Category Archives: Aviation

IndiGo introduces ‘Flexible Fare’ and ‘Lite Fare’

IndiGo has launched ‘Flexible Fare’ that allows travelers to change to another flight at no extra charge. With the regular fare, this change costs Rs 2250 per person per sector. Additionally, Flexible Fare offers them complimentary seat selection. IndiGo’s Super Lightweight Champion gives corporate travellers, who frequently make daily round trips with no check-in baggage, significantly lower fares that can be selected on bookings made at least 15 days before the date of travel. In case the traveller does land up having check-in baggage of up to 15 kgs, they can pay a fee of Rs 200 at the airport. Speaking about this initiative, Mr. Aditya Ghosh, President, IndiGo said, “These are exciting times for the flyers in India. It is our constant endeavour to empower our consumers to make informed choices. These new fares are a testament to our promise to always provide our flyers with low fares. We complete ten years of operation this year and the reason we have grown is that we have always been ahead of the curve. Initiatives such as this go a long way in strengthening our consumers’ trust in us and we hope we can continue to provide them with a hassle-free flying experience.”

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MoCA signs MoU with Maharashtra and AAI on Regional Connectivity

The Union Ministry of Civil Aviation, Maharashtra Government, and Airports Authority of India have signed a tri-partite Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), kicking off the collaborative process for the successful launch of the Regional Connectivity Scheme. The MoU was signed in Mumbai in the presence of Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju, and Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. With this MoU, the State Government of Maharashtra has formally agreed to provide the concessions required from the State Governments in the Regional Connectivity Scheme, thereby becoming the first state in the country to do so. The agreement was signed by Chairman, Airports Authority of India, Principal Secretary Civil Aviation (Maharashtra) and Joint Secretary (Ministry of Civil Aviation). Earlier during the day, Raju and Fadnavis discussed various other aviation related issues in the State of Maharashtra at length. The meeting was attended by R. N. Choubey, Secretary, Ministry of Civil Aviation, Swadheen Kshatriya, Chief Secretary of the State and other officials. Amongst others, the subject of rehabilitation of slums (that have come up right next to the Mumbai International Airport) was deliberated upon in details.  Early operationlisation of several available airports and airstrips in the State (like Shirdi, Kolhapur, Nasik, Sholapur etc) also figured prominently in the discussions. Later, Raju undertook an aerial survey of the proposed airport site for Navi Mumbai and took a status briefing from the officers concerned. He laid emphasis on timely completion of the project and conveyed that this can be achieved only if timelines for all sub-activities are adhered to. Raju conveyed that he will be undertaking similar visits to several other states across the country to promote the Regional Connectivity Scheme and discuss other related issues …

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Cathay, Dragonair up baggage allowance by 10kg

Cathay Pacific Airways and its subsidiary Dragonair have revised their baggage policies and will now be offering customers an additional 10kg of check-in baggage. The new policy will be valid starting September 15, 2016, and will be available to all passengers, whether they are travelling economy, business or first class. But, the revised checked baggage policy will have a limitation on pieces of baggage. Economy, premium economy and business class passengers will be able to check-in up to two pieces of luggage, while those in first class will be entitled to a maximum of three bags. On the other hand, Marco Polo Club silver, gold and diamond tier members would get an extra 10kg, 15kg and 20kg, respectively. Meanwhile, Dragonair has also revealed that it will increase its carry-on baggage allowance to match that of Cathay Pacific. From a set 5kg for all classes, the new allowance will grant economy and premium economy passengers a new limit of 7kg, while business and first passengers will receive 10kg and 15kg respectively.

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Delhi-Leh route in demand in June

A 1.92 per cent seats were sold on the Delhi-Leh route on Jet Airways earning a revenue share of 6.18 per cent in the highest fare bucket on select 20 sectors, as per data from the Ministry of Civil Aviation. Passengers carried by domestic airlines during Jan-Jul 2016 were 560.87 lakhs as against 455.95 lakhs during the corresponding period of previous year thereby registering a growth of 23.01 per cent. In July, SpiceJet recorded the highest passenger load factor (PLF) with 92 per cent, followed by GoAir with 90.3 per cent and AirAsia with 85.7 per cent.

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SpiceJet’s Silchar, Gorakhpur and Aizawl flights from Oct 4

Starting  October 4, SpiceJet to add new markets like Silchar, Gorakhpur and Aizawl and will operate new flights on routes like Kolkata-Silchar-Guwahati; Kolkata-Aizawl-Guwahati and Kolkata-Gorakhpur-Delhi. Kolkata-Visakhapatnam-Kolkata flights will also start from November 1. To celebrate the launch of the new routes, SpiceJet is offering tickets at an all inclusive introductory fares of – Rs. 2127 for the Kolkaka-Aizawl and Rs. 1899 for the Aizawl-Guwahati sectors; Rs. 3699 for the Kolkata-Silchar and Rs. 4188 for Silchar-Guwahati sectors; Rs. 3210 for the Kolkata-Gorakhpur and Rs. 3335 for Gorakhpur-Delhi sectors. The new schedule will also include additional frequencies with a direct flight on its existing routes of Kolkata-Bagdogra and Kolkata-Guwahati. Sarbananda Sonowal, Chief Minister, Assam thanked SpiceJet for enhancing its air frequency to Assam and other North Eastern States by starting new daily flight sorties connecting North East with other parts of the country. Shilpa Bhatia, Sr. VP, Commercial, SpiceJet, said, “Enhancing the country’s regional connectivity has always been a prime focus for SpiceJet. And with the new aviation policy in place, there is an added encouragement to enter the underserved markets.” SpiceJet intends to add the untapped markets in its domestic network and thereby, enhance regional connectivity. SpiceJet will deploy its Q400 fleet for the newly devised schedule.

