Category Archives: Aviation

IndiGo adds 3 international flights from Mumbai

Effective June 05, IndiGo will fly daily non-stop from Mumbai to both Jeddah and Abu Dhabi. Effective July 05, the airline will connect Mumbai with Dammam through daily direct flights (Subject to regulatory approvals). Additionally, IndiGo is temporarily adding approximately 20 new departures each from Mumbai and Delhi in a phased manner from April 15, 2019. This is an effort to make it easier for customers to find affordable fares during the busy season. William Boulter, Chief Commercial Officer, IndiGo said, “We are strengthening Mumbai as a key travel hub for domestic and international connectivity from India. We are pleased to announce Jeddah and Dammam as our 17th and 18th international destinations effective June 05, 2019 and July 05, 2019 respectively. Jeddah being the commercial capital and the gateway for Haj, Dammam being the growth centre in Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi being a major cultural and commercial centre in UAE, are critical markets for strengthening our presence in the Middle-East. Mumbai is the commercial hub of India and we see great potential connecting the Middle-East with this city, further bolstering the extensive cultural, business and tourism links between India and the Middle East. With the addition of these new international flights and enhanced domestic frequency, we are committed to expanding our network to meet the requirements of both business and leisure travellers. It is our constant endeavour to provide flexibility of choice to our customers as IndiGo continues to offer on-time, affordable, courteous and hassle-free flying experience consistently.”

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ATF should be brought under GST: Suresh Prabhu

Civil Aviation Minister Suresh Prabhu is of the view that Aviation turbine fuel (ATF) should be brought under the Goods and Services Tax (GST) regime to ensure a level playing field for the domestic airline industry. He says, “Each state has a different tax. Due to this, the refuelling (for airlines) cost completely changes. We feel that it should be done. I hope the GST Council takes a call on that and we are pursuing this with the council continuously. “He said input costs should be competitive for any sector and the ministry has been of the strong view that the fuel should be brought under the GST regime.” (Source: PTI)

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High air fares to weigh heavy on passenger traffic growth

Expensive air fares as a result of capacity constraint and high fuel prices are expected to further decelerate India’s passenger growth numbers, experts opined. As per the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) data, on a YoY basis, growth rate in February stood at 5.62 per cent to 1.13 crore, while it was 9.10 per cent in January and 11.03 per cent in December 2018. Even though, there has been a growth in passenger numbers on a year-on-year (YoY) basis, the traffic on a sequential level has shown a negative trend. Even data from the International Air Transport Association (IATA) showed a similar trend. The growth rate of India’s domestic air passenger volume — measured in revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs) — slowed in February to 10 per cent from a rise of 12.4 per cent in January. Industry observers blamed the downward sequential growth trend on high air fares. According to experts, since March 14, passengers had to shell out high fares as several airlines cancelled operations for a number of reasons, including grounding of Boeing 737-MAX aircraft. During this period, some sectors continued to see a rise of more than 100 per cent in case of last minute bookings. “Indian aviation has seen a capacity constraint due to multiple reasons over last couple of months. The immediate impact of this reduction noted on fares was an average of 15-20 per cent hike in price,” said Sharat Dhall, COO (B2C) of Yatra.com. “While that acted as a deterrent for people who were looking to book air tickets in short notice, however, the traffic was not seen to be affected as the fares did moderate for people booking in advance,” he …

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SpiceJet to fly Mumbai-Bangkok direct from May 17

SpiceJet has announced a direct flight connecting Mumbai to Bangkok becoming the first Indian LCC to introduce a daily flight on the Mumbai-Bangkok-Mumbai route. The flight will commence from May 17. The budget carrier also introduced six additional domestic flights on the Mumbai-Kolkata-Mumbai (third frequency), Mumbai-Chennai-Mumbai (third) and Mumbai-Varanasi-Mumbai (second) route from April 18. SpiceJet will use its Boeing 737 NG aircraft on both the international as well as domestic routes. The Thai capital is SpiceJet’s second international destination after Dubai with a direct flight from Mumbai. The airline already operates non-stop flights from Bangkok to Ahmedabad, Amritsar, Delhi and Kolkata.

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IndiGo announces six new flights with four UDAN routes from June 22

IndiGo is has announced six new routes, out of which four will be serving Ude Desh ka Aam Nagrik (UDAN) RCS scheme, starting June 22, 2019. The UDAN routes include Kolkata-Allahabad, Allahabad-Kolkata, Raipur-Allahabad, Allahabad-Raipur. On the other hand, the airline launched new flights between Kolkata, Allahabad, Raipur and Jabalpur, while developing regional hubs at Allahabad and Kolkata. The new routes will be serviced by an ATR aircraft. The new flights will boost IndiGo’s connectivity in the Tier II cities with fares starting from INR 1,999. William Boulter, Chief Commercial Officer, IndiGo said, “We are pleased to have the opportunity to be able to fly on these RCS routes and enhance connectivity amongst the Tier II cities including Kolkata, Allahabad, Raipur and Jabalpur. Launching flights on these routes will enhance our point to point connectivity, enabling customers to save both time and money. IndiGo will continue to expand its network to meet the requirements of both business and leisure travellers. It is our constant endeavour to provide more flexibility of choice to our customers as IndiGo continues to offer them on-time, affordable, courteous and hassle-free flying experience always.”

