The airline industry is energy intensive, has high fixed costs and its demand is very sensitive to the economic cycle. After the industry worldwide undergoes deregulation, starting with the United States in 1978, two distinct business models develop. Traditional carriers operate hub and spoke networks, offer onboard service and engage in price discrimination, whereas low cost carriers operate point to point, charge for all services and have simple tariffs. TACA begins operations in Central America in 1931 and, by 1943, has a footprint that extends from the United States to Argentina. In 1998–2001 TACA faces increased competition and a significant market downturn. In 2004 TACA CEO Roberto Kriete launches Centroamérica Fácil to stimulate air traffic in the airline's base countries.
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