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SpiceJet records highest passenger load factor at 92%

SpiceJet continues to record highest passenger load factor (PLF) among Indian carriers with 92 per cent for the month of July 2016, according to statistics released by Ministry of Civil Aviation. SpiceJet has achieved above 90 per cent PLF for 15 successive months. The airline’s On-time Performance (OTP) for the month of July 2016 was recorded at 79.2 per cent, second only to Vistara with 80.30 per cent. OTP has been computed for its operations across the four metro airports of Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai. SpiceJet operated 298 daily flights and carried 9.94 lakh passengers during the month thereby registering a market share of 11.7 per cent. Flight cancellations have also declined steadily over the past few months for the airline, with the cancellation rate for July 2016 being just 0.28 per cent. The total passengers carried by domestic airlines during Jan-Jul 2016 were 560.87 lakhs as against 455.95 lakhs during the corresponding period of previous year thereby registering a growth of 23.01 per cent.

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Vistara signs Deepika Padukone as brand ambassador

Vistara has launched its new multimedia brand campaign along with its first TV commercial that features actor Deepika Padukone. The campaign delivers on the brand  promise of “Fly the new feeling” through the eyes of the airline’s new brand ambassador. Through this campaign, Vistara wishes to reach out to its core audience of corporate and frequent flyers who are willing to pay a premium for the unique offerings provided by the full service airline. Phee Teik Yeoh, CEO, Vistara, said, “We believe the journey should be as enjoyable as the destination. Our new brand campaign with Deepika Padukone highlights the unique feeling of flying Vistara. Through this campaign, she has brought to life the special spark of happiness that people feel when they fly with Vistara, the airline that is proud to carry the remarkable heritage of Tata group.” Within 19 months, Vistara has expanded its network from its hub in New Delhi and now serves 17 destinations across the country with 11 Airbus A320 aircraft flying 475 flights a week. By end of this year, Vistara’s fleet will grow to 13 Airbus A320 aircraft and it will fly over 500 flights a week to 18 destinations.

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AirAsia to connect Bengaluru with Hyderabad, Guwahati & Goa

AirAsia will connect Bengaluru with Hyderabad and Goa from September 22. The airline would also operate flights between Bengaluru and Guwahati with daily service. This was announced at the company’s press conference where AirAsia disclosed its plans of expansion of its fleet along with starting new routes in India. As part of the proposed plans, it will induct 20 Airbus A320 aircraft to its India operation. “We want to expand our presence in India as a low cost player. We have put in very careful consideration about where we fly. It must be commercially viable at the end of the day. It is a very young market and will take time to stabilise,” says Amar Abrol, Chief Executive Officer, AirAsia India. The company at present has a market share of 2.2 per cent in the domestic business with an average load factor of 86 per cent. “AirAsia has ordered for 100 A320neo. As and when they are added to our fleet we expect those will be added to India operations also,” adds Abrol. He also pointed out that as of now the company is operating a single fleet but is also constantly evaluating other types of aircrafts. “It again depends on the demands in the areas where ATR can fly. There are no immediate plans,” he says. (Source: The Hindu)

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Air India launches Ahmedabad-Newark via London flight

Air India commenced the first ever flight between Ahmedabad and Newark via London. The Flight AI 171 took off from Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport. The flight is receiving immense response from the passengers and not only inaugural flight but all bookings till September 16 are sold out. The first passenger to check in was handed the boarding pass by Chief Guest, Bhupendrasinh Chudasama, Hon’ble Minister, Revenue, Education (Primary, Secondary and Adult), Higher and Technical Education, Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs, Govt of Gujarat. The B787 flight to Newark will be the first commercial operation of the aircraft to the US from India. It will meet a long standing need and demand of more than 6 lakh Indians in Ahmedabad and expatriates in Newark and neighboring cities as well as off locals visiting the Indian sub-continent, who have been looking for seamless connections for work and leisure travel to Newark and London. AI-171 will operate three days a week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport. It will take off from Ahmedabad at 05:00 hrs and reach London at 10:15 hrs, depart from London at 12:30 hrs and arrive at Newark at 15:00 hrs. The return flight AI172 will leave Newark at 22:30 hrs and reach London at 10:15 hrs next day, leave London at 12:30 hrs and land at Ahmedabad at 02:00 hrs. Speaking on the occasion, Ashwani Lohani, Chairman & Managing Director, said, ‘’Air India is happy to start this new flight on August 15, 2016. It is a dream fulfilled for the people of Ahmedabad on India’s 70th Independence day. This is the third international flight introduced by Air India and we shall be …

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Mumbai-Belgium on Brussels Airlines by March 2017

Brussels Airlines will commence flights between Mumbai and Belgium from March 2017. The Indian metropolis will be connected to Brussels Airport five times a week. Since last March, Belgium and India are no longer connected and Brussels Airlines is to change this as from March 2017. In collaboration with Star Alliance partner Air India, Brussels Airlines passengers can connect seamlessly on domestic flights to other Indian cities and regions. The Mumbai-Brussels flight schedule will allow connections to European, African and American destinations on the Brussels Airlines network. To operate the Mumbai route, Brussels Airlines expands its fleet with a tenth Airbus A330, with a Business Class and an Economy Class and the recently introduced Economy Privilege. Lars Redeligx, Chief Commercial Officer, Brussels Airlines, says, “The demand for direct flights for passengers as well as for cargo is high. With more than 50,000 passengers per year, Mumbai is the third most important intercontinental destination from Belgium. Furthermore, with this new route we can offer our guests smooth connections between Mumbai and the rest of Europe via Brussels.” Source: Aviation Tribune

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