Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Akasa Air, Jet Airways 2.0 likely to launch operations in second quarter

New Delhi: Indian skies are all set to get crowded with new names, as Akasa Air and Jet Airways 2.0 are in the final stages to begin their maiden commercial flights. 

Billionaire investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala-backed Akasa Air on Monday said it is on track to launch its operations by July this year and it expects its first aircraft to be delivered by mid-June.

The airline also released photographs of its first Boeing 737 Max plane from the Boeing production facility in Portland, USA. Akasa plans to fly 18 aircraft by March-end 2023 across domestic routes, focusing on metro to tier -II/III cities.

In November 2021, the airline had signed a $9-billion deal with US aviation major Boeing for 72 Boeing 737 Max planes in two variants: 737-8 and the high-capacity 737-8-200. These aircraft will be powered by the fuel-efficient CFM LEAP B engine.

Beside Akasa, Jet Airways, which recently received its flying licence revalidated by the aviation regulator DGCA, is aiming to start commercial operations in the July-September quarter. 

On Monday, Jet made key hirings, including the appointment of Mark Turner as vice-president – in-flight product and services. He re-joins the airline after previously leading in-flight services for Jet Airways in 2008-11.

The airline has also appointed veterans such as Prabh Sharan Singh as chief digital officer, HR Jagannath as vice-president – engineering and Vishesh Khanna as vice -president – sales, distribution, and customer engagement. 

The Naresh Goyal-founded Jet Airways had stopped flying in April 2019 and was acquired by a consortium of Murari Jalan and Kalrock Capital under the bankruptcy proceeding in 2020.

Since then it has been trying to make a comeback. These airlines are entering Indian skies at a time when air traffic has seen significant improvement after bleeding for two years due to COVID-19 pandemic. Currently, domestic air traffic has reached to pre-covid level of 4 lakh/day departing passengers. 

24/05/22 New Indian Express

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