New Delhi: India’s largest airline IndiGo has entered the long-haul market by ordering 30 wide-body aircraft. The airline has placed an order of 30 Airbus A350-900 aircraft. The aircraft will be powered by Rolls Royce’s Trent XWB engines.

Established in 2006, IndiGo has so far been a low-cost carrier operating a fleet of narrow-body aircraft which can seat around 222 passengers. With this order, IndiGo will also join the wide-body player category which so far included Air India and Vistara.

Currently, IndiGo operates over 360 aircraft. Last year, in June 2023, IndiGo placed an order of 500 aircraft with Airbus at the Paris air show. Currently, the airline has a total orderbook of about 1,000 aircraft that includes Airbus 320, 321 and 321XLRs.

Mint had reported in November that IndiGo is in talks with aircraft makers to buy up to 20 wide-body aircraft as it seeks to expand its international operations, three people familiar with the matter said

This order by IndiGo will come as a shot in the arm for the government, which has been asking airlines to order wide-body aircraft and connect destinations in Europe and the Americas with India directly.

The government’s plan is to reduce dependence on foreign airlines, which connect these destinations through their hubs in the Middle East and Southeast Asia.

“It is important for me to give every avenue possible to my customer that means certainly look at international airlines and increasing their footprint into India… but also look at our domestic flag carriers growing their footprint internationally, which is why I have been stressing to our airlines that we need to induct greater wide-body aircraft so that we can cross the seven seas and supplant our footing and make our mark there,” civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia had told Mint in an earlier interview.

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Published: 25 Apr 2024, 05:17 PM IST

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