SpiceJet, the low-cost carrier (LCC) from India has announced that come December 2020, it will operate flights to London Heathrow from New Delhi & Mumbai. A long-haul destination dream of Spicejet to come true.
Non-stop flight to London will be a game-changer in the LCC segment and the first of its kind. A look at the schedule also indicates the timings are going to be very convenient in both the directions.
TR understands that it has planned to operate A330-900neo flights while SpiceJet is known to be a near-total Boeing fleet. TR believes it is a calculated move to operate the A330-900neo’s as the Boeing Dreamliner B787 will be expensive to operate and the A330-900neo (new engine option) with a seating capacity of 371seats in a two-class configuration is a perfect fit to operate in this sector.
SpiceJet’s Long-haul flight aspirations coming true.
While SpiceJet was applying for slots at multiple airports in the UK over the last few scheduling seasons, this comes as a surprise that SpiceJet has a firm schedule from December 04 onwards to operate flights between Mumbai-London & New Delhi-London.
What is the gamble for SpiceJet with the London Long-haul flight?
Practically quite a few points can be scored by SpiceJet if all goes well. The choice of A330-900neo with a seating capacity of 317 – 18 business class included – is a clear winner for this LLC operator.
Convenient flight timings from and to Mumbai & New Delhi has a distinctive advantage. The Mumbai-London flight will depart at 12.45 (local time) and will arrive in London at 5.30 p.m. (local time) Flights are planned for thrice a week and includes one from Mumbai and twice-a-week flights from New Delhi. This is perhaps to test the demand and also to check the crew & operating costs for a while. If successful in terms of the load factor, SpiceJet is likely to consider increasing frequencies and may add other destinations viz., Chennai & Hyderabad.
The all-inclusive Mumbai-London-Mumbai and New Delhi-London-New Delhi return introductory tickets are priced at Rupees 53,555 and at GBP 565. One-way tickets are priced at Rupees 25,555.00 (GBP 270) for the New Delhi-London route and at rupees 29,555.00 for the Mumbai-London route (GBP 312)
The timing of departure at Mumbi & New Delhi – afternoon departures and the arrival in London – evening arrivals are expected to be received as a favourably by passengers. Basically, same-day departure and arrival are likely to be greeted with thumbs-up by passengers.
Similarly, the return flights are also expected to be greeted with patronage as Flights from London to Delhi will depart every Monday and Friday at 7.30 pm (Local Time) and arrive in Delhi at 7.55 am (Local Time) the next day. Flights from London to Mumbai will depart every Sunday at 7.30 pm (Local Time) and arrive in Mumbai at 8.45 am (Local Time) the following day.
However, there is one serious concern. No one can estimate the COVID-19 bubble and its likely second-wave. That can alter the whole plan. Your comments, please.