Vistara looks to lessors to fill long-haul gap amid 787 delays -Breaking
NEW DELHI, (Reuters) – Indian full-service airline Vistara has been in discussions with lessors regarding long-haul aircraft to fill the gap created by Boeing (NYSE:) 787 delivery delays. Chief executive Vinod Kannan stated that.
Vistara (OTC: Singapore Airlines) and India’s Tata Group are waiting for four Boeing 787-series aircraft. But, due to quality-control issues, global deliveries of the planes have been stopped since May 2021.
Vistara has been talking with lessors to rent 787s in order to provide short-term substitute capacity, Kannan stated in an interview with Reuters.
According to him, “There’s enough supply (of aircraftliners) on the market” because some areas of the globe still have not seen flying return to them. He also said that they are yet to decide whether or not to rent an aircraft.
Kannan claimed that right now, the market was far too volatile for new aircraft orders. Vistara may, however, consider purchasing Airbus A350s in the future, he stated.
Vistara owns about 50 aircraft. These include two Boeing 787-9s, which were received prior to the suspension of delivery. The rest are a mix Airbus and Boeing narrowbody aircraftliners. By 2023, it plans on adding 20 aircraft to its fleet. Most of these will be A320s that can be used both domestically as well as for international travel.
Vistara has made it a top priority to expand its reach globally. It started in 2015 but is yet to turn a profit. IndiGo is the dominant low-cost carrier in India’s domestic marketplace. Flying internationally offers better pricing.
Kannan claimed that the airline saw a decrease in losses last year and that there had been a slight improvement up until February when fuel costs spiked. He said that while demand is increasing and airline fares are rising, higher fuel prices and the impact of the rupee depreciating will make it difficult for them to compensate.
Vistara is 25% more efficient than its domestic operations. It can reach about twelve foreign capitals, including London, Paris, and Frankfurt. Kannan stated that the company plans to increase this number to 35% in the next two-years and explore direct flights to the United States and South Korea.
The availability of aircraft is crucial for long haul travel. He said that now is the right time to capitalize, particularly with India’s opening of international travel.
Tata acquired Vistara’s competitor Air India this year. Kannan stated that the airlines were exploring ways to cooperate, without breaking competition rules.
Vistara started looking into international expansion in the pre-pandemic period, but stopped when air travel came to an abrupt halt in 2020. The high cost of fuel and Russia’s invasion into Ukraine have forced Vistara to reconsider its plans.
During the pandemic, charter flights were operated by the airline to places like Moscow and Hong Kong. Kannan stated that Hong Kong has been closed to tourists and Moscow is out of the question.
“With gasoline prices where they are,” he stated. But we also know the importance of long-haul routes, not just in America.