Concerned over its on-time performance (OTP), government has asked Air India to achieve higher efficiency in its operations and set a target of 90 per cent OTP for this month.
The state-owned carrier had delivered an OTP of 82.4 per cent in September, and stood just one-notch above the start-up regional carrier Air Paegasus, among the nine domestic airlines, in the ranking.
The target was set during a recent review meeting of the airline, which was chaired by Civil Aviation Ashok Gajapathi Raju, sources said.
“Though Air India has improved its OTP quite considerably in the last few months, Ministry feels that it needs to boost this further, more so when most of the other domestic carriers are clocking over 85 per cent,” sources said.
According to the DGCA OTP data for September, the two other full service carriers –Jet Airways and Vistara — reported 87.4 and 94.2 per cent OTP respectively during the month.
Budget airlines IndiGo and SpiceJet flights took and landed on 92.4 per cent and 95.1 per cent on the scheduled time respectively.
The Aviation Ministry has asked Air India to make sure that at least 90 per cent of its flights, if not more, depart and land on time across airports in the current month, they said.
Pointing out that Air India is a network carrier and not a point-to-point carrier, sources said that Air India has done better in terms of OTP in the last month compared to previous month.
“Air India’s OTP is certainly better in October as against September. However, considering that Air India is a network carrier in the sense that it has more connecting flight than direct flights unlike some point-to-point carriers (who fly direct more), aircraft turnaround time also go up, which also impact OTP significantly,” sources said.
Significantly, airline is also laggard in average OTP from four metros –Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.
As against an average 91.5 per cent OTP delivered by IndiGo and 89 per cent by Jet Airways from these four airports in September, Air India’s average OTP stood only at 81.9 per cent during the period.