Sunday, August 07, 2022

India's new Akasa Air commences operations, first flight starts on Mumbai-Ahmedabad route

Akasa Air, India’s newest carrier backed by billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, has finally taken off. The airline's inaugural flight between Mumbai and Ahmedabad was cleared by Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya M Scindia and MoS General Vijay Kumar Singh on Sunday.

Akasa Air's service between Mumbai and Ahmedabad will see 28 weekly flights.

Akasa started taking reservations for its inaugural commercial flights on Friday. The airline will initially operate out of Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Kochi.

Subsequently, from August 13, the airline would start flying an extra 28 weekly flights between Bengaluru and Kochi. With immediate effect, tickets are available to everyone.

Akasa’s network strategy will be to connect metro cities with smaller towns across India, Praveen Iyer, co-founder and chief commercial officer, said. The network will expand in a phased manner and connect more cities as Akasa adds two aircraft each month in the first year, he said. The carrier expects to have a fleet of 72 737 jets within five years.

The carrier’s debut comes as most rival airlines in the cutthroat Indian market are tainted with repeated non-fatal incidents caused by mid-air technical malfunctions. The aviation regulator recently grounded two Airbus SE A320 aircraft of Go First, India’s second-biggest airline, and a Boeing Co. 787 jet of Air India Ltd., the former state-run carrier that’s now under Tata Group, after they reported incidents.

"We are extremely excited to finally be able to offer up our flights for sale. We are also excited to reveal our product which promises to be unlike anything experienced in the category thus far. With Akasa employees providing warm and efficient customer service, a reliable and dependable network, and affordable fares - we look forward to serving our customers with a flying experience that I am sure they will find delightful", Vinay Dube, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Akasa Air, had said.

07/08/22 Economic Times

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