Airlines will operate fewer domestic flights during the summer of 2023, as compared to the previous summer, amid high oil prices and terminal capacity constraints at airports.
Data shared by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) show the regulator has approved 22,907 weekly flights across airlines in the summer schedule of 2023, compared to 25,309 weekly flights last year, a decrease of 9.5 per cent. The number, however, is an increase of 4.4 per cent from the 21,941 weekly flights airlines were operating in the winter schedule.
Market leader IndiGo has decided to beef up capacity and will operate 11,465 flights this summer as compared to 10,085 flights in winter – a growth of around 14 per cent.
The biggest cut has come from financially stressed SpiceJet, which has got approval to operate 2,240 flights in the summer schedule, a fall of 30 per cent from the winter schedule. The airline, despite a debt-equity restructuring with lessor Carlyle Aviation, has been unable to induct fresh capacity and continues to return aircraft to the lessor due to pending dues.
Air India, which will be inducting significant fresh capacity in June, will operate 2,178 flights – 9.45 per cent higher than the ongoing winter schedule.
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