Due to this decision by Tata Group’s airline, air travel will be expensive.

Tata Group airline Vistara is going to reduce the number of its flights by 10 percent. There is discontent among the company's pilots over rostering and salary cuts. Due to the reduced number of flights during peak season, airfares can increase.

Attention India
4 Min Read

Tata Group’s airline company, Vistara, shows no signs of abating. The company is reducing flights by 10%. Most of which are domestic flights. There is discontent among airline pilots over rostering and salary cuts. Ahead of the summer tourist season, Vistara has decided to reduce the number of its flights. This can widen the supply-demand gap and increase rents. Air fares are already too high.

Not enough planes

The number of passengers is at a record, but there are not enough planes to carry them. The number of flights in the country has decreased due to many reasons. For example, 75 aircraft of IndiGo, the country’s largest airline, have been grounded due to problems with Pratt & Whitney engines. Similarly, GoAir operations are closed. SpiceJet is able to operate only a few flights. Aircraft manufacturing companies Boeing and Airbus are in trouble due to the slow supply of new aircraft.

A Vistara spokesperson said that we are cutting back to 25–30 flights per day, which is about 10% of our total operating capacity. At the end of February 2024, we were operating the same number of flights per day. That will give us flexibility and a buffer on the roster. Most of the canceled flights are within the domestic network. We do not want our customers to face any inconvenience.

An EaseMyTrip spokesperson said that the Indian travel industry is expected to witness significant growth. It may increase by 12–14% in FY25. But this increase may be affected by the increase in air fares. The number of domestic air passengers is increasing, but the industry does not have enough capacity. About 25% of the aircraft are expected to be grounded by the end of this financial year due to maintenance and mechanical issues.

What is the problem?

Domestically and internationally, the air travel industry is facing many challenges and changes. A large gap between demand and supply is likely to drive up rents. Vistara was to operate 2,324 flights this summer, up 25% from last year’s 1,856. But now it is difficult to do so. The airline says all affected passengers have already been accommodated on other flights. There is discontent among airline pilots over rostering and salary cuts. Pilots of other airlines have also complained about the rostering. DGCA revised Flight Duty Time Limitation (FDTL) rules for pilots.

Airlines opposed the revised FDTL. They say that this will require more pilots and increase their financial burden. For this reason, it cannot be implemented at present. Vistara has partially addressed pilots’ concerns over rostering but is not in a position to cut pay as it has to bring the pay structure on par with Air India. Vistara will merge with Air India by the end of this year. The airline, with 70 aircraft, operates around 350 flights daily with over 1,000 pilots.

-Rahul Dubey

Share This Article
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply