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Indigo to China Airlines: Worsening pilot shortage sours Asia's travel boom

Southeast Asia and India are likely to face the brunt of the shortfall, with the most impact felt by four carriers -- AirAsia, IndiGo, Lion Air and VietJet

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An unprecedented travel boom in Asia has spawned new budget carriers and millions of first-time fliers, but a shortage of pilots is threatening to choke that demand.

Bamboo Airways Co. in Vietnam was the latest low-cost carrier to start services this year and more are expected to join the race. In Southeast Asia alone, LCCs have about 1,400 aircraft on order, compared with fewer than 400 for full-service carriers, according to CAPA Centre for Aviation. With the supply of pilots lagging behind, the airlines will struggle to find skilled cockpit crew.

“There’s a real crunch coming,” Peter Harbison, executive chairman of Sydney-based

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First Published: Feb 27 2019 | 10:55 AM IST

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