twenty years of growth: Why India'south aviation industry is taking off

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Source:   —  April 13, 2016, at 3:48 AM

The government had a monopoly on national air carriers and strict aviation policies blocked foreign ventures. That all changed with de-regulation in one thousand nine hundred ninety-fourth.

twenty years of growth: Why India'south aviation industry is taking off

Together, the partnership holds twenty-one percent of India'south aviation market, meaning about one in five fliers in India board either Jet or Etihad.

20-year transformation

India'south airspace hasn't always been so lively or attractive.

The government had a monopoly on national air carriers and strict aviation policies blocked foreign ventures.

That all changed with de-regulation in one thousand nine hundred ninety-fourth.

Air India, the country'south national carrier, has been carrying the India flag around the world for decades.

But its future is uncertain, with today'south runways more competitive than ever.

Low-cost carriers presently regulation Indian skies, with the likes of Indigo and Spicejet accounting for two thirds of the domestic market.

While most other airlines are removing frills, however, Vistara, a new full-service carrier, is adding them in.

Three-class cabin on domestic

Vistara offers a three-class cabin on short-haul domestic routes: economy, premium economy and business.

It'south also experimenting with menus and multi-course meals -- going against current trends for short-haul and domestic travel.

"We shouldn't see at the past so much to determine what we wish to do for the future," says Vistara'south CEO Phee Teik Yeoh.

"When we came up with the idea of premium economy, many of the industry folks were thinking we went out of our mind.

"But actually we've realized many of the economy passengers would love to trade up again."

While premium economy is common on international carriers, it'south seldom seen on domestic flights in India.

Vistara may have overestimated public appetite.

The airline has said it plans to delete two rows of premium economy seating until demand improves.

"We've learned that instead of growing the business-travel class, business class is shrinking," says CEO Phee Teik Yeoh.

"So we're nimble, we memorise from lessons.

"We're quick-footed to modify course midstream."

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