Normally, a problem some people face is how to get from Mexico into the United States. Not so this weekend. As the clock struck midnight on Saturday, Mexicana Airlines stopped flying out of San Jose’s Mineta Airport, leaving dozens of passengers stranded. They had few options. The airline also, which is facing bankruptcy, also stopped flying out of San Francisco and Oakland.
For many passengers, the only option was to fly to Guadalajara on Volaris Airline, but there simply weren’t enough seats available for a line of angry passengers that stretched outside the airport door.
Could this be the end of Mexicana Airlines? Its prospects are not good. The company says it needs an immediate infusion of $100 million just to keep flying, as well as some serious concessions from its unions. Earlier this year, pilots rejected a 41 percent salary cut and 40 percent layoffs, while cabin crews rejected a 39 percent pay cut with similar layoffs.
Spokesmen for Mexicana also say they are affected by rising jet fuel prices, fewer travelers because of the recession, and the aftermath of the swine flu epidemic, when revenues plummeted because of a travel warning against visiting Mexico.
The possible demise of the Mexican carrier also spells bad news for Mineta, which saw a 2 percent decline in traffic and a 17 percent decline in daily operations this July. As of this past weekend, the number of airlines flying out of Mineta has suddenly decreased from twelve to eleven.
Read More at NBC Bay Area.