Jet Airways fleet shrinking, but holds ground with better performance 

With lessors de-registering Jet fleet and amid pilots and crew threatening to go on strike over non-payment of salaries, one would imagine Jet Airways to top the list of airlines affecting passengers

Published: 11th April 2019 08:38 AM  |   Last Updated: 11th April 2019 08:38 AM   |  A+A-

Jet Airways

Jet Airways aircrafts. (File | Reuters)

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: Troubles are mounting for Jet Airways by the day. However, the full-service carrier not only held its ground but also did better than others including market leader IndiGo and state-run Air India on key metrics in the last few months. Data from the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) shows that Jet Airways fared well on key parameters like passenger load factor, on-time performance and number of passengers affected due to flight delays and cancellations. 

With lessors de-registering Jet fleet and amid pilots and crew threatening to go on strike over non-payment of salaries, one would imagine Jet Airways to top the list of airlines affecting passengers due to flight cancellations and delays. Ironically, that distinction went to IndiGo and Air India. 

For instance, in February, a staggering 1,13,665 passengers flying IndiGo were affected due to delays beyond two hours, followed by Air India (53,498 passengers affected), as against Jet’s 529 — one of the lowest among operators. Experts reckon the reason to large fleet size of other carriers compared to Jet, whose number is sliced to the bone and currently stands at 26 from about 116. 

Given that Jet’s fleet is fast depleting, the number of cancellations too should be high, but that’s likely to reflect in the March data. At least in February, yet again, IndiGo’s passengers were most affected due to cancellations at 41,549 passengers, while the combined cancellation number of Jet Airways and Jet Lite stood at 13,595 passengers. 

The airline, which is succumbing to want of funds, performed better on metrics like the passenger load factor at 89.4 per cent compared to Air India’s 83.3 per cent and IndiGo’s 88.4 in February, implying that either customers continue their loyalty to Jet or are simply booking tickets due to short supply.   

Jet’s rate of cancellation of scheduled flights during February has been better at 1.89 per cent as against Air India’s 8.15 per cent and Air Asia’s 2.46 per cent, while its on-time performance in four metros - Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad and Mumbai that DGCA compiles - was also a shade better than IndiGo. 
Jet Airways carried 14.91 lakh passengers in January, but that fell to 11.33 in February, while its market share too dropped to 10 per cent from 11.9. The air carrier needs a `1,500-crore lifeline, without which it runs the risks of getting grounded by month-end.

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