Domestic flight operations in India have grown over the last few months. According to Remi Maillard, Airbus President and Managing Director India and South Asia, the Indian airlines are now operating up to 60% of their pre-COVID capacity, which is better than most of the world. While indicating India is recovering very well, he said that the country's aviation sector is ‘still in the eye of the storm’. According to a PTI report, Maillard noted that Airbus is observing an increased leisure travel demand from India — more details on the story ahead.
There is Desire in People to Travel Again
Maillard said that the desire to fly and travel is coming back inside people. He mentioned that business travellers are returning at a good rate since to conduct operations and meet stakeholders, air travel is necessary.
In the mid-term, the aviation sector of India has noticed an upswing. But the problems haven’t ended for the airlines or the aircraft manufacturers. COVID-19 is still a potential threat with a majority of the population far from the coronavirus vaccine's access.
Maillard said that international traffic is still very weak in India. He further said that it is difficult for anyone to predict how and when it will recover. The scheduled international flights are suspended until February 28, 2021.
But the government has been operating special flights under the air bubble agreement with multiple nations. Maillard said that Indian airlines have a good opportunity to increase their market share in the international flights' segment.
Until now, the Indian airlines only operated 34% of the international flights meaning two-third of the market was captured by international airlines. Indian airlines such as Vistara, IndiGo, and SpiceJet have the capacity to capture more ground in the international market share, and they should utilise this opportunity according to Maillard.
Maillard also said that more support from the government is required to scale up the aviation industry in India. Indian airlines were impacted negatively because of the two-months lockdown and then capped capacity to operate flights. More government support at such a time is required to keep the airlines afloat and surviving.