Latin America is one of the world’s most vibrant and promising aviation markets. With the fifth part of our “Spotlight Series,” we take a look at the Latin American aviation market: The Top 10 Biggest Latin American airlines by fleet size.

Top 10 Biggest Latin America Airlines

The “Spotlight Series” is a series of blogs that presents airline and airport rankings for specific regions. The Top 10 Biggest Latin American Airlines is the fifth edition of the “Spotlight Series.” Here are the other issues:

Top 10 Biggest Latin American Airlines

There are many metrics to define the world’s biggest airlines. With some of our latest rankings, we’ve analyzed the world’s airlines according to their safety performanceproduct quality, or capacity. Today, we take a look at the fleet size. First, however, we move away from global statistics and take a Latin American deep dive. Moreover, and contrary to many other rankings, we incorporated Corona-related reductions. Therefore, our ranking contains the most up-to-date fleet figures.

On top of that, it is essential to mention that we counted the aircraft of single airlines — not airline groups! Therefore, the ranking might look different from other similar rankings. As an example: LATAM is represented several times since the group operates different airlines in different countries.

Top 10 Biggest Latin American Airlines — Key Take-Aways

If you don’t have time to go through the complete ranking, we put together some key takeaways about the ten biggest Latin American airlines.

Mexico and Brazil
When most people think about Europe’s biggest airline, names like Lufthansa, Air France, or Ryanair come up. However, when looking at single-airline-fleets, EasyJet currently wins the trophy of the biggest European airline.

LATAM As Airline Group
Out of Europe’s ten biggest airlines, only two made it on the list of the world’s top ten biggest airlines: EasyJet and Turkish Airlines. However, with Air France, British Airways, Lufthansa, and Ryanair, four additional airlines rank among the world’s top 20.

Argentina Surprises (negatively?)
Based on the size of the country and population, one could expect that the list of Latin America‘s biggest airlines contains some carriers from Argentina. However, and surprisingly, Aerolineas Argentina is the only airline from Argentina represented in the Top 10. Moreover, Aerolineas Argentina‘s fleet size is even relatively small compared to the big players in Latin America.

Top 10 Biggest Latin American Airlines

#10 — VivaAerobús

Airline Ranking
Mexico-based low-cost carrier, Vivaaerobús, kicks off the list of Latin America’s biggest airlines. The airline operates a fleet of more than 45 aircraft. As a result, the airline is also Mexico’s third-largest airline by fleet size. However, on a global level, Vivaaerobús doesn’t rank in the top 50.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Information
Founded in 2006, Vivaaerobús is a Mexican low-cost airline. The carrier is wholly owned by Mexico’s largest bus company, IAMSA. Vivaaeroús commenced operations on 30th November 2006 and operates out of bases in Cancún, Mexico City, and Monterrey. The airline flies to almost 60 destinations in the U.S., Central, and South America.

Vivaaerobus — By aeroprints.com, CC BY-SA 3.0

#9 — Aeroméxico

Airline Ranking
With 72 aircraft, Mexico’s flag-carrier ranks 9th among Latin America’s biggest airlines. Based on fleet size, Aeromexico is the country’s second-largest carrier. Nevertheless, the airline isn’t ranked among the world’s biggest airlines.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Information
Aeroméxico is the Mexican flag carrier. Founded in 1934, the airline is based in Mexico City. The capital also serves as the airline’s central hub. The airline operates a Boeing-only fleet and flies to almost 90 destinations in North America, Asia, Europe, and Latin America.

Aeroméxico – By Eric Salard – N861AM, CC BY-SA 2.0

#8 — Copa Airlines

Airline Ranking
With a current fleet size of 75 aircraft, Panama’s Copa Airlines ranks 8th among the biggest Latin American airlines. Moreover, the airlines on the upcoming ranks aren’t out of reach when looking at the fleet size. Nonetheless, Copa doesn’t rank among the world’s largest airlines based on the current fleet size.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
Copa Airlines was founded in 1944 and is Panama’s flag carrier. The airline is based in Panama City, which also serves as its main hub. As part of the StarAlliance airline alliance, Copa Airlines flies to 80 destinations in 33 countries in North America, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean.

Copa Airlines — By Adam Moreira (AEMoreira042281) – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

#7 — Aerolineas Argentina

Airline Ranking
Argentina’s biggest airline, Aerolineas Argentina, ranks 8th among Latin America’s biggest airlines. The carrier operates a fleet of 80 aircraft. However, and similar to the already introduced airlines, Aerolineas Argentina doesn’t rank on the list of the world’s top 50 biggest airlines.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
Aerolineas Argentia is the country’s flag carrier and biggest airline. The airline was founded in 1949 and is based in Buenos Aires. The carrier is part of the SkyTeam airline alliance. At the moment, Aerolineas Argentina flies to almost 60 destinations in North America, Central America, South America, and Europe.

