Volaris Flights from Fresno to Guadalajara begin

FRESNO, Calif.

Dozens of people packed Volaris' ticket counter three hours before Friday's early morning flight.

"Reporter: Are you excited to be on the first flight out of Fresno?

Passenger: Yeah."

The inaugural Volaris flight from Mexico arrived in Fresno with a celebratory splash provided by airport fire trucks.

The fiesta continued inside the international terminal, with a mariachi band and food and drinks from south of the border.

We caught up with Rudy Estrada from Lemoore who waited for his two friends to arrive. He says not having to go to LA or the Bay Area to pick them up is a huge relief.

"Boy it's great. I tell you what we miss them. They need them. There's a lot of people that have been stranded here really." Estrada said.

Catalina Ortiz from Newman has a cousin who is visiting America for the very first time. She agrees with Estrada when it comes to the convenience of staying in the Valley.

"It was a lot easier for us because San Francisco is about two and a half hours away. So it was just real exciting just to drive an hour. Hour and a half to Fresno and just pick them up." Catalina Ortiz said.

Passengers on the plane were given Volaris t-shirts and even the little ones got one. Many we spoke with Thursday enjoyed their flight to Fresno.

"Reporter: Nice to be home?

Luis Gamora: Yes. I'm really happy. I'm with my family now."

Volaris and Aeromexico are now here because Mexicana went bankrupt last summer. Since then -- Aviation Director Russ Widmar has helped orchestrate the arrival of the two airlines to supply the Valley's growing demand for flights to Mexico.

"These are two heavyweight international carriers. They're going toe to toe here and they can't give each other any room to breathe. So I expect low fares for quite a while." said Russ Widmar said.

Widmar says if both Volaris and Aeromexico continue to sell out their daily flights -- it will take the airport six months to make up for the money lost when Mexicana left back in August.

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