Akasa Air is set to commence its flight operations for the first time. The airline’s Mumbai-Ahmedabad flight will take off at 10:05 am tomorrow, August 7 and will be inaugurated by the Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia.
Despite the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war and jet fuel prices soaring, the Rakesh Jhunjhunwala-backed airline is confident that they would be a strong contender in India’s crowded domestic aviation market. Jhunjhunwala is also known as ‘India’s Warren Buffet’, a sobriquet he earned because of the fortune he made on the stock market.
Akasa Air have chosen Boeing, the American airplane-maker and have opted for the newest, Boeing 737-Max aircraft.
With the recent Spicejet safety fiasco and the subsequent cutting down of 50 percent of its flights by the aviation regulator seems to be the perfect opportunity for Akasa to capture some market share. According to Directorate General of Civil Aviation statistics, Indigo in May had 57 percent share of the domestic aviation market and SpiceJet was at 9.5 percent.
India is a very price-sensitive market and Akasa Air’s seasoned co-founder Aditya Ghosh knows that. He was previously with Indigo Airlines for 10 years as president.
However, history has shown that the aviation market has made the mighty bite the dust, with the likes of Vijay Mallya now a fugitive on the run and Naresh Goyal also under the radar of investigating agencies.
Jhunjhunwala on his part and in his interviews has maintained that he is prepared for failure, knowing well how capital-intensive the aviation sector is.
Back to the launch, aviation analysts think that this new entrant might be good news for passengers. Ticket prices might be competitive after being on the higher-side post pandemic and choices will increase.
The carrier had on July 7 received its air operator certificate (AOC) from DGCA.
Akasa Air also plans to launch its international service in the second half of the calendar year 2023.