Airfares have been on a continuous rise for some time now in the aftermath of 737 Boeing MAX groundings and amid Jet Airways flights cancellation, adding to the woes of travellers. However, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), has reportedly requested airlines to bring an “immediate and medium-term plan” to tackle the issue by adding more flights, PTI reported, citing unidentified government officials. The airlines have been requested to add new flights over and above the number approved in the summer schedule, the report added.
Meanwhile, airlines such as IndiGo and Vistara have already raised the number of flights on a temporary basis, sensing the need for additional carrying capacity. While budget carrier IndiGo recently announced that it has added 20 new domestic and three new international flights, Vistara had also said that 14 new flights have been added to cater to the peak summer season.
IndiGo’s 20 new flights are to and from Mumbai to 10 cities namely Vadodara, Patna, Hyderabad, Kochi, Nagpur, Varanasi, Bhopal, Indore, Bengaluru and Chennai. “This is an effort to make it easier for customers to find affordable fares during the busy season,” IndiGo had said in a statement.
Vistara, on the other hand, has added temporary new flights to Mumbai-Bengaluru, Mumbai-Hyderabad and Mumbai-Kolkata routes which will be operational during 16 April-15 July, it had earlier said. Also, Tata, SIA’s Vistara is going to fly Hyderabad-Pune route for the period 7 April-30 April 2019.
Flight crunch in India amid Jet Airways crisis
The airline woes in the country were exacerbated by Boeing 737 MAX tragedy and the resulting groundings of the aircraft all over the globe and then by Jet Airways’ crisis. Impending dues to the lessors have resulted in groundings of cash strapped Jet’s fleet. The airline has seen a drastic decrease in the number of the operating fleet; almost a fifth of its earlier lineup of 119 aircraft. Also, its promoter and then CEO Naresh Goyal was forced to step down from the board of chairman following the decision of SBI led consortium to take over the company’s management. The resolution plan for the debt-ridden airline is yet to come to the fore.