AirAsia India maiden flight on Bangalore-Goa route, airfare at Rs 990

Written by fe Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: May 30 2014, 22:26pm hrs
AirAsia TonyAirAsia India will open the bookings this evening.
AirAsia India will operate its first flight on the Bangalore to Goa route from June 12 for Rs 990, according to officials of online travel portals.

The ticket sales that kickstart on Friday evening is expected to give rise to a price war of sort which could drastically bring down fares in the sector operated by the airline.

"They have announced fares as low as Rs 990 and now other carriers will soon offer similar prices on the same sectors, said Neelu Singh, COO,,

"The advent of AirAsia is likely to compel other players, especially LCCs, to spruce up their strategies and make their fares more competitive if they have to retain market share, Singh added.

The Group CEO of Air Asia, Tony Fernandes, had on Thursday tweeted, "Very very proud to announce AirAsia India open for sale tomorrow. Wow. First flight June 12th. See you all In India on the 12th.

The airline, which received its first aircraft Airbus A320 in Chennai on March 22, plans to start its operations with two aircraft, according to a senior official of the airline.

Air Asia India CEO Mittu Chandilya had earlier told Fe that it will offer fares atleast 35% lower than the average fares of its rivals.

The road to start its operations in India had been marred by delay and litigation for the airline, which had earlier aimed at starting commercial operations by the January-March 2014.

This was delayed further to March-May period after Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) called for public objections to the launch of the airline on January 20. This was after the airline had obtained approval from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board on April 2013, which cleared the $30-million deal to launch Air Asia India. The Civil Aviation Ministry gave a no-objection certificate (NOC) to the airline during September last year.

The last leg of regulatory formalities with officials of the DGCA on board the airlines first Airbus A320, was completed on May 1.

The airline also got a breather from the Supreme Court in May when the apex court refused to pass any interim order on a plea by Bharatiya Janata Partys Subramanian Swamy seeking to restrain approvals to operationalize the AirAsia India deal.

DGCA has also granted the airline in-principle approval to import 10 Airbus A-320-200 aircraft in December last year.