Hyderabad: India’s newest airline, Akasa Air has announced its arrival into Telangana with the launch of its 13th domestic destination in Hyderabad. The airline on Tuesday announced that it will operate two daily flights between Hyderabad-Goa and Hyderabad-Bengaluru, with its first flight to RGIA scheduled to land on Wednesday.
In an interview with Deccan Chronicle, Praveen Iyer, Co-Founder and Chief Commercial Officer and Belson Coutinho, Co-founder and Chief Marketing & Experience Offices, Akasa Air, open about the essence of the new airline and talk about the values it carries from destination to destination.
Why choose such a turbulent time for aviation to launch a new airline?
Belson Coutinho: There is a right or wrong time to build an enterprise and we have built it for the long term. Yes, there was turbulence in the industry at the time of the launch but now we are witnessing a return of close to 98% occupancy that we saw in the pre-covid times.
As the youngest airlines in India, what differentiates you and your competitors?
Praveen Iyer: We bring in brand new aircraft with plush look and feel with better comfort. The Akasa Café, that serves food on board has a variety of offerings that our competitors don’t offer.
In terms of being greener, our new Boeing 700-800 are low on carbon emission and they are also a lot quieter inside the cabin.
What expansion plans do you have for the future?
Praveen Iyer: We aim to broaden our fleet size to 18 aircraft by the end of March 2023 and over the next four years, the airline will add 54 additional aircraft, taking its total fleet size to 72 aircraft. We will also increase the number of destinations we cater to as and when we get permission from the respective airports.
Where do you see Hyderabad in terms of your business?
Both Belson and Praveen in one voice: We expect Hyderabad to be amongst the top 5 markets for us. Its geographical location and proximity to other cities and industrial hubs and the fourth largest airport in the country being the city will help our business expand a great deal.