Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Spreading wings: Vistara to start flights to Phuket, Colombo

Full-service carrier Vistara, a joint venture between Singapore Airlines and the Tata Group, is set to fly on international routes from October. Sources told FE that the airline’s international flights will be from New Delhi to Colombo in Sri Lanka and Phuket, an island off Thailand’s west coast.

Under the new policy, an airline needs to have 20 aircraft for domestic operations to be eligible to fly overseas. Vistara, which began operations in January 2015, got its 20th aircraft in April and now has a 22-aircraft fleet so it can begin services to two overseas destinations.

Sources said Vistara wanted to fly to Dubai but the quota under the India-Dubai bilateral is full. The quota can be hiked under a new policy, but since Indian carriers are negotiating for better slots at Dubai airport the entire matter is stuck.

According to travel trade experts, launching overseas flights in October makes sense for the airline as it is a good period for travel given that it is the festival period and is a small vacation time.
29/08/18 Manisha Singhal/Financial Express