Published: May 04 2023
Wizz Air has announced plans to add India as a destination to its route map in 2024, subject to the arrival of Airbus A321XLR aircrafts in its fleet. József Váradi, CEO of the Hungarian airline, stated that they will operate flights to India via its Gulf subsidiary Wizz Air Abu Dhabi. This move will make Abu Dhabi the European connecting point for the airline.
Wizz Air's expansion plans
Once the A321XLRs are added to the fleet, Wizz Air plans to connect the Indian subcontinent non-stop with flights to the European Union. With 47 aircrafts on order, the airline would also use them to operate a London-Delhi non-stop flight. Wizz Air Abu Dhabi, the airline's Gulf subsidiary, will operate Wizz Air's flights to India as a result of the strong demand between the United Arab Emirates and India. Moreover, the airline is interested in connecting India directly to the European network, and Wizz Air is the most suitable operator for the destination among European airlines.
Growth amidst the pandemic recovery
Despite the pandemic, the airline industry is set to reach around 95% of its pre-Covid capacity. However, Wizz Air aims to reach an additional 160% of pre-Covid capacity. Therefore, the airline anticipates having a load factor of between 90 and 96%. The airline is increasing its staff, operations planning, maintenance, logistics, and standby staff to accommodate this increased demand. Furthermore, Wizz Air's fleet will increase from 180 to 200 planes this year to make operations more reliable and mitigate potential disruptions that might arise during the summer period, which can lead to delays.
Wizz Air's expansion plans show how they are capitalizing on the reopening of air routes amidst the pandemic. By planning to add India to its route map, the airline would have created another low-cost option for travelers to fly to and from the country directly. Meanwhile, its efforts to grow amid the pandemic recovery position it as a leading European airline operator that may offer travelers an alternative to current highly-regulated and more expensive flight options.
Questions & Answers
What is Wizz Air? Wizz Air is a Hungarian multinational low-cost airline.
What is Wizz Air's plan for India? Wizz Air plans to add India to its route map in 2024, once the new Airbus A321XLR aircraft are in the fleet. They plan to connect the Indian subcontinent non-stop with flights to the European Union.
When will Wizz Air's new planes arrive in the fleet for flights to India to commence? Wizz Air plans to add India to its route map in 2024, once the new Airbus A321XLR aircraft are in the fleet.
How far can the Airbus A321XLR aircraft fly? The Airbus A321XLR aircraft are capable of flying nearly 9,000 kilometers.
When will Wizz Air start operating flights to India? Wizz Air plans to add India to its route map in 2024.
Why will Wizz Air operate flights to India via its Gulf subsidiary? Wizz Air will operate flights to India via its Gulf subsidiary Wizz Air Abu Dhabi due to the strong demand between the United Arab Emirates and India.
What other destinations does Wizz Air plan to fly to in addition to India? Wizz Air plans to acquire licences for Pakistan, meaning that soon they could offer flights to that country as well.
What is Wizz Air's position in Europe? While the airline industry will reach around 95% of its pre-COVID capacity this summer, Wizz Air's CEO stated they could reach 160%. Currently, they are operating with a load factor of between 90 and 96 percent.
Did Wizz Air face any issues with regards to flight cancellations or delays last summer? Yes, WizzAir faced several instances of canceled or delayed flights last summer, mainly due to staff shortages in the sector, particularly in air traffic control, ground operations, baggage handling, security, and airports.
What is Wizz Air doing to prepare for the peak summer season amid the impact of the war in Ukraine on air traffic management? Wizz Air is preparing for the peak summer season by doubling the number of staff in operations planning, maintenance and logistics, and has also rearranged staff schedules to avoid the long delays of last summer. The number of standby staff has also been increased and this year there will be five spare aircraft, compared to three last year.
How much will Wizz Air spend to make their operations more reliable amid the increase in fleet size to 200? With an increase in fleet size to 200 aircraft this year, the cost of more reliable operations is estimated at €100 million.