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Proper Mechanism In Place To Minimise Customer Inconvenience: SpiceJet

India's second-largest low fare airline SpiceJet Ltd has taken a slew of measures to minimise flight disruptions and cancellations arising due to fog during the winter season

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India's second-largest low fare airline SpiceJet Ltd has taken a slew of measures to minimise flight disruptions and cancellations arising due to fog during the winter season.

The airline has altered its flight schedule for the fog prone areas like Varanasi, Chandigarh, Amritsar, thereby looking at early departures for night flights and day time departures for morning flights, it said adding the schedule changes will stand effective from today till January 31 next year to ensure smooth operations during the fog period.

"Disruptions depend on the severity of fog and natural conditions as these can hardly be controlled, hence we are looking forward to implementing a well-secured plan so as to avoid any kind of compromise in customer convenience," said G P Gupta, chief administrative officer and accountable manager, SpiceJet.

"Managing morning departures and arrivals and handling passengers in case of disruptions are critical and pose to be a huge challenge for us during the fog period hence we have thoughtfully rolled out several proactive measures to moderate the impact of such contingencies and upholding customer safety as paramount," he added.

In an interview with BW | Businessworld, Gupta shares the airline's plan to eliminate customer inconvenience in the likelihood of flight disruptions and cancellations on account of fog. Edited excerpts

Strategy for fog season
The airline is making full preparations operationally. We are taking all steps to ensure that our pilots are fully trained to undertake flights in the fog season.

Additionally all our B-737 airplanes are being inspected to make them fully compliant to the requirements of the fog season. We have altered our flight schedule for the fog prone areas like North India, thereby looking at early departures for night flights and day time departures for morning flights. The schedule changes will stand effective from 15 December 2015 to 31 January 2016 to ensure smooth operations during the fog period.

In the event of flight disruptions, the airline has prepared itself to accommodate its passengers and crew members by tying up with several hotels. Catering arrangements have also been made so that the airline has a good supply of food (snacks) in case of contingencies during the fog period.

On passenger load factor
We will carry on with our dynamic fare policy that encourages early bookings like with discounts and special fares. Enhance travel partner network. Providing customer enhanced flying experience.

On Competition Commission of India penalty
We are studying the order and will likely challenge it.

On new aviation policy
The revised draft policy released by the government is "pretty progressive". The focus on regional connectivity is good for domestic aviation sector. It has covered a lot of ground like attempt is being made to reduce taxes.

Some procedural problems of aviation sectors are also being addressed. SpiceJet has submitted its suggestions on the draft policy and certain issues such as high tax on ATF (Air Turbine Fuel).

On future plans
In FY 2016 people can expect more aircraft and more destinations on SpiceJet's network. Large aircraft orders will also be placed in FY 2016.


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