Jet Airways suspending operations created a big void in the Indian aviation market. On the domestic front, Ministry of Civil Aviation has temporarily distributed some of Jet Airways flights to other carriers, and they have quickly launched a slew of new temporary flights especially out of Mumbai and Delhi.
- Vistara and AirAsia India added flights from Mumbai
- SpiceJet added flights from Mumbai
- 12 new SpiceJet flights from Mumbai and Delhi
- 15 additional new SpiceJet flights from Mumbai and Delhi
- IndiGo launched 11 new flights from Mumbai Terminal 2
- Massive expansion by IndiGo from Mumbai and Delhi
- GoAir domestic expansion out of Mumbai and Delhi Terminal 2
On the international front, both SpiceJet and IndiGo have added quite a few flights, especially to Saudi Arabia, taking advantage of the recent increase in bilateral rights.
Air India, on the other hand, was a little late to the party. They announced a single new flight on Mumbai-Colombo route but postponed it to July 2019, in light of the terror attacks in Sri Lanka. It is reported that Air India received the lion’s share of Jet Airways’ international rights.
Air India launched two additional daily flights to Dubai from Mumbai and Delhi using 787-8. They have announced inaugural fares of INR 7777 one way on the new routes. But actually, tickets are available at a cheaper rate of INR 7125 all-inclusive one-way economy ticket on Mumbai-Dubai route.
Air India has now announced a slew of new temporary domestic routes. While in the case of other carriers, the majority of the temporary expansion was from Mumbai Terminal 2 followed by Delhi, Air India has opted for development majorly from Chennai and Delhi instead.
Air India has launched the following flights temporarily from June 5, 2019, to July 31, 2019.
Chennai – Bengaluru
AI591 MAA0700 – 0800BLR 321 D
AI592 BLR0835 – 0935MAA 321 D
Chennai – Ahmedabad
AI593 MAA1020 – 1250AMD 321 x7
AI594 AMD1340 – 1605MAA 321 x7
Chennai – Varanasi
AI595 MAA1650 – 1905VNS 321 x135
AI596 VNS1935 – 2135MAA 321 x135
Chennai – Kolkata
AI597 MAA1650 – 1925CCU 321 x246
AI598 CCU2000 – 2245MAA 321 x246
Delhi – Bhopal
AI481 DEL0840 – 1015BHO 320 x6
AI482 BHO1440 – 1600DEL 320 x6
Bhopal – Pune
AI481 BHO1045 – 1205PNQ 320 x6
AI482 PNQ1235 – 1400BHO 320 x6
Delhi – Raipur
AI483 DEL1645 – 1820RPR 320 D
AI484 RPR1850 – 2025DEL 320 D
Delhi – Amritsar
AI479 DEL2115 – 2220ATQ 320 D
AI480 ATQ2250 – 2340DEL 320 D
Delhi – Bengaluru
AI801 DEL1925 – 2155BLR 321 x14
AI802 BLR2300 – 0130(+1 day)DEL 321 x14
Delhi – Vadodara
AI823 DEL0445 – 0620BDQ 321 D
AI824 BDQ0650 – 0820DEL 321 D
Mumbai – Vishakhapatnam
AI652 BOM1910 – 2050VTZ 321 x67
AI653 VTZ2130 – 2340BOM 321 x67
With this, Air India will offer same day return flights on Delhi-Vadodara and Delhi-Raipur. Bhopal-Pune and Mumbai-Vishakhapatnam are monopoly sectors for Air India. While Air India already offers a nonstop flight on Vishakhapatnam-Mumbai route, the onwards journey was via Raipur.
Ahmedabad – Chennai sector used to have 3x daily SpiceJet flights apart from others. But since the groundings of 737 MAX and the consequent focus on adding temporary flights using Jet Airways 737s and slots, the sector is now seeing only 1x daily flight, that too delayed almost every day. Air India is taking advantage of this situation by adding 6x weekly flights taking the total to 8x weekly flights on this sector.
Apart from these routes, Air India will also be adding a daily new temporary frequency on the Delhi-Mumbai sector using a 747-400. Also, Air India will up gauge one of their frequencies on the Delhi – Kolkata route for June to a 747-400.
Air India has around 23 grounded aircraft in its fleet. Some of these aircraft will be back in the air soon, and two of these will be deployed on these temporary routes. The last three routes might come from increasing aircraft utilisation of current aircraft.
Does the expansion of flights help you in any way?