The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) granted an air operator permit (AOP) to Vistara on Monday, paving the way for its take-off.
While the airline is yet to announce its launch date and share product details, sources said the carrier is planning to launch in the second week of January 2015.
“The airline may launch on January 7 or 9 with a first flight on Delhi-Mumbai route," a source said. The airline has a fleet of two Airbus A320 planes and it is said to be exploring a flight on the Delhi-Ahmedabad-Mumbai route. Bookings are likely to be open in the next couple of days.
“We will share our routes and flight schedule with you soon,” a Vistara spokesperson said in response to an email query on the launch date. Vistara, a full-service airline, is a joint venture of Tata Singapore Airlines. The tie-up was announced in September 2013 with an initial investment of $100 million. Tata Sons holds 51 per cent in the airline. It applied for operator permit in April and was planning to start operations in October.
However, clearance was delayed due to the Federal Aviation Administration audit of the DGCA. Phee Teik Yeoh, chief executive officer, Vistara, said, “I am delighted that we have successfully cleared the final requirement and secured the AOP. All our energies now are going to be concentrated towards fulfilling the Vistara brand promise. Our focus on customer service excellence coupled with unique product offerings will ensure seamless travel experience to our customers.”
Vistara plans to scale up with five aircraft fleet by next March. Its network plan, which was shared with the DGCA, said it will have 87 weekly flights linking Delhi to Mumbai, Goa, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Jammu, Srinagar, Patna and Chandigarh. It has booked six slots at the Delhi airport.
According to sources the airline is likely to have a three class configuration – business, premium economy and economy. The airline however has not shared details regarding seat configuration.