Jet Airways says international seat factors to lift seasonally weak Q2

Jet Airways says international seat factors to lift seasonally weak Q2

Mumbai: Jet Airways (India) Ltd expects seat factors on international routes to improve in the second quarter ending 30 September, which would offset a seasonally weak domestic market, a senior official said on Monday.

The second quarter “historically shows lower seat factor because of reduced leisure travel in the domestic segment," Saroj Datta, executive director, said in a conference call with analysts.

“International routes on the other hand would show improved seat factors which should help compensate for the fall in demand for domestic operations," Datta said.

The group, which has a fleet of 112 aircrafts, plans to add between 4-6 aircrafts on lease for its domestic routes this year. It has already taken delivery of 1-2 aircraft.

It, however, has no plans to enhance capacity on its international routes this fiscal, KG Vishwanath, vice president of strategy and investor relations, said.

“Going forward, we have an order book which is anywhere between 3-4 aircraft on a per-year basis," he said.

Jet Airways, India’s top private carrier by sales, has been recording seat factors of over 80% for its international routes in the past months as demand for premium travel rises.

“There is a revival in demand for premium traffic. This is expected to continue over the next few quarters," Datta added.

A recovery in the global markets and a booming domestic market have pushed up business and leisure travel in the country, helping airlines and hospitality firms.

Domestic air traffic rose nearly 22% in Jan-June this year, government data showed.

In July so far, Jet has seen seat factors of around 83% on international routes. Domestic seat factors are seen at around 74%, officials said in the call.

Last week, Jet reported a net profit of Rs3.52 crore in the June quarter from a loss of Rs225 crore a year ago, buoyed by improving air traffic and lower depreciation costs.

The airline has outstanding dues to fuel suppliers amounting to Rs760 crore to Rs770 crore and all dues were covered by bank guarantees, officials said.

Shares of Jet Airways closed up 0.59% at Rs617.75 in a weak Mumbai market.