There’s a new aircraft to watch out for In IndiGo’s fleet: the Airbus A321neo. After years of flying a strictly uniform fleet, IndiGo has said that it will begin outfitting some of its A321neos for long-haul flights. This means the aircraft will come equipped with more comfortable seats, extra legroom seats, and ovens for hot food options.
Not the same
For the first time in its history, IndiGo is planning to upgrade select aircraft for longer flights in the network. According to The Times of India, CEO Ronojoy Dutta said in a statement that the carrier’s planes that do nearly seven hours will see upgrades for better comfort. In particular, he said,
“We have decided on new seats on some of our planes with more cushioning and these planes will have more legroom for passengers. These single aisles will be used for up to 7-hour international flights. We are also looking at having ovens in these planes. Actually, we had never stopped looking at ovens.”
The decision means that IndiGo will reduce the density of its packed A321neos to accommodate well-padded seats, more pitch, and a modern galley offering hot dishes. This is a direct response to passenger complaints on flights to Istanbul, an over seven-hour journey made by the Airbus narrowbody. After a year of cold meals, only hot pot noodles, and thin seats, IndiGo is set to go the extra mile.
While IndiGo’s uniform fleet strategy may not have been comfortable for passengers flying long-haul, it does provide the best efficiency. The A321neos were able to quickly transition into domestic service without missing a beat, maximizing revenue between longer hops. Now, IndiGo will have to adapt to less revenue on shorter flights using their ‘premium A321neos.’
With the above being said, IndiGo’s A321neo fleet has grown four times since the pandemic hit last year, giving it more than enough flexibility to modify cabins. With enough aircraft for domestic operations, the low-cost giant will try to almost exclusively fly the upgraded A321neos internationally or on key routes like Delhi-Mumbai.
The upgrades will be appreciated by the flying public, which was growing thin patience with domestic cabins on seven-hour services. Now, passengers can enjoy a lot more on their IndiGo flights with little to no price difference. Trust us, the difference between cold noodles and hot noodles is huge!
In the game
IndiGo’s upgrades also come ahead of Tata’s purchase of Air India and a possible merger with Vistara and AirAsia India. The low-cost carrier has already mentioned the new Air India as a “formidable competitor,” and this upgrade could be the first big response. While these changes have been under consideration since 2019, this is the time IndiGo chose to bite the bullet.
For passengers, more competition is always a good thing, and IndiGo’s new A321neos will be an exciting addition for all travelers.
What do you think about IndiGo’s decision to upgrade select jets? Let us know in the comments!