Thursday, July 13, 2023

Bumper June traffic sees Akasa overtake SpiceJet in domestic skies

New Delhi: Eleven-month-old Akasa overtook SpiceJet in terms of domestic market share in June 2023. While Vinay Dube’s fast growing Akasa flew 6.2 lakh domestic passengers last month, SpiceJet was at 5.5 lakh. IndiGo remains the domestic market leader with a 63.2% market share, Tata Group airlines — Air India was second at 9.7%; Vistara (which is to be merged by AI next year) third at 8.1% and AirAsia India fourth at 8%. The Tata Group’s combined share was 25.8%. Akasa (4.9%) is now at the fifth spot and SpiceJet at sixth (4.4%), according to DGCA data.

Akasa currently has a fleet of 19 aircraft and the 20th one — which will make it eligible to fly abroad — will come later thos month before India’s youngest budget carriers turns one on August 7, 2023. SpiceJet promoter Ajay Singh has been trying to raise funds for months now and promised an infusion of Rs 500 crore on Tuesday while the airline requires a lot more to meet its financial obligations.

Akasa has been inducting a plane almost every fortnight since last August, a process affected by supply chain constraints. It currently has 57 Boeing 737 MAX that are yet to be delivered from two earlier orders over the next four years. Akasa Founder Vinay Dube recently said, “We are also on track to finalise another significant three-digit aircraft order and will be ready to announce it before the end of the calendar year.”

Meanwhile DGCA data shows 1.25 crore people flew within India in June 2023, up 19% from 1.05 crore in same month last year. The first six month of this calendar year (January-June) have seen 7.6 domestic passengers, up by a third or 33% from 5.7 crore in same period last year. This despite the over 50-plane-strong GoFirst suspending all flights since May 3, 2023.

13/07/2023 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India

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