Air India Express plans to expand to more non-metro cities

Tuesday, Apr 28, 2015,21:21 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Kochi | Air India Express (AIE) today said it is looking at expanding operations to more non-metro cities in the country to tap the growing international traffic from these places.
AIE, which is the international budget arm of the state-run Air India, also said it plans to take on lease eight brand-new Boeing B737-800 NG aircraft in the current fiscal, which would help it expanding its presence pan-India.
With the induction of these new aircraft, the company aspires to gain a pan-Indian presence to tap international market opportunities from other tier II cities as well, Air India Express said in a release.
At the same time, the airline would also work to strengthen its existing operations, it said.
The carrier currently has 17-owned Boeing 737-800s in the fleet.
The Kochi-based carrier, which commenced its operations a decade ago, at present operates air services from 11 domestic airports, primarily in tier-II/III cities, to 12 international destinations spanning over the Gulf and South East Asian region.
Almost 50 per cent of its flights take off from airports across Kerala.
The airline also said that it has seen profit, in 2014-15, for the first time since its launch in 2005, adding, the passenger carriage grow by a healthy 13.8 per cent to 3.10 million while operating revenue surged by 10 per cent to about Rs 2,600 crore in the just-concluded fiscal.
AIE is eying to increase its operating revenue by around Rs 200 crore by March 31 next year, it added.
The airline has also increased free baggage allowance limit to 30 kg on its flights from the Gulf to mark 10-years of operations. The enhanced baggage allowance offer is valid till May 31, it said.