Aerom xico, is one of Mexico's two major airline companies.
- IATA Code: AM
- ICAO Code: AMX
- Callsign: AeroMexico
AeroMexico was founded in 1934, with the help of Pan Am, who owned 40 percent of the new Mexican airline. The airline was initially known as Aeronaves de M xico. Aerom xico saw few changes for the next two decades. However, during the 1950s, renovation began, and the airline took over various competitor companies, including a carrier called Aerovias Guest, which was the original owner of the routes to Madrid and Paris. (These routes are still being flown by 767s.) Aerom xico added aircraft like the legendary Douglas DC-3 and its successor, the DC-4.
In 1958, services were inaugurated to Los Angeles using the venerable Bristol Britannia. The Mexico City-Los Angeles route would prove profitable for Aerom xico and its North American competitors.
Aerom xico started changing its piston-engined planes for the new jets during the 1960s, joining the worldwide airline industry evolution of that era. The first jet to join "Aeronaves"' fleet was the Douglas DC-8, followed by a series of DC-9's during the mid 60's. This enabled the airline to gradually expand its international services.
The 1970s brought dramatic changes for Aerom xico. The first 2 DC-10-30's arrived the XA-DUG and XA-DUH. The airline changed its name from "Aeronaves de M xico" to its current, shortened version of Aerom xico. During this period the airline's popularity and visibility grew dramatically: in part due to Aerom xico's involvement in Mexican movies. Basically, every time a character in any movie produced in Mexico had to fly somewhere, they supposedly flew on Aerom xico.
The 1980s were tough times for Aerom xico. In 1986, the company suffered its first and only fatal accident outside of Mexico when a DC-9 approaching Los Angeles International Airport was struck by a small Piper aircraft. All 64 passengers and crew on board the DC-9 were killed, as were three on the Piper. Fifteen victims on the ground were also killed.
The plane crew or the airline were not to blame, as the Piper was being flown by a student who invaded a zone that was prohibited for student and private pilots. This mistake cost more than 80 people their lives.
Aerom xico's safety record rates a "A", the highest grade possible, according to Air Rankings Online (see rankings at Airline Rankings (http://www.airsafetyonline.com/safetycenter/reportcard.shtml)). Rankings are cumulative, based on the number of fatal accidents per million flights that the carrier has flown since 1970.
In April of 1988, the airline went bankrupt, because of lack of organization and the bad administration on behalf the Mexican Government who was the owner of the airline at that time. In the reorganization the entire Douglas DC-8 fleet was retired along with the DC-9's -15 series. By October of the same year, the airline resumed operations with 20 aircraft and less one half of their former employees, 400 of which were pilots. The airline was now owned by local banks, private investors and 25% by the pilots union, ASPA.
Revitalized and reinvigorated, Aerom xico resumed operations, added a fleet of 1 DC-10-30, 4 DC-9-30 series and 10 Md-88's. Between 1989 and 1991, new routes were added to Phoenix, Arizona, and all over the western United States. as well as to Lima, Peru. In 1992, Aerom xico started service to Frankfurt and Rome in Europe.
The 1990's were no easier. Aerom xico became a Boeing customer in 1990, placing an order for 26 767/757 airplanes with deliveries between 1991 and 1996. However, only 15 of these planes were delivered. The 90's were defined as turbulent times, and included a fare war caused by start up airlines like Taesa, Saro, Aviacsa and others. Between 1994 and 1995 the 6 DC-10's were retired. The last revenue flight was in February of 1995. In mid 1995 after a fraud of US$75m made by their former GEO Gerardo de Prevoisin, Aeromexico became a part of Cintra along with Mexicana. In 1996 it started a code share with Delta and Air France, and in 1999 became a SkyTeam Member.
Aeromexico today operates a fleet of 5 767-200, 1 767-300, 7 757-200, 45 MD-82-83-87-88, and 10 brand new 737-700. It is looking forward to replace all the MD-80's and 757 aircraft with brand new 737-700/800.
Other facts of interest
- On the El Gordo y La Flaca television show of September 3, 2003, Ra l De Molina accidentally gave Aerom xico a free advertisement, telling actor Andr s Garc a that he knew Garc a would be arriving the next Monday at Miami on Aerom xico.
- During the 1990s, Aeromexico owned a substantial amount of shares of Aeroperu. Similarly, Puerto Rican governor Pedro Rossell announced Aeromexico was interested in forming Aero Puerto Rico. Aero Puerto Rico never went from being anything else than just an idea, however.
- Aerom xico (http://www.aeromexico.com/)
- Aerom xico crashes (http://www.airdisaster.com/cgi_bin/airline_detail.cgi?airline=Aeromexico)