MUMBAI- According to a senior executive, TATA SIA Vistara (UK) plans to expand its operations by adding 10 aircraft and hiring over 1,000 aviation staff in the current fiscal year. However, the airline has decided to postpone its plans to commence flights to the United States.
Vistara (UK) currently operates a fleet of 61 aircraft and employs more than 5,200 individuals. Further, the airline is in the process of merging with Air India (AI).
Vistara to Add 10 New aircraft and 1000 More staff
In a recent discussion, Vistara CEO Vinod Kannan mentioned that there is ample availability of skilled professionals. Particularly pilots and cabin crew members, following the discontinuation of Go First (G8).
“We followed a similar recruitment process as Air India and IndiGo (6E) for hiring the talent from Go First. It was essential for us to ensure that we select the right individuals in the right numbers.
We continue to attract skilled professionals from the job market. Further including freshers in the cabin crew segment,” Vinod Kannan, Vistara CEO, told PTI.
Indian carrier has successfully recruited approximately 50 pilots from Go First. Kannan further explained the airline’s hiring plans. Subsequently, he stated that they aim to add 10 aircraft and hire around 1,000 staff members during this financial year.
“To meet our requirements, we anticipate hiring around 1,000 staff members by the end of this financial year. Out of the 10 aircraft, one has already been added, and we are expecting the arrival of nine more, including three Boeing 787 Dreamliners. The remaining will be Airbus A320s,” Kannan said.
About Air India Vistara Merger
According to Kannan, Vistara has made the decision to cancel its plans to fly to the United States. The primary reason behind this decision is the requirement of a substantial number of aircraft to operate flights to the US.
A daily operation from India to the US would require at least three aircraft. Since the integration process is underway due to the ongoing merger with Air India, it is uncertain when and how the three aircraft would become available.
Considering the ongoing merger with Air India, which will result in the discontinuation of the Vistara brand, Kannan mentioned that the team responsible for building the Vistara brand will still be involved. He expressed that it is always favorable to conclude on a positive note.
When asked about the Vistara brand, Kannan described it as something that was meticulously built with a great deal of attention, care, effort, dedication, investment, and financial resources. He expressed gratitude that people recognize Vistara as a reputable brand to travel with.
Regarding the merger with Air India, Kannan acknowledged that Air India requires the expertise and workforce of Vistara due to its growth plans. He emphasized that the key concern is not whether individuals will have jobs but rather the nature of the roles they will be assigned.
In November 2022, the Tata Group announced the merger of Vistara with Air India. Singapore Airlines will hold a 25.1% stake in Air India as part of this agreement. The completion of the deal is anticipated by March 2024, pending regulatory approvals.
High Air Fares
Regarding airfares, the CEO of Vistara explained that the principles of supply and demand influence them.
The high airfares can be attributed to a few factors. Firstly, with the reduced capacity on routes previously served by Go First, there has been a decrease in available seats. Secondly, there is a peak in demand during the month of May for destinations where Go First used to operate. Despite efforts, the capacity has not fully recovered to compensate for the reduction caused by Go First.
According to the CEO, the most effective solution lies in increasing capacity. This week, the civil aviation ministry urged airlines to develop a mechanism that ensures reasonable pricing of air tickets, addressing the issue of escalating airfares on specific routes.
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