Akasa Air plans to increase total employee count to over 3,000 by March 2024 and is in the process of finalising its overseas destination. Akasa Air is set to hire roughly 1,000 new employees to take the overall workforce to over 3,000 by the end of March 2024, as per a report by news agency PTI. In an interview with PTI, CEO Vinay Dube said that the seven month-old airline, which started operations in August 2022, will also foray into new routes and launch international flights, too, by the end of 2023. The foreign destinations are yet to be finalised.
Dube revealed that a ‘three-digit aircraft order’ will be placed by the end of the year. Along with 19 Boeing 737 Max aircraft already in operation, Akasa Air is expanding its fleet to include 72 more, which is expected to be delivered by early 2027. The 20th Boeing 737 Max will be ready for overseas functions after its induction in April. The next financial year will see the airline add nine more aircrafts, taking total fleet size to 28. Stressing that the company focuses on consistent growth instead of ‘ growth for the sake of growth’, Duba said that the airline will take its daily flight operations to 150 from the current 110 (in 17 domestic routes) by the end of summer.
The 2,000-strong workforce will rise to 3,000 by the end of next financial year and include 1,100 pilots and flight attendants, Dube said. The airline always hires in advance for the aircrafts scheduled to start operations in three months. On hiring challenges post Covid-19, Dube said Akasa Air has tapped ‘good talent’ and will continue to focus on employees to maintain it. Explaining its three focal points, Dube said that the airline only wants to ensure customer and employee satisfaction in a sustainable manner with a robust price system. This is possible because the company, which calls itself ‘India’s most dependable airline’, is not chasing market clout or top ranks in the aviation sector, he added.
Akasa Air is in talks with the ministry of civil aviation to chart the available routes and traffic rights to kickstart its operations abroad. Without naming the locations, Dubai revealed that the airline was eyeing countries in both the east and west. “… we may want to fly to X cities, and there may be traffic rights available for that country, but in that particular airport, you may not have slots. All these permutations and combinations are being worked on right now,” he told PTI.
Dube expressed happiness on the achievements of the country’s newest airline as it took up 3% of the domestic market share by flying 3.61 lakh travellers in February this year. The latest official data also put its on-time performance at 87%.