GOL Connects Unserved Domestic Points

The route starts on October and is expected to attract two-way leisure traffic.

Credit: Pulsar Imagens / Alamy Stock Photo

Brazil’s GOL Linhas Aéreas is launching a new domestic route that will connect Rio de Janeiro with Caxias do Sul, a city in the southern Serra Gaúcha region known for its winemaking.

Flights between Rio de Janeiro Santos Dumont (SDU) and Caxias do Sul (CXJ) will begin on Oct. 18, operating three times per week. The airline plans to deploy Boeing 737-700 and 737-800 aircraft on the sector, with capacity for 138 and 186 passengers respectively.

As the two destinations are currently unserved by nonstop flights, GOL said its entry to the market would cut the journey time between the cities to 1 hr. 55 min.

The carrier’s network planning manager Bruno Balan added that the service also supports domestic tourism, saying he expects leisure passengers in each direction.

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He explained that the Serra Gaúcha region is famed for winter tourism during ski season but should be seen as a year-round destination thanks to its scenery and vineyards.

Flights will operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, departing SDU at 11.30 a.m. and arriving in CXJ at 1.25 p.m. The return service leaves at 2.05 p.m. and arrives back in Rio de Janeiro at 3.55 p.m.

The schedule will change on Oct. 29 when the outbound service from SDU becomes an 11 a.m. departure, and the return from CXJ switches to a 1.45 p.m. departure.

According to data provided by OAG, GOL is currently offering 139 nonstop domestic routes in Brazil and 612,012 weekly seats. This compares with 143 routes and 816,846 weekly seats at this time in 2019.