Singapore Airlines has announced its intention to expand its operation in India. The prestigious carrier will be operating newer and larger aircraft as a result of the expansion, serving the vast Indian population of over 1.3 billion people.
As emerging economies such as India continue to develop, more consumers are traveling overseas, ensuring that these markets are increasingly attractive to airlines. And Singapore Airlines is now ready to extend its relationship with India, having begun flying to the nation nearly 50 years ago.
India is ranked as the second most significant market in Asia, after the world’s most populous nation China. Singapore Airlines, its regional subsidiary Silk Air, and the budget airline run by the company, Scoot, already service 13 cities across the country.
And David Lim, the general manager of Singapore Airlines, told The Week that Singapore Airlines has achieved “double-digit growth” in India over the last three years. This level of growth has emboldened the popular carrier to further expand its services to India.
This latest decision is indicative of a new approach of Singapore Airlines in India, with the flag-carrying airline of Singapore having introduced a variety of different aircraft and services to the country in recent years.
For example, in July, 2017, the airline debuted the Airbus A350 long haul aircraft in Mumbai, while the Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft begun flying out of Delhi last year. And Singapore Airlines further expanded its Indian operation earlier this year, flying the A350 into Bengaluru and Kolkata, with plans to use its largest aircraft, the Airbus A380, out of Mumbai in the near future.
Singapore Airlines has also expanded its capacity to India by 40% since 2010, and this increase can be partly attributed to the carrier expanding the number of flights that it offers to Indian consumers. This will be extended further still in the months to come, with daily services between Singapore and Ahmedabad planned.
Jet Airways demise
The demise of Jet Airways has likely played a role in this decision from Singapore Airlines. Jet suspended all flight operations in April and is currently undergoing insolvency proceedings. Jet was previously the second most prolific airline in India, and therefore its demise has proved timely for its rival Singapore.
While the Indian market is obviously the primary motivation for this new initiative, Singapore Airlines also sees great potential in the wider business community. Passengers traveling beyond Indian destinations, to countries such as Australia, Japan and the United States, will form a bulk of business for the ambitious carrier.
With Vistara having already announced plans to extend its operation in the region, Singapore clearly feels the need to respond. The company has already announced related plans in the region, with Singapore Airlines set to merge with its regional subsidiary Silk Air.
Singapore Airlines was ranked second in the aviation research firm Skytrax’s annual ratings of the airline industry. Singapore was deposed from its number one position by Qatar Airways, but the carrier still remains one of the most successful and esteemed in the world.