The Singapore Airlines-Tata joint venture Vistara is likely to induct some of Jet Airways' Boeing 737s in its fleet and may offer jobs to a few B737 pilots of the crisis-ridden airline, reports said on Sunday. The airline is also conducting a walk-in interview for cabin crew on 29 and 30 April in Mumbai and Gurgaon, which will attract applications from Jet Airways' employees.
Vistara currently has Airbus A320 in its narrow-body fleet and for wide-body, the airline has placed an order for six Boeing 787 Dreamliner 787-9. These aircraft will primarily be used for long-haul routes and are expected to arrive by 2020.
Commenting on the same, the Tata Sons-Singapore Airlines joint venture airline told TOI “The recent reduction in capacity has inconvenienced travellers, especially in the full-service segment. We will continue to grow our network to meet market demand."
Jet Airways, on April 16, announced that it will suspend all operations, domestic and international, with immediate effect.
If Vistara inducts B737s, it will be the second Indian airline, after Air India, to have a mixed fleet of narrow-body Boeing and Airbus aircraft. Vistara could also get more slots at the constrained Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore airports after Jet's suspension freed up slots there.
Jet's grounding has also had a big impact on air fares with inter-city air fares to major cities such as New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Kolkata soaring more than 20 per cent in May and June, according to Yatra.com.
The spike in fares is expected to underpin strong earnings for IndiGo and SpiceJet Ltd, which are set to report results for the quarter ended March 31 in the coming weeks.
"Domestic Indian carriers are the main benefactors, but I suspect if Jet fails to be revived by May 10 then Vistara and other airlines that ply international routes, particularly the lucrative Gulf market, are the main winners," Shukor Yusof, the head of aviation consultancy Endau Analytics was quoted as saying by Reuters.
Earlier this month Vistara announced launch of five flights between Mumbai and Bengaluru and one new flight from Mumbai to Hyderabad and Kolkata. These would operate from April 16 to July 15. Currently, Vistara flies to Delhi and Amirtsar from Mumbai and its market growth has been stunted due to non-availability of slots.
Vistara will be reducing frequencies on other routes to operate these additional services from Mumbai.