Looking for a low cost airline to travel fast and travel cheaply? Five years ago, low-cost passengers chose trains over flights. This meant that one had to save less than three days to reach Delhi from Bangalore. The picture is drastically different today. Native Americans are flying flights like never before. This sea (or air) change is partly due to a changing economy. The flight of low-cost airlines in India with Indigo Airlines, Jet Airvais Konnect Airlines, SpiceJet, JetLite, Kingfisher Red, Air India Express and GoAir has made it possible for anyone to fly.
Low-cost carriers are quickly gaining market share, albeit at the expense of their complete service counterparts. This is predominantly due to the way low-cost carriers were able to control their costs during the recession. The Center for Asian Pacific Aviation predicted that Indian LCCs would gather a huge 70% share of the domestic market by 2010. Challenges could be the cost of aviation fuel (although they have followed significantly over the past year), low yields and lack of adequate infrastructure. Despite everything, LCCS is quickly gaining market share. IndiGo Airlines, which is said to be the most popular LCC, has a market share of 11%, while SpiceJet has just over 10% of the pie. Kingfisher Red, formerly Air Deccan, captured an astounding 15% of market share, and JetLite managed to gain 7% of the airline's market share.
These figures look appealing because for most people the professionals of low-cost companies are far more important than the disadvantages. If you are not looking for expensive services at an airline and your only intention is to get from one far part of India to another, low cost airlines are for you. The main difference here is that low-cost carriers do not offer free food and drink. They have a selection of snacks that you can also buy. In fact, airlines like IndiGo and SpiceJet even let you carry food.
In a strange move, Air India recently rejected its low-cost carrier launch plan. This is a surprising turnaround from a national airline at a time when most airlines are trying to cede their space to the LCC market. For example, Jet Air Konnect recently launched Jet Airvais to connect Tier 2 cities. This is another low-cost carrier from Jet Airvais after launching JetLite in 2007. Kingfisher is India's second leading airline offering low cost carriers with its Kingfisher Red division. Kingfisher Red is the only low cost carrier that also offers hot food to pallets.
With their low prices and accuracy of services, airlines are becoming very popular. They also have new aircraft as an added benefit. LCCs also offer easy online booking and cancellation services. While previously focused on important destinations, LCCs today also serve smaller cities across India. They also offer the benefits of in-flight fun and well-trained staff, making it easy for everyone to travel. What needs to be compromised are legroom, cramped seats and luxurious services. That may not mean much to those who earn the opportunity to fly a plane for the first time! The major drawback with LCC is that it is not possible to switch from IndiGo or SpiceJet Airlines to another flight or to another carrier. Some low-cost airlines offer two-segment shuttle services in certain sectors. However, most low-cost airlines offer air-conditioned bus services to transport passengers on board aircraft. Most LCCs do not even offer frequent flying benefits.