Full service airline Vistara’s top executive Sanjiv Kapoor today wondered whether wide-body planes for short haul services can work amid high costs, a day after rival Jet Airways announced that such aircraft would be deployed in select domestic routes.
In an apparent dig at Jet Airways against the backdrop of stiff competition among airlines, Kapoor also said the yields are low and fuel costs are high in the country.
“Short-haul wide-body flights are a challenge due to high trip costs. With low yields and high fuel costs in India, can it work here…?,” Kapoor, who is Vistara’s Chief Strategy and Commercial Officer, said in a tweet.
Vistara, a joint venture between Tatas and Singapore Airlines, currently operates only narrow-body Airbus A320 Jet Airways has said it would nearly double the capacity on Mumbai and Kolkata routes with the introduction of wide-body Airbus A330 aircraft from October 30.
At present, the Mumbai-based airline flies a Boeing 737, which has around 160 seats. Jet Airways Airbus 330-300s seat capacity stands at 293, with 34 seats in business class and 259 in economy.
At present Jet Airways has four A330s in its fleet.
According to the airline, the introduction of wide-body aircraft services on the busiest domestic routes would significantly enhance both connectivity and capacity.