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IndiGo considers Widebody Aircraft purchase

 

IndiGo is reportedly exploring the acquisition of widebody aircraft, as per sources familiar with the matter. This potential move aims to expand Asia’s largest budget carrier’s international reach and heighten competition with Air India Ltd.

While IndiGo is evaluating various options, insiders suggest that the airline is leaning towards placing an order for approximately 30 Airbus SE A350s. However, no final decision has been made yet, and details such as the timing and quantity of the aircraft order remain subject to change.

IndiGo has previously contemplated entering the long-haul market to cater to the increasing number of affluent Indian travelers venturing to destinations like the UK and Europe. Currently, the low-cost carrier operates two Boeing Co. 777s leased from Turkish Airlines for flights to Istanbul, primarily maintaining a fleet dominated by single-aisle Airbus jets.

Following its monumental order of 500 A320neo family aircraft last year, IndiGo solidified its position as one of Airbus’s major clients, resulting in a backlog of approximately 1,000 aircraft. However, both IndiGo and Airbus declined to provide official comments on the matter.

Established in 2005, IndiGo presently operates over 2,000 flights daily to 118 destinations. In 2023, it joined the ranks of airlines transporting over 100 million passengers annually, with plans to double this figure by the end of the decade.

While venturing into long-haul operations presents opportunities, it also poses risks for budget airlines. Past experiences of carriers like Norwegian Air Shuttle ASA, AirAsia X, and WOW Air struggling to sustain long-haul operations underscore the challenges associated with this segment.

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