Alitalia’s first direct, non-stop flight from Rome to Mexico City took off this morning at 10.25am. The inaugural service operated by Alitalia's flagship long-haul Boeing 777 aircraft took off from Fiumicino airport to the Mexican capital with a load factor over 80 per cent.
The new route was launched with a ribbon cutting ceremony performed by Alitalia’s CEO Cramer Ball, Heritage, Arts and Tourism Minister, Dario Franceschini, the Mexican Ambassador to Italy, His Excellency Juan José Guerra Abud and the Head of Aviation Marketing Development of Aeroporti di Roma, Fausto Palombelli.
Cramer Ball said: “This is a very significant day for Alitalia as we continue to build a network of flights from Italy to Latin America so soon after we started to fly to Santiago in Chile. The direct flight between the two capital cities is a great opportunity for both Italy and Mexico. It will encourage business and trade and intensify tourist traffic flows between the two countries.”
The Rome-Mexico City service operates three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday. The flight from Rome Fiumicino to Mexico City takes off at 10.25am and lands at 4.45pm (local time) and the return flight from Mexico City takes off at 11.30 pm (local time) and lands in Rome at 6.35pm the following day.
The times are scheduled to allow Alitalia passengers from 50 cities in Italy, Europe, the Middle East and North Africa to travel to Mexico by taking advantage of convenient connections at Rome Fiumicino.
Italian companies doing business with Mexico will also have the opportunity to ship or receive goods, using the cargo space available in the holds of the Alitalia B777 aircraft.
The 293 seat B777 aircraft is configured in three classes - business, premium economy and economy.
The new Rome-Mexico City route further expands Alitalia’s services to Latin America, where it now flies to four other major destinations; Santiago, Buenos Aires, São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro.
Together with six cities served in North America - New York, Miami, Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles and Toronto) - Alitalia connects Italy to a total of 11 destinations in the Americas.
Tickets for the new Rome-Mexico City service can be bought online at alitalia.com by calling the Alitalia Customer Center on 89.20.10 (from Italy) or +39.06.65649 (from abroad), at travel agencies and at airport ticket offices.
Members of Alitalia's MilleMiglia loyalty programme can earn and redeem miles on the new service, and if they travel on or before 16 August they will receive an extra bonus of up to 5,000 miles.
Alitalia’s new Rome-Mexico City direct service
For the first time, Alitalia is connecting Mexico City and Rome directly, with three weekly flights. The service is operated using the Boeing 777, the flagship of the Alitalia fleet, offering 293 seats divided into three classes (Business, Premium Economy and Economy), with completely refurbished cabin interiors reflecting Italian elegance and style.
Business Class guests can relax in luxurious Italian brand Poltrona Frau leather seats that fully recline to a comfortable flatbed position, and enjoy onboard fine dining menu which has won the prestigious “Best Airline Cuisine” award assigned by the American magazine "Global Traveler” six years in a row (2010 to 2015). The onboard menu features the best of Italian regional food accompanied by wines from the country’s best estates and the “Ferrari Trento DOC” sparkling wines. Alitalia’s new "Dine Anytime" meal service allows guests to decide when they prefer to dine.
On the Rome-Mexico City route Alitalia offers nearly 6,900 seats per month, 1,600 per week. 45 cargo tons will be transported per week, 180 per month.
Members of the Alitalia MilleMiglia loyalty programme will not only be able to earn and redeem miles on this new service, but will receive an extra bonus of up to 5,000 miles if they fly to and from Mexico City within 16 August.
Alitalia in the Americas
Alitalia operates 29 weekly flights to and from five destinations in Latin America: Mexico City (three weekly flights), Santiago (five), Buenos Aires (seven), Sao Paulo (seven) and Rio de Janeiro (seven).
Together with 63 weekly flights to and from six destinations in North America, Alitalia connects Italy to a total of 11 destinations in the Americas with 92 flights a week.
Mexico-Italy economic relations
Italy and Mexico share strong cultural and economic ties, and trade relations between the two countries are increasingly solid.
The Mexican manufacturing industry is a major buyer of Italian technology, particularly in the form of industrial machinery - Italy accounts for 28 per cent of Mexico’s machinery imports - but also of clothing, food, shoes and jewellery.
Bilateral trade grew in 2015, thanks to Italian exports to Mexico worth €3.49 billion (+13.4 per cent) and imports from Mexico amounting to €1.26 billion (+5.4 per cent).
Italy is Mexico's third largest trading partner in Europe, and the tenth in the world. Mexican companies with a growing presence in Italy include Gruma, Avntk and Mexichem, while more than 1,600 Italian companies operate in Mexico, mainly concentrated in the metropolitan areas of Mexico City and Monterrey.
Mexico’s tourism potential
Mexico is a leader country in the Latin America for touristic flows to the main world destinations. About 17 per cent of Mexicans does an international trip at least once a year. North America is the main destination for 70 per cent of Mexican tourist, then Europe (20 per cent) and Asia (8 per cent). Mexico is a major destination for tourists with 32 cultural and natural UNESCO World Heritage sites.
A total of 184,000 Italian tourists visited the Latin American country in 2014 (last data available), while 131,000 Mexican tourists came to Italy, primarily to visit Rome, Florence and Venice.
As well as being a popular destination for religious tourists, Italy is also attracting a growing number of Mexican students, who come for study holidays, to attend university or take part in post-graduate courses.
Sources: Alitalia, Mexican Embassy in Italy and Italian Embassy in Mexico