New Delhi: SpiceJet Ltd is set to expand its international flights with a fleet of fuel-efficient Boeing 737 MAX 8 aircraft, the budget airline said in a statement Friday. It inducted today the first of its 205 such aircraft it had ordered in 2017 for $22 billion.
“These new airplanes will enable us to open new routes, while reducing fuel and engineering costs, as well as emissions," SpiceJet chairman Ajay Singh said in the statement. The aircraft is equipped with communication systems that will enable it to offer internet service on board once regulatory and government approvals are in place, the statement added.
According to SpiceJet, the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft will be used to expand and standardize its fleet and step up international and regional operations. A Delhi-Hong Kong flight, which will be SpiceJet’s eighth international destination, will be serviced exclusively by the 737 Max 8 aircraft.
SpiceJet is betting on the energy efficiency of this aircraft to soften the impact of high fuel cost, which has put pressure on the airline industry in recent months.
The Boeing 737 Max 8 can fly non-stop to Singapore, Doha, Kuwait, Abu Dhabi, Riyadh, Kuala Lumpur, Tehran and Kunming (China) from India, and to Finland, Norway, Morocco, London and Amsterdam with one stop, SpiceJet said.
The airline, on an average, operates daily 416 flights to 57 destinations, including 49 domestic and eight international ones. It has a fleet of 37 Boeing 737 MAX and NG jets and 23 Bombardier Q-400s.