Visiting or considering moving here and coming from Europe? Sadly your airline options just got a bit lesser in total number of flights weekly.
Spain’s Iberia Airlines, wholly-owned by the same company that owns British Airways, and a partner of oneworld airlines such as American, Finnair, LAN and others, is the only nonstop from Europe to Uruguay. They are having serious financial issues, and in response have dropped many routes and cut back frequencies on others. (“Nonstop” is North American English for what everybody else calls a “direct” flight. In North America and especially in the US, “direct” can misleadingly mean a flight with a stop, or even a flight where you change planes. Silly USA.)
Here is an article from El Observador (en español) explaining the situation.
Not to worry, they are still going to fly it 4 times weekly reduced from six. Of course if you were already ticketed on one of the 2 days per week they are dropping…. I suggest you call your airline or travel agent. They should be able to rebook you on one of the other days. Or move you onto a connection with one of their oneworld partners like LAN to get you to South America with excellent, though slightly backtracked, connections from Lima, Perú or Santiago, Chile.
So you can still get here using or earning your FF miles in one of the many oneworld schemes.
There is no other nonstop connectivity from Europe, but between Star Alliance’s Lufthansa, SWISS International, and (for the time being still in Star) TAM Brasil, connecting to TAM or to AviancaTaca or Copa, you can get here on awards or earning miles in Miles & More, United Mileage Plus, AviancaTaca LifeMiles (my program nowadays), or others. If you must transit North America, you can still avoid the ludicrous USA regulations and lack of transit-without-visa by using Air Canada to Toronto and then their Toronto-Santiago flight. It also has a “stub” that continues on same-plane to Buenos Aires, and AC does also fly to Sao Paolo, Brasil (from there on TAM) plus some other South America locations.
If you are a SkyTeam alliance FF scheme member, such as with AirFranceKLM group, Russia’s Aeroflot, Delta SkyMiles (just say NO if you are in Europe – really bad program for you, or really for anybody wanting free tickets), or any of the others, you can get to Mexico and on to us in part on Aeromexico, and get across the pond on Aerolineas Argentinas which is now a SkyTeam member.
If you don’t participate in these programs, then you have even more choices of who to fly and mixed-carrier routings sold by travel agencies and online sites. Just not this nonstop as often as before.
So please still come to visit! Maybe to stay!