AirAsia may launch flights to Bangalore, Kolkata, Coimbatore, Kochi, Nagpur and Bhubaneshwar from its Chennai base, an aviation website has said. The Malaysian-based low-cost airline plans to start its India operations by the end of this year. The airline's group CEO Tony Fernandes has said the airline will link tier II and tier III cities from Chennai with 3-4 Airbus A320s in its initial launch phase. Fernandes also ruled out operations to Delhi and Mumbai because of high aeronautical tariffs.
Airline Network and News Analysis, a website which tracks route planning and network development news has evaluated AirAsia's potential network in India. AirAsia did not respond to an email query on the issue. However, an official involved in the launch of the service in India said all these routes are possible. "It is too early to say which routes AirAsia will fly and which will be the inaugural service,'' the official said.
The website's predictions are based on the potential passenger market size, distance from Chennai and competition.
14/03/13 Aneesh Phadnis/Business Standard