    The visa aspect would not be desired if a visa would be required for transit/changing planes. It does not make sense to me why the US cannot redesign their airports to be more accommodating in this regard. Even as a citizen when you arrive off of an international flight and transfer to a domestic flight you need to clear security again. Most other countries do not do that or some only do that for flights to/from the US.

  9. Jorge Guest

    The VISA thing might be a desired thing. Colombians need a visa for almost everywhere so having to have the US visa would help to filter passengers and their visas

  10. Nawaid Ladak Guest

    Um, wouldn t the US CBP Precleaeance facility thats planned for Bogota solve quite a few of the immigration/transit issues?

  11. Lukas Guest

    "...It’s basically suggest..." Should read suggesting.

    1. JB Guest

      So Emirates would be competing on a route against Spirit lol...

  12. Nicolas Guest

    Passengers would need a US visa to travel from BOG to DXB, which could make it difficult

  13. Xtasis99 Guest

    The real obstacle is transit passengers having to discord, fetch their luggage and pass through immigration to fly between DXB and BOG. Yuck.

  14. Jason Guest

    Has the US given emirates fifth freedom rights to carry travelers from the US to Bogota? It works to Europe because the open skies agreements the US has with European countries and the UAE allows for such fifth freedom flying. I’m not sure if the US has an agreement with Colombia that allows that. That’s the question to ask.

    As for avianca carrying passengers to Madrid or Miami to connect with Emirates, fat chance....

    Has the US given emirates fifth freedom rights to carry travelers from the US to Bogota? It works to Europe because the open skies agreements the US has with European countries and the UAE allows for such fifth freedom flying. I’m not sure if the US has an agreement with Colombia that allows that. That’s the question to ask.

    As for avianca carrying passengers to Madrid or Miami to connect with Emirates, fat chance. Those flights are full and not empty. Unless Emirates is prepared to pay Avianca a lot if $$, Avianca won’t displace higher yielding local traffic for a low yield passenger who they’re just handing off to Emirates. TBD.

  15. david Guest

    Again, distance comparison is not very good in this instance. BOG is very high altitude (8661), so EK's planes can't make it nonstop to Dubai. This is the same reason why MEX (7349ft) is served via BCN. In comparison what people normally consider "high" like JNB & DEN are both in the 5500ish ft range.

    1. Xtasis99 Guest

      The real obstacle is transit passengers having to discord, fetch their luggage and pass through immigration to fly between DXB and BOG. Yuck.

    2. Juan Guest

      I hope so David, I would love to fly on any other airline than the ones serving that route currently. In my opinion they are extremely bad in providing decent service.

  16. Tim Dunn Diamond

    presumably, a nonstop BOG-DXB route would be impossible without significant payload restrictions because of the altitude of BOG - over 8000 feet. Thus, the choice is to serve BOG from the Middle East either via a city without local traffic rights or on a segment that has local traffic rights. MIA is one of the few markets from BOG that has enormous local traffic demand.

    As for the legality, 5th freedom rights generally have to...

    presumably, a nonstop BOG-DXB route would be impossible without significant payload restrictions because of the altitude of BOG - over 8000 feet. Thus, the choice is to serve BOG from the Middle East either via a city without local traffic rights or on a segment that has local traffic rights. MIA is one of the few markets from BOG that has enormous local traffic demand.

    As for the legality, 5th freedom rights generally have to be permissible by the origin, destination and transit country's treaties. The US and UAE have Open Skies while the treaty between the US and Colombia has recently been revised. Obviously EK's legal team has to get all of the signoffs but a 5th freedom segment is probably possible - but would be bad news for American if it is possible.

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Juan Arbelaez Guest

This route would be profitable from day one! BOG/MIA its #1 city pair for all international routes out of the Colombia and the natural hub for Colombians going beyond MIA within the US and many other international destinations. The cargo revenues (flowers) on this route are superb all year around. Additionally Emirates product will improve service level again......

0
Fed UP Guest

Can you imagine that flight ? Miami and Bogota, two of the most violent places around, oh right, just like MIA airport

0
David v Guest

Is etihad and emirates are allowed to sell tickets from Bogota to Miami? or just from bogota to Dubai and Abu dabi !

0
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