Ecuador, US Formally Commence Open Skies Pact

The US is Ecuador’s largest international market in terms of passenger capacity.

Credit: Nigel Howarth / Aviation Week

Ecuador and the US have signed an Open Skies agreement, allowing for the expansion of passenger and cargo flights between the two countries. 

According to the US State Department, the US and Ecuador had already been applying the terms of the agreement on the basis of comity and reciprocity since negotiations concluded in December 2021.

Data from Aviation Week’s CAPA show the US is Ecuador’s largest international market measured by departing available seat kilometers. 

Presently, American Airlines is the largest operator between the US and Ecuador with a 34% seat share, followed by JetBlue Airways' share of 25%. Both Delta Air Lines and Spirit Airlines each have a 9% share.

LATAM Airlines Group has an 8.5% share of the US-Ecuador market and United Airlines’ share is 6%. 

LATAM Airlines Ecuador is the country’s largest airline based on seat deployment, with a roughly 29% seat share, according to CAPA. Avianca is a close second with a 28% share. 

LATAM had anticipated operating 67% of its pre-pandemic capacity in the Ecuadorian market in November (127% of 2019 domestic capacity and 50% international).

A new operator, EquAir, entered the Ecuadorian market in January 2022. The airline operates three Boeing 737-700s to four domestic destinations.