Thursday, 07 June 2007

Kingfisher (International Ops)

Yes indeed… Kingfisher have big plans… Plans to become an international carrier between the lucrative western markets to the subcontinent. According to Indian law an airline can only apply to operate internationally after a proven 5 year domestic track record and a fleet of over 20 aircraft. Kingfisher is so keen to get started as soon as their widebody orders come through that they have been considering all alternatives to begin international operations asap… They’ve contemplated starting a US based airline by the same name (such restrictions to establish an international airline don’t exist in the US) and most recently they acquired a 23% stake in their domestic counterpart Deccan airways, this gives them majority stake in Deccan and ticket fares will most probably go up to prevent further losses for Deccan… However since Deccan was established before Kingfisher this now means that they should be able to commence international operations within 6 months if all goes to plan.

Kingfisher really mean business… they’ve got 5 airbus A380 on order (with the option of 5 more)… yes, that’s the super jumbo that’ll be the largest passenger aircraft when it is released. Recently they had one flown to India to commemorate their 2nd Anniversary since the airline started. However due to the production delays and issues experienced with this new Airbus model Kingfisher can only expect to take delivery of theirs’ after 2011. They indeed to begin international operations with the A340 aircrafts they have on order which should be ready much sooner. Latest info is that Kingfisher is set to make another widebody aircraft order (most prob Airbus A340-600) at the Paris Air Show in a couple of weeks. Kingfisher intend to offer top class service building on the reputation they have set on their domestic offerings and plan to employ an entirely international flight crew sourced from the US and Eastern Europe… They became only the second airline to be a sponsor in Formula 1 when they signed a deal to sponsor the Toyota F1 team for the 2007 season (and building on this they indeed to provide live F1 coverage on their flights! )

When they do receive their new aircraft they intend to launch non-stop flights from India to the US (one probable route is Bangalore – San Francisco) as the latest aircraft are able to have much longer fuel ranges than previous generation models.