IndiGo to add more A321 Neos this year

Forum Gandhi Istanbul | Updated on March 21, 2019

IndiGo is bullish about flying to China and other international destinations. File photo   -  Bloomberg

Eyes new international destinations

IndiGo Airlines will add 20-25 more A321 Neos in the summer to cater to the heavily congested routes in the domestic sector and new international destinations.

Currently, IndiGo has only one A321 Neo, which is being used on the Delhi-Istanbul route; however, the airline has ordered a total of 125 A321 Neos with Airbus.

William Boulter, Chief Operating Officer, IndiGo Airlines, said the airline will use the new aircraft on domestic routes like Delhi and Mumbai along with international routes like Delhi-Istanbul and to China in future.

Delivery delays

Boulter was speaking to the media during the inaugural flight between Delhi and Istanbul on Wednesday. It was earlier reported that Airbus has been facing challenges to deliver aircraft due to delays from its engine supplier, Rolls Royce.

Boulter added, “We are waiting for deliveries, and Airbus is facing delays with the deliveries, I was speaking with our codeshare partner, Turkish Airlines, and they mentioned that they are facing similar delays.”

In December last year, Turkish Airlines and India’s low-cost carrier Indigo had signed a codeshare agreement. Indigo has started its first flight between Delhi and Istanbul on March 20.

International routes

“Our codeshare with Turkish Airlines is very strategic, and we hope to develop 20 codeshare destinations beyond Istanbul. We already have six in place”.

IndiGo is bullish about flying to China and other international destinations. “We are looking very seriously into other points in South-East Asia, notably the obvious ones of Vietnam and Myanmar. We also want to operate shortly to Saudi Arabia on the west side,” he said.

“Approximately, half our expansion this year will be international so international capacity will go from 15 per cent to 20 per cent for IndiGo,” he added.

Speaking about a flight to London, Boulter said, “We are still hoping to operate this year and the midpoint which has always been a case of interest. We had slots with Gatwick, but, they lapsed. However, we are looking at options with Istanbul being a candidate as well.”

(The writer is in Istanbul at the invitation of IndiGo Airlines)

Published on March 21, 2019

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