PUNE: Akasa Air on Sunday commenced its commercial operations with its first flight taking off from Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport for Ahmedabad. The maiden flight took off from Mumbai at 10.05am with a scheduled arrival at Ahmedabad’s Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport at 11.25am.
As a symbolic gesture to mark the occasion during the ceremony, Akasa Air’s boarding pass was handed over to civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia and Union minister of state for civil aviation, General (Dr) VK Singh. Both guests-of-honour addressed the gathering and officially flagged off the event. Deputy chief minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis extended his wishes on the commencement of Akasa Air’s operations while addressing a gathering.
Starting Sunday, Akasa Air will offer weekly flights between Mumbai and Ahmedabad. Progressively adding cities and routes to its network, the airline has already announced a total of five routes along five cities – Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Kochi, Bengaluru and Chennai.
Commenting on the commencement of commercial operations, Vinay Dube, founder and chief executive officer of Akasa Air said the day marks a significant milestone in Akasa Air’s journey. “We successfully commenced our commercial operations with our maiden flight from Mumbai to Ahmedabad. This is not just a testament to the women and men of Akasa who have made this day possible, but also of India’s ongoing economic transformation and rapidly progressing civil aviation landscape,” he said.
The CEO added Akasa’s story is aligned with the nation’s journey towards making air travel affordable through Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s clarion call – Ude Desh ka Aam Naagrik. “We want to serve our country by creating strong transportation links which are the underpinning of any economic growth engine.”
“We are thrilled to bring alive our vision of building India’s greenest, most dependable and most affordable airline. Akasa Air’s empathetic and youthful personality, employee-friendly culture, customer-service philosophy, and tech-led approach will make this commitment a reality for us. We are now focussed on delivering a flying experience unlike anything witnessed in the Indian skies thus far,” he added.
With a fleet induction plan of two 737 MAX aircraft each month, the airline is looking to establish a strong pan-India presence, with a focus on metro to tier 2 and 3 route connectivity. The fleet size will be raised to 18 aircraft by the end of March 2023 and over the next four years, the airline will add 54 aircraft, taking its total fleet size to 72.