Blue Air to Bucharest and back
Malev ceases all flights
SpiceJet gets new fleet and new second city routes
The dynamic Indian low cost carrier, SpiceJet is launching a new network of routes connecting secondary cities in India using Bombadier Dash 8 Q400 turbo-prop aircraft. This Canadian built 78 seater aircraft is the most technologically advanced turboprop currently being built.
In phase one of the new network launch, SpiceJet will be launching connections to a list of new cities including Vijayawada (VGA), Rajahmundry (RJA), Tirupati (TIR ), Aurangabad (IXU), Mangalore (IXE), Indore (IDR), and Bhopal (BHO) with a main base in out of Hyderabad (HYD). Phase two will see flights between Hyderbad (HYD) to Madurai (HYD-IXM), Vizag to Tirupati (VTZ-TIR), Bangalore to Vizag (BLR-VTZ) Hyderabad to Goa (HYD-GOI) and Hyderabad to Nagpur (HYD-NAG).
This is a bold and innovative move by a low cost airline which had previously followed the industry model of keeping costs low by using a single manufacturer jet aircraft fleet. In the fast growing but fiercely competitive world of Indian Air Travel, Spice Jet with its new for 2011 investors seems a good bet for success. This new venture is one which could radically increase the size of the market by grabbing passengers from the Indian Railways network. SpiceJet is one of our favourite airlines, watch out for more announcements in the future !
Zombie Airlines a new term for airlines on the rack
We are seeing the emergence of a new industry term "Zombie Airlines" being used to describe airlines whose owners are refusing to continue to back them through this difficult European economic recession, thereby placing them at risk of ceasing to fly. It is being suggested that Spanair's demise last week, after the withdrawal of support from its Provincial Government backing, will herald more collapses as difficult trading conditions and escalating costs continue to bite. HIgh on the lists being bandied around by journalists include EasternEuropean carriers, Malev and Czech airlines, whilst further afield the troubled, but once great, Air Zimbabwe is named. Even more worrying is when airlines like the mighty Scandinavian giant, SAS, gets the news from their Government shareholders that any further aid is unlikely to be forthcoming, whilst also learning that their major low cost competitor, Norwegian, has announced a record breaking order for 222 brand new aircraft... a squeeze is a squeeze in any industry but it becomes even more painful when the one being squeezed is also publicly linked with an "old planes and high costs" image by the newer upstart...
It is no exaggeration to say that we are in the midst of an industry transformation, one which will ultimately provide passengers with lower ticket prices on more efficient aircraft operated by ruthlessly cost-centric organisations, but for many it will be a painful transformation where the old ways are swept aside by the aggressive use of new technologies and less customer centric policies. Alternative Airlines will continue to support lesser known airlines around the globe with our focus continuing to be one where we aim to offer our passengers a bigger, better informed choice of carrier - where ever and whenever they wish to fly. Despite airline consolidations, mergers, acquisitions and failures choice will continue to grow as new airlines launch and established airlines with real competitive advantage thrive, Alternative Airlines will continue to keep abreast of the changes and help our passengers make sense of a turbulent industry.