Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights

Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights
Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights
Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights
Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights

Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights

Akasa Air Receives Approval to Commence International Flights. Image/Bloomberg

Mumbai-based budget carrier Akasa Air has been granted permission by the Ministry of Civil Aviation to operate international flights, according to two officials familiar with the matter. This marks a significant development for the airline, which is now gearing up for the necessary procedures to commence international operations.

Approval Granted by Civil Aviation Ministry

The approval was granted after careful examination and consultation with the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). The Ministry of Civil Aviation communicated its decision to Akasa Air in a letter, stating that the airline is eligible to apply for international scheduled air transport services. This milestone allows Akasa Air to expand its operations beyond domestic routes.

Next Steps for Akasa Air

Akasa Air will now proceed to the next phase, involving the allocation of traffic rights by the civil aviation ministry. Once this process is completed, the airline will seek further procedures and permissions from the DGCA to initiate international flights.

Record Growth for Akasa Air

Launched in August of the previous year, Akasa Air has rapidly expanded its fleet, recently adding its 20th aircraft within its first year of operation. This achievement has positioned the airline to apply for international scheduled air transport services. Previously, airlines aspiring to operate internationally were required to have five years of domestic route experience, in addition to a fleet of 20 aircraft. However, the revised civil aviation policy eliminated the requirement for five years of experience.

Vision for International Expansion

Vinay Dube, the founder and CEO of Akasa Air, shared plans to launch the airline’s first international flight by the end of 2023. The initial international destinations are expected to be within a 5-6 hour radius, encompassing regions such as the Middle East, Southeast Asia, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka. Discussions are underway with the Ministry of Civil Aviation regarding traffic rights and with airports for slot allocations to facilitate this expansion.

Challenges and Resilience

Despite its ambitious growth, Akasa Air has encountered challenges in recent months due to the resignation of approximately 40 pilots. These resignations led to flight cancellations and a reduction in the airline’s market share from 5.2% in July to 4.2% in August. Akasa Air has taken legal action against the pilots in the Bombay High Court, alleging that they failed to fulfill their contractual obligation to serve a six-month notice period.

Akasa Air’s journey from its inception to receiving approval for international operations underscores its rapid progress and resilience in the competitive aviation industry.

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