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India: DGCA approves 18,843 weekly flights for Summer Schedule 2021

DGCA on Tuesday officially announced that it has approved 18,843 weekly flights for Summer Schedule 2021 (28th March,2021 to 31st October,2021).

Summer Schedule 2021 approved

The current allocations by the DGCA takes into account the 80% capacity cap on airlines put in place by the Indian government. This prevents airlines from making a full recovery in the coming months. Overall, flights are down 23% compared to last summer. Nevertheless, let’s see which airline has been allocated how many weekly departures.

Indigo

Indigo comfortably leads the domestic market in India, with the airline operating 8,749 weekly flights, representing 46% of all departures this summer. This figure is less than Indigo’s current market share of a whopping 54%, more than half of the capacity available.

Indigo continues to lead the domestic market share in India. Photo: Wikipedia Commons

SpiceJet

SpiceJet’s capacity has shrinked considerably. SpiceJet has bagged a total of 2,854 weekly departures, down from 4,209 weekly flights in 2020. This means the airline has lost 13% overall capacity this summer, the sharpest drop of any airline currently in Indian domestic market. However, SpiceJet still remains the second-largest airline in the country but the gap between it and Indigo has only widened.

Vistara

Vistara has received its full schedule for the Summer season of 2021 operating 1,288 flights a week. This means that the airline will maintain its network of 28 destinations alongside the recent long-haul routes to London and Frankfurt.

Air India

Air India has also emerged strong as a winner in this allocation, with the airline getting all 80% of its slots which it operated in 2020. This means that the national carrier of India will fly 1,683 flights a week, which excludes Vande Bharat repatriation flights.

Related: Air India has choice between Privatisation or Closing Down: Minister

GoAir

GoAir will operate a total of 1,747 weekly flights this summer, down 10% compared to 2020. The carrier has been struggling financially and has recently revealed plans to become an ‘Ultra-Low-Cost-Carrier’.

Air Asia India

Air Asia India has been allocated a total of 1,243 weekly departures for the summer schedule 2021:

Regional Airlines

Startup Airline Flybig has also emerged strong with the airline flying 54 flights-a-week and will also add new destinations to its network. Star Air will have 115 departures every week, increasing from 87 and TruJet will have 344 flights-a-week. Regional subsidiary of Air India, Alliance Air has also received its full allocation and will fly 742 weekly flights with its all-ATR fleet.

Rising cases: A major concern for airlines in India

A major concern for all the airlines in India is the second wave of COVID-19. While the Indian government has said that it will not cut down domestic flights due to rising cases, passenger traffic will suffer. If the second wave continues to grow, airlines might have to cut capacity or face deeper losses this quarter.

What do you think of India’s Summer Schedule 2021? Let me know in the comments section below.

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