Indigo fly high

And losing out in the bargain are rivals such as Air India Express and Jet Airways, the latter reducing seat-capacity in flights to the Gulf, while the Gurgaon-based airline is doing just the reverse. IndiGo has increased its seat-capacity to the Gulf by 40% in the past one year. It now offers 26,460 weekly seats from India to Dubai, Doha, Sharjah and Muscat, the airline said.

Indigo has started flights connecting Chennai and Kozhikode with Muscat, Kozhikode and Thiruvananthapuram with Sharjah, and Mumbai and Delhi with Doha. Regulator Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has allowed Indigo to further increase seats, which can go up to 31,500 a week. That would mean a 66% jump in one year.

By contrast, Jet Airways has decreased its weekly capacity to the Middle-East by 14% to 51,100 seats between the last winter schedule and the ongoing summer schedule, said a source in the know. In the last few months, Jet has stopped flights connecting Bengaluru, Ahmedabad and Goa to Abu Dhabi. It has also withdrawn services connecting Mangalore and Kozhikode to Sharjah, and Thiruvananthapuram with Dubai, sources said.

According to Indian aviation norms, the financial year is divided into two schedules of seven and five months. At the start of each schedule, airlines revise their flight operations — services, slsots, seat capacity — after approval from the DGCA. For its part, Jet reiterated that its dominant status would be strengthened by its partnership with Etihad.

"Jet Airways remains committed to the Gulf region. Together with our strategic partner Etihad Airways, we are the dominant carrier, both in terms of market and capacity share. Our growth plans for the Gulf region remain unchanged. We have consistently increased capacity into selected Gulf routes by 5-6% per annum over the past years, and will continue to do so in this new financial year."

India's aviation relations with the Gulf have been more dynamic than with any other region or country in the world. Indian carriers have historically milked the labour traffic and the SME traffic flying to middle-eastern markets, while premium Gulf carriers have flown rich Indian passengers to the rest of the world. To be sure, Jet still offers almost double the capacity of IndiGo on the region.

The gap widens further when Jet's services are clubbed with those of its strategic partner Etihad, which has the right to offer 51,000 weekly seats to India. Etihad owns 24% of Jet.

Yet, IndiGo is expanding much faster than others. It operates flights to just four Gulf sectors compared to Jet's 10. The airline already offers more capacity than its Indian peers in Dubai and Muscat.

In these two sectors, it has long toppled Air India Express, the regionalinternational subsidiary of national carrier Air India, and primarily a Gulf flyer. "Moreover, IndiGo now offers 2,520 seats to Doha.

Top Comment

Still going to Gulf courage in Indians but these countries are now fighting for their survivals due to decline in crude prices.

RaMa Rajya

It has DGCA's approval for 7,560. If it expands to its fully approved capacity to the city, it will beat Air India Express (2,604) and be neckto-neck with Jet Airways (7,672)," said Habibullah Ubaidullah, an independent aviation researcher and consultant. Also, as part of its Gulf expansion, IndiGo has focused on traffic from southern India.

"DGCA figures showed the airline has more than doubled its weekly capacity between south India and the Gulf in the last one year to 13,820 seats," said Ubaidullah. That can be expanded to 18,860. Jet offers 15,288 seats, he added.




Trending News

Google's firing of anti-diversity memo author was legal: US Labour board

Infibeam tweaks business to keep up with 4G wave

Samsung India sets sales goal of over $10 billion this year

Facebook face big challenge to prevent future US election meddling

Intel hit with 32 lawsuits over security flaws

Apple promises fix for serious Telugu character bug

GrabOnRent launches operations in Mumbai and Gurgaon

Crypto fall fails to drown initial coin offerings

Kalpnik uses AR & VR to help people 'go' to any place of worship

SpaceX is launching its broadband satellites into orbit this weekend

Unilever threatens to cut back online ads over 'toxic' content

Google hires former Samsung Mobile CTO to coordinate Internet of Things projects

Go-Jek plans India foray in second half of 2018

Pivoting away from Cube brought us to the right route: PayU's Jitendra Gupta

Ola parent to invest Rs 400 crore to boost Foodpanda India logistics & tech

Alibaba plans tighter integration of Paytm Mall with BigBasket & XpressBees

MakeMyTrip posts wider loss in Q3, may revisit OYO strategy

Google fined Rs 135.86 crore by CCI for 'search bias'

RBI suggests tax sops, self-regulation to build fintech space

Swiggy hires new CEO for its Access Service, gets new CFO

Logistics company Delhivery registers 44% increase in FY17 revenues

WeWork to acquire one of the oldest social networks, Meetup

Toyota, Suzuki to produce electric vehicles for India market by 2020

Qualcomm rejects Broadcom's $103 billion offer

Fashion e-tailer Voonik asks staff to forgo 3 months' salary

EasyRewardz gets $2 million Series-A funding

'Anemic' iPhone 8 demand drags Apple shares lower

Lending platform Lenden Club gets Rs 3.5cr in Equity Investment

On festive sales, Flipkart says 65% clients from Tier-II cities