Wednesday, November 02, 2016

With big airlines in, smaller cities start flying

As regional airlines are struggling to sustain their services, low cost carriers like Indigo and SpiceJet and full service carriers like Jet Airways and Air India have started to connect smaller cities in a bid to make the most of the new market. Civil aviation ministry is aggressively pushing regional connectivity across the country.

Coimbatore, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Port Blair now have better frequency at affordable fare from Chennai as low cost carriers have added more flights in the last two months. Varanasi, Vadodara, Bagdogra and Dehradun have also been linked to Delhi. Air India extended a Delhi-Chennai flight to Coimbatore recently and has plans to connect more smaller towns in the coming months.

Unused airports at Puducherry and Vellore are expected to benefit from the new trend. The ministry is also aiming to develop small airports at Salem and Thanjavur.

Though the ministry of civil aviation is encouraging regional carriers, new airlines are not able to sustain the services. Air Pegasus has run into trouble while Air Costa had to suspend services briefly a few months ago because of operational reasons.

SpiceJet in a statement said, "With regional connectivity as the macro theme, the airline has been constantly focusing on the agenda while undertaking network expansions and has most recently introduced three new flights to northeast."
02/11/16 The Times Of India

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