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India’s Star Air Begins Service in Rajasthan

Star Air’s inaugural flight receives customary water cannon salute. (Photo: Harsh Tekriwal)

Star Air has commenced operations in Jaipur (JAI) from both Bengaluru (BLR) and Belagavi (IXG). The service to Jaipur is via Belagavi. The route is a thrice-weekly affair as advertised on the airline’s website and social media. The first flight was conducted using the Embraer 145. The first Star Air flight to Jaipur landed on Monday with a customary water canon salute, with the Jaipur International Airport management organizing a small event to celebrate the airline’s first flight to the city. With Star Air starting operations in the capital of Rajasthan, tourists from the western coast and southern part of the country have yet another option available to them.

The above operations come at a time when the regional airline is ramping up operations and routes in a steadfast manner. The airline services the Indian states of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Telangana, and Andhra Pradesh. With an operational fleet of seven Embraer Regional Jets, the airline’s ERJ-145s and the new ERJ-175s are increasing frequency and routes.

The airline commenced operations in January 2019 and is the sole active operator of the Embraer 175 and 145 in India. In India, the narrow-body aircraft market is dominated by Airbus and Boeing aircraft. The regional aircraft market is dominated by ATR and DeHavilland Canada. In such a market, Embraer has a presence in India because of Star Air. Embraer E-Jets were operated in India between 2005-2010 by now-defunct Paramount Airways.

The new route to Jaipur will increase the available capacity for the city and the state. Rajasthan has a lot of tourist traffic owing to tourist destinations like Jaisalmer, Jodhpur, Udaipur, etc., and several religious destinations. Star Air’s flights will help boost tourism, according to the airline. Several other Indian airlines like IndiGo, SpiceJet, Vistara, etc., do operate flights to Jaipur. However, Star Air is the only airline to operate flights in the Belagavi-Jaipur sector.

Filling the gap left by GoFirst

Another airline that used to operate flights to Jaipur from Bangalore was GoFirst. The airline was in the news due to its decision to file for voluntary insolvency proceedings under the Indian Bankruptcy Code. As the article is being written, the airline’s operations are still halted.

Star Air’s offering to Jaipur will also manage to take some advantage in the vacuum created by GoFirst’s insolvency proceedings.

With this development, the Indian aviation industry can be well described as a combination of success, failure, hiccups, trouble, and amalgamation.

With Star Air starting to spread its wings to newer destinations and launching flights across more city pairings, the regional airline is venturing into the mainstream routes in a calm, cool, and steadfast manner rather than just launching flights left right, and center.


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