Vistara To Launch International Operations In August
Tata-Singapore Airlines-run Vistara has announced its foray into international skies from next month with flights to Singapore from New Delhi and Mumbai.
Vistara will operate two daily flights to Singapore, one each from New Delhi and Mumbai, from Aug. 6 and 7 respectively, the airline said. It will deploy Boeing 737-800 NG planes offering business and economy class.
The New Delhi-based Vistara started operations in January 2015 as a full-service domestic airline and was eligible for overseas operations in April 2018 after it acquired its 20th plane. But its permission for international operations came only this March.
Vistara, 51 percent owned by the Tatas and rest by Singapore Airlines, currently operates over 1,200 weekly flights connecting 24 cities with a fleet of 29 planes, comprising both Airbus A320s as well as Boeing 737s.
While Singapore Airline operates over 50 weekly flights to the country connecting most of the metros from Singapore, its subsidiaries Scoot and SilkAir also fly to various domestic destinations from Singapore.
"We are excited to start our first international destination to with Singapore as we see the city as a very important market, given the opportunities it presents for corporate, business as well as leisure travel," said Leslie Thng, Chief Executive Officer of Vistara.
The airline also plans to expand its footprint to other overseas markets going forward, he added. Bookings for Singapore are "being opened progressively" on Vistara website, mobile apps and through travel agencies, said the airline.
Last year, Vistara had placed orders 50 aircraft—Airbus A320 Neos and A321 Neos. These planes will be for domestic as well as short and medium-haul international operations, after deliveries from 2019 through 2023.
Further, the carrier has also bought six Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners scheduled for deliveries in 2020-21. These would operate long-haul international operations.
Grounding of Jet Airways (India) Ltd. in April resulted in a significant capacity reduction in the domestic and international markets, which is now being scaled up by granting local and overseas slots of the now-defunct carrier to other domestic airlines.
The new services could also ease pressure on international airfares from the country, which jumped over 30 percent after the collapse of Jet. In the past couple of years, India has been the third largest source market for Singapore, according to Singapore Tourism Board.
"We are delighted that Vistara is launching its international operations to Singapore from New Delhi and Mumbai. These two cities are among the key visitorship contributors from India for leisure, business travel and meetings, incentives, conventions and exhibitions and cruise travelers to Singapore. The new flights will help bring in more visitors to Singapore," said GB Srithar, regional director for India, Middle East and South Asia at Singapore Tourism
After the launch of the services to Singapore, Vistara will expand its footprint to other international markets going forward, the release said.