India's largest airline by domestic market share, IndiGo, which last winter had 9,030 weekly departures, will now have 10,310 weekly flights between October 27 and March 28. Meanwhile, there will be 2,254 weekly departures of Air India flights under the winter schedule for 2019, up 17.6% from the corresponding period a year ago.
Vistara and SpiceJet have been the biggest gainers in terms of airline slot re-distributions post the grounding of Jet Airways. Weekly domestic departures in the winter schedule of 2019 are set to grow by a tepid 1.2%, compared with the corresponding period last year. Weekly domestic departures for Vistara during the winter schedule for 2019 would rise 64% to 1,376 from 838 a year ago, data sourced from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) showed. SpiceJet’s weekly departures during the winter schedule will go up 46% to 4316, from 2957 a year ago.
Flights are divided into two scheduling seasons. The summer schedule runs from last Sunday of March until the last Saturday of October, the remainder comes under the winter schedule. India’s largest airline by domestic market share, IndiGo, which last winter had 9,030 weekly departures, will now have 10,310 weekly flights between October 27 and March 28. Meanwhile, there will be 2,254 weekly departures of Air India flights under the winter schedule for 2019, up 17.6% from the corresponding period a year ago.
Even with Jet’s grounding, there are 23,403 departures per week that have been scheduled covering 103 airports, a DGCA note stated. The schedule will add more flights with the expected acquisition of aircraft by domestic carriers.
“Prompt steps by the government has filled the void created by Jet Airways and has helped to achieve a growth of 1.2% compared to winter schedule 2018,” the note stated. However, among the airlines which hold 99.5% of the domestic market share, weekly departures will reduce to 20,553 in 2019, compared with 21,348 weekly flights a year ago.
Last year, during the winter schedule, Jet Airways was flying nearly 3,600 flights weekly. After the grounding of the airline on 17 April, Jet’s slots were reallocated to other domestic carriers and will continue to be with them till March. A senior DGCA official said the Synergy Group, the only entity interested in the beleaguered airline, ‘seemed bullish during a meeting with government officials last month, but have not been in touch since’. FE had earlier reported that Jet’s resolution has been delayed till December.
“With this delay, there is little chance of Jet being accommodated into the winter schedule for 2019. These discussions will only happen once they have a revival plan in place,” the official told FE.