Scoot eyes the launch of long-haul flights from India

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The Singapore-based low-cost carrier, Scoot, wants to launch its long-haul flights from India.

The airline began flying between Singapore and India this year, with its initial routes to Amritsar and Chennai followed by the recently launched flights to Jaipur.

Scoot’s country head for India, Bharath Mahadevan, said that the airline wants to take advantage of fifth freedom rights to launch new services linking India with Europe, North America and the Middle East.

“There is a market for long-haul LCCs to come into India or be based here,” said Mahadevan. “If allowed, our fare could be Rs 5,000 and Rs 10,000 on Delhi-London and Delhi-New York respectively, one-way.”

However, these flights would not be launched soon since the Singaporean carriers have already used all of their flying rights in India. But Mahadevan outlined his vision for a significant expansion of Scoot’s Indian operations, should these rights be expanded.

“If the bilateral [flying rights] are increased, we can… fly to places like Zurich, Paris, Manchester, Amsterdam, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Bahrain. There is a huge pent-up demand for international travel from India and it needs to be tapped at the right price point. The demand is very strong in tier-two cities,” he added.

In 2017, Scoot’s Indian operations would be expanded significantly when it merges with Tigerair, the Singaporean LCC that currently flies direct to five Indian cities, which include Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Kochi, Lucknow and Tiruchirapalli.