Air India Express maybe introducing just one additional route to its network during the summer 2014 schedule, but it has major growth plans for 2015, its commercial chief, Tara Naidu revealed to The HUB Daily on the sidelines of this year’s Routes Asia forum in Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia.
The introduction of the Mumbai – Kuala Lumpur via Chennai link this year could be the calm before the storm as the carrier has launched a tender to expand its fleet in 2015 and grow its network. “We are looking to lease eight additional aircraft,” confirmed Naidu. “We have already got some responses. The first one will come in February next year and over the next six months we should be getting all eight of them.”
“We are looking at launching a lot of new routes. We are in the process of evaluating a lot of different routes. We might also be increasing frequency on some of the existing routes, because that’s how low-cost carriers work, and that is the model that works best, when you have a high frequency on a route,” she added.
You can find out more in our video interview with Tara Naidu, below, in which she reveals the carrier operated with close to a 79 per cent load factor in the past financial year; is already seeing good bookings for its sole new route in summer 2014 and is happy about the yields on the link; how Dubai is one of the carrier’s strongest markets and the possible emergence of new competitors in the Indian international market.