Assam: Indigo flight carrying ministers returns before takeoff
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New Delhi: The country’s largest airline IndiGo will start direct flights to six new destinations in Africa and Central Asia, including to Nairobi, Tbilisi and Tashkent, this year.

Embarking on “massive” international expansion plans, the carrier will connect Nairobi in Kenya and Jakarta in Indonesia, with direct flights from Mumbai in late July or early August.

“Delhi will get connected in August to Tbilisi, Georgia & Baku, Azerbaijan and in September to Tashkent, Uzbekistan, and Almaty, Kazakhstan,” IndiGo said in a release on Friday.

Once these routes are operational, the budget airline will be connecting a total of 32 international destinations compared to 26 currently.

While noting that it is taking a “massive step in its international expansion strategy,” IndiGo said it will be adding an “impressive 174 new weekly international flights between June and September 2023, including new destinations, routes, and frequencies”.

IndiGo said it will also be resuming daily services from Delhi to Hong Kong in August. This flight was suspended three years ago during the coronavirus pandemic.

“The addition of these exciting new destinations, new direct flight routes, enhanced flight frequencies, and strategic codeshare partnerships, will help us expand our footprint across four continents with Africa and Central Asia being penetrated for the first time.

“With this expansion in our network, we will now be directly touching 32 international destinations (up from 26), next to our 78 domestic destinations,” IndiGo CEO Pieter Elbers said.

He also said the airline is executing its strategy ‘Towards New Heights and Across New Frontiers’ and is poised to establish unparalleled connections between people and places.

The expansion also comes at a time when there is a rising demand for international travel from, to and via India, as well as the government’s efforts to develop an international aviation hub in the country.

Besides, Air India Group is set for an ambitious expansion of its fleet and services to connect with more international destinations.

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Meanwhile, IndiGo is strengthening its connectivity to Europe through the codeshare connections with Turkish Airlines. Currently, it offers connectivity to 33 destinations in Europe via Istanbul.

“As part of the codeshare partnership with Turkish Airlines, IndiGo will soon be offering connectivity to North America, closing final regulatory approvals,” the release said.

IndiGo, the country’s largest airline with a domestic market share of more than 57 per cent, has a fleet of over 300 planes and operates more than 1,800 daily flights.

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