After US, SpiceJet to begin flights to London from September 1

IANS
  • SpiceJet said that it has secured slots at London Heathrow Airport to operate flights effective September 1.
  • However, the company share price was down nearly a percent after reports surfaced that SpiceJet reportedly withdrew its promotional ticket offer a day after the announcement, as the civil aviation regulator flagged it as violating the Centre’s competitive pricing terms.
  • Yesterday to operate a flight from Amsterdam to Bengaluru and Hyderabad, SpiceJet chartered a wide-body A330neo aircraft from Portuguese airline Hi Fly from Amsterdam.
India’s largest cargo operator SpiceJet in a statement to stock-exchanges said that it has secured slots at London Heathrow Airport to operate flights effective September 1.

The company said this is presently under the bubble arrangement between India and UK and is effective up to the end of summer schedule till October 23. It further added that the same should be extended after the resumption of regular operations.

“London is one of the busiest long-haul destinations from India and this is a huge milestone for SpiceJet. Providing non-stop connectivity from India to different parts of the world, which in turn strengthens our own airport hubs, is a dream that we have long cherished and this is a small step in that direction,” said Ajay Singh, chairman and managing director, SpiceJet.

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“The company is also in advance discussion to secure slots for the winter schedule for regular operations,” it added in a statement to stock-exchanges.

However, the company share price was down nearly a percent after reports surfaced that SpiceJet reportedly withdrew its promotional ticket offer a day after the announcement, as the civil aviation regulator flagged it as a violation against the Centre’s competitive pricing terms.


This will be the first time SpiceJet will be operating a long haul flight to the UK. After Jet Airways ceased operation in 2019, Air India was the only Indian carrier to operate between India and the US— which it even continued during the lockdown through Vande Bharat Mission (VBM).
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This comes as another international route addition to SpiceJet’s portfolio after it was earlier in July designated as Indian scheduled carrier to operate on agreed routes between India and the United States.

Wide-body aircraft dilemma

SpiceJet currently has single-aisle narrow-body aircraft for its domestic operations, which it also uses to conduct international operations to the gulf countries under VBM. However, for operations to the UK and the US, it would need wide-body aircraft with bigger fuel tanks that allow the airline to operate long haul flights.

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On August 2, to operate its maiden long-haul charter flight from Amsterdam to Bengaluru and Hyderabad, SpiceJet chartered a wide-body A330neo aircraft from Portuguese airline Hi Fly from Amsterdam. The twin-aisle A330neo aircraft of Hi Fly has a configuration of 353 economy seats and 18 in business class.

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