Cheaper for Delhiites to ‘Scoot’ out of Jaipur to Singapore

Taipei, Oct 31 (IANS) It is far much cheaper for Delhiites to fly out of Jaipur to Singapore by Scoot than taking a direct flight to the Lion City, says a top official of Scoot Airlines.

In the global operations of the Singapore-headquartered Scoot Airlines, India is the third-highest market after China and Australia following the merger of short-haul airline Tiger Air and and medium-to-long-haul Scoot.

“One of the trends we notice is that people from Delhi fly out to Singapore from Jaipur, as it works economical than taking a direct flight out of the Indian capital,” Bharath Mahadevan, Country Head-India of Scoot Airlines, told IANS in an interview.

According to him, the lowest fare between Delhi-Singapore will be around Rs 25,000 on any carrier. The fare between Jaipur-Singapore ranges between Rs 12,000 and Rs 14,000.

He said lots of people do drive down to Jaipur from Delhi and even if they take a flight to Jaipur from Delhi, the cost would work out cheaper.

Scoot is a low-cost, medium-to-long-haul carrier owned and managed by Budget Aviation Holdings (BAH) under the Singapore Airlines Group (SIA). The company also operates low-cost short-haul Tiger Air.

Scoot operates between Singapore and Sydney, Gold Coast, Perth, Melbourne, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Taipei, Tokyo, Osaka, Tianjin, Shenyang, Nanjing, Guangzhou, Qingdao, Seoul, Kaohsiung, Hangzhou, Jeddah, Chennai, Amritsar, Jaipur, Sapporo and Dalian across nine countries.

Scoot has also announced that it will be launching Singapore-Athens four-times-a-week service from June 20, 2017.

“The merger of Tiger Air-Scoot at the corporate level has been completed. We are in the process of merging the brand. In order to have a single Scoot brand in India, it would take some time as the Air Operator Certificate (AOC) has to be obtained,” Mahadevan said.

Currently, Scoot connects Singapore with Chennai, Amritsar and Jaipur in India.

“Our load factor between Chennai-Singapore is 90 per cent, while this month (October) it was 80 per cent as less people travel during this festival season.”

“In Amritsar, we started with 80 per cent load factor and it is around 60 per cent. Similarly, the load factor on Jaipur-Singapore route is around 60 per cent,” Mahadevan said.

According to him, Scoot with its bigger Boeing 787 Dreamliner replaced Tiger Air flights out of Chennai, giving the economies of scale.

However, there is no move to bring in bigger aircraft under Tiger Air brand now as the airline operates on smaller routes.

“Our market share in the Chennai-Singapore sector will be around 25 per cent. In Chennai, we are trying for early departure, say around 11.30 p.m. for Singapore from the current 1.20 a.m.,” Mahadevan said.

The Chennai-Singapore sector is profitable for Scoot Airlines from day one, whereas Amritsar and Jaipur sectors are expected to turn profitable in around nine months’ time, he added.

“The market to fly to Singapore out of South India is large and there is lot of demand. The cargo capacity has increased with Scoot coming into picture in India with its bigger aircraft,” he said.

According to Mahadevan, the revenue from food and beverages is around five per cent, as the two of the Scoot flights out of India are in the night.

“Scoot and Tiger Airways combine fly 50 flights in India. The Singapore Airlines group operates 15 destinations in the country, the largest that foreign carrier is operating in India. The group is second only to Air India to operate a large number of international flights out of India,” he said.

Scoot currently has 12 Dreamliners in the fleet and eight more are on order.

Looking ahead, he said: “The airline is looking at organic growth — increasing the frequency in the sectors currently served by it — and also targeting tier-2 Indian cities.”

(Venkatachari Jagannathan was in Taipei at the invitation of Scoot Airlines and Taiwan Tourism Board. He can be reached at v.jagannathan@ians.in)

–IANS

vj/nir/vt

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