TAME becomes first airline to leave Venezuela in 2018

QUITO – The Ecuadorian state airline Tame has announced the suspension of its flights to Venezuela after the difficulties of operating in the country governed by Nicolás Maduro.

The last flight departed on Saturday from Maiquetía to Bogotá and from there to Quito. The decision had been announced last October and no more tickets were sold since November.

Tame is the latest to join a long list of airlines that no longer operate the country such as Aerolineas Airlines, Avianca, United Airlines, Dynamic Airways, Aeromexico, Lufthansa, Alitalia and Air Canada.

The company says the route stopped being profitable and due to technical problems at Simón Bolívar International Airport in Maiquetía, newspaper El Comercio reported.

Ignacio Vallejo, CEO of Tame, also informed the local newspaper that until October 2017 Venezuela had a debt of US$6 million with the airline, a situation that was already solved.

With the passing of days, Venezuelans are even more isolated and with very little chance of traveling by air.

So serious is the situation that in December of 2017, the International Air Transport Association (IATA), an organization that brings together all the airlines, announced the closure of its offices in Venezuela.

Only six Latin American airlines continue to operate in Venezuela compared to 24 in 2014. International traffic in Venezuela has dropped by 65% since its peak in 2013.