Aerolineas Argentina – Source: Wikimedia

#6 — Avianca

Airline Ranking
With seven aircraft more than the Aerolineas Argentina, Colombia’s Avianca ranks sixth on the list of Latin America’s biggest airlines. Accordingly, Avianca is also Colombia’s biggest airline by fleet size.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
Avianca is the Colombian flag carrier. Founded in 1919, the airline is one of the world’s oldest airlines. The airline’s headquarter and main operations hub is in Bogota. Moreover, Avianca is part of the Star Alliance airline alliance. Avianca operates flights to more than 60 destinations in North America, Latin America, and Europe.

Avianca — By Stevenhe1997 – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

Top 10 Biggest Latin American Airlines: Position 5 – 1

#5 — Volaris

Airline Ranking
Mexico’s Volaris kicks off the top 5 of Latin America’s largest airlines. Moreover, based on its fleet size, Volaris is the country’s biggest airline. However, with an impressive fleet of 91 aircraft, the carrier doesn’t rank among the world’s biggest airlines.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
Founded in 2004, Volaris is a relatively new Latin American airline. However, Volaris is Mexico’s biggest airline by fleet size. The carrier operates out of its hubs in Guadalajara, Mexico City, and Tijuana. At the moment, Volaris flies to almost 70 destinations — mainly in Mexico and the United States.

Volaris — By ProtoplasmaKid – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

#4 — GOL

Airline Ranking
With GOL on position four, we enter the world of 100+ fleet size. Actually, there are only four Latin American airlines that operate a fleet size bigger than 100 aircraft. With 128 aircraft, GOL is Brazil’s third-largest airline by fleet size. Moreover, GOL is also the first airline that ranks among the world’s biggest airlines (position 35).

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
GOL is a Brazilian low-cost airline and one of the country’s biggest airlines. The carrier was founded in 2000 and operated out of its bases in Brasilia, Pinto Martins, Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, and Sao Paulo. GOL operates a Boeing-only fleet and serves 60 mainly Brazilian destinations.

GOL — By Rafael Luiz Canossa – 737-800, CC BY-SA 2.0

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#3 — LATAM Chile

Airline Ranking
As part of the LATAM Group, LATAM is Chile’s biggest airline. Moreover, with a fleet of 135 aircraft, LATAM Chile ranks third among Latin America’s biggest airlines. Moreover, LATAM Chile also ranks 34th among the world’s biggest airlines.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
LATAM is the largest airline group in South America, with subsidiaries in Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Peru. The airline operates a combined fleet of more than 300 aircraft from hubs in different countries. Moreover, LATAM operates flights to more than 120 destinations. Pre-COVID, the airline had 43,000 employees.

File:LATAM Brazil Airbus A350-900 F-WZGU (to PR-XTE) (28915136883).jpg
LATAM Aircraft, Source: Wikipedia

#2 — LATAM Brasil

Airline Ranking
LATAM Brasil is another airline of the LATAM Group. LATAM Brasil is Brazil’s second-largest airline and ranks 33rd among the world’s biggest airlines. The carrier currently operates almost 140 aircraft.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
LATAM is the largest airline group in South America, with subsidiaries in Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Peru. The airline operates a combined fleet of more than 300 aircraft from hubs in different countries. Moreover, LATAM operates flights to more than 120 destinations. Pre-COVID, the airline had 43,000 employees.

#1 — Azul Airlines

Airline Ranking
And finally, the title of Latin America’s biggest airlines by fleet size goes to Azul Airlines. The relatively new airline (founded in 2008) operates a fleet of almost 150 aircraft. Therefore, Azul is only a few aircraft bigger than LATAM Brasil. From a global point of view, Azul ranks 31st.

10 Biggest Latin American Airlines -

Airline Background
Azul is a relatively young South American low-cost carrier. The Brazilian airline was founded in 2008 and is based in Sao Paulo. The carrier operates out several hubs, such as Belo Horizonte, Sau Paulo, or Recife. Besides being the country’s biggest airline by fleet size, Azul is also Brazilian’s third-largest airline in terms of domestic RPKs and second largest in terms of international RPKs.

By N509FZ – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0

Biggest Latin American Airlines — What’s Your Opinion?

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Benjamin is a content-maniac, music-lover, aviation-enthusiast, and CEO of Information Design (in this order). His daily business revolves around pioneering solutions to change the way airlines, airports, and aviators use information. His visions are based on expertise gained in more than 15 years in the industry and working with renowned airlines + airports worldwide.

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