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Air Asia adds new routes- Mumbai to Kochi & Kolkata from April 15

Air Asia recently announced new routes from Mumbai to Kochi and Kolkata, and additional flights on the Mumbai-Bengaluru route, four times a day. Mumbai-Kochi route will fly six days a week except Tuesdays. Operations will start from April 15. In the wake of the recent Jet Airways crisis, Air Asia and Vistara are adding more aircraft to fill in the unused slots. The capacity shortage and Delhi airports have led to the hike in the airfare to 40 per cent.

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Air India Express to fly twice a week from Kunnur to Bahrain

Bahrain International Airport welcomed the arrival of the inaugural Air India Express flight from Kunnur, India to Bahrain, following the commencement of a new service. As the first direct route from Kunnur to Bahrain, it opens up many new opportunities for tourism and trade between the two countries. A BAC delegation led by Chief Commercial Officer, Ayman Zainal received the inaugural flight alongside Indian Ambassador to Bahrain, His Excellency Alok Kumar Sinha, Air India Express Country Manager, Saket Saran, and other officials. The airline, a subsidiary of Air India, will operate a service between Kunnur International Airport and BIA twice a week. The route from BIA includes one stopover in Kuwait. The flight from Kunnur International Airport is the fourth direct route to BIA after Kochi, Kozhikode, and Mangalore. In total, there are seven routes from BIA to India, all of which are direct. Mr Zainal said: “We hope that the introduction of this new route will further strengthen bilateral relations and serve the needs of the large expat community in the Kingdom. We look forward to working with Air India Express to offer its customers a seamless and smooth passenger experience.” He added: “With the launch of the new Passenger Terminal Building later this year, BAC expects to attract further interest from leading airlines wishing to explore the potential of adding new routes linking Bahrain to the rest of the world. In addition to giving passengers more destinations to choose from, route development enables flows of trade, investment, and tourism that will support wider economic growth in line with the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.”

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Vistara adds summer routes from Mumbai to Bengaluru, Hyderabad & Kolkata

In view of the spike in demand for air travel in the upcoming peak summer season, Vistara has announced the addition of 14 flights, for the period April 16 – July 15, 2019. Three new routes have been added for the specified duration— Mumbai – Bengaluru, Mumbai – Hyderabad, and Mumbai – Kolkata. In addition, the airline will be flying the Pune – Hyderabad route for the period April 7 – April 30, 2019. Vistara also recently added Raipur (with double daily flights to/from Delhi) and Dibrugarh (with daily flights to/from Delhi via Bagdogra) to its steadily expanding network.    

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Hahn Air adds 10 new partners in Q1

Hahn Air has closed a successful first quarter of 2019, and has already integrated ten new carriers into its global network of more than 350 air, rail and shuttle partners by the end of March of this year. The new partnerships include two new interline agreements. The flights of the Thai low-cost airline Nok Air (DD) and of Precision Air (PW) from Tanzania can now be issued on the insolvency-safe HR-169 ticket. Travel agents can find and book their flights under the airlines’ own two-letter-codes in selected GDSs even in markets where the carriers are not members of the local payment systems (BSPs). In addition, eight new carriers joined the network of H1-Air partners of the global consolidation service Hahn Air Systems. On behalf of the tour operator President Travel and Tours, four Nepalese carriers are now using the H1-Air product: Buddha Air (U4), Himalaya Airlines (H9), Shree Airlines (N9), and Yeti Airlines (YT). Moreover, AB Aviation (Y6) from the Comoros Islands, Flair Airlines (F8) from Canada, Skyway CR (LC) from Costa Rica and Germania Flug (GM) from Switzerland opted for the H1-Air solution. As a result, all eight carriers are now available under the designator H1 in all major GDSs. Over 100,000 travel agents in 190 markets can book their flights and issue them on the HR-169 ticket. Finally, four existing partners extended their cooperation with Hahn Air by entering into a Dual Partnership with the leading provider of distribution services. The two Kenyan carriers Five Forty Aviation (5H) and Fly-SAX (B5), as well as JC Cambodia Airlines (QD) from Cambodia and Air KBZ (K7) from Myanmar complemented their interline agreements with the H1-Air product. Travel agents can find …

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DGCA approves Jet Airways’ summer schedule till April 25

DGCA has approved the summer flights schedule of Jet Airways for March 31 to April 25 only, according to an official document, accessed by PTI. The summer schedule of flights of all other domestic airlines such as Vistara, IndiGo, Air India and GoAir have been approved till October 26, according to the document. As per the international practice, DGCA approves two flight schedules in a year, namely, ‘summer schedule’ effective from Sunday of the last week of March and ‘winter schedule’ effective from Sunday of the last week of October. The summer schedule begins on 31 March, 2019 for all the airlines.

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