Jet Airways Revival Hearing Planned For January 25th

Jet Airways’ revival hearing before the bankruptcy court is planned for January 25th. The hearing will clear the way for the new owners to take control of Jet Airways and begin the task of restarting the carrier. The hearing could also clarify the status of Jet’s domestic and international slots.

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Jet Airways could return to the skies by the summer if the hearing goes well. Photo: Getty Images

Final hurdle

While Jet Airways’ creditors have accepted the resolution plan offered by the Kalrock-Jalan consortium, it still requires approval from the bankruptcy court, the NCLT (National Company Law Tribunal).

According to the Times of India, the NCLT has planned a hearing for January 25th to hear objections and approve the revival plan. One creditor, Punjab National Bank, has challenged the revival process. Representatives from the Aviation Ministry and regulators DGCA will also be present at the hearing. 

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Jet Airways requires approval from the NCLT before formally being revived. Photo: Getty Images

A few important must be answered before Jet can return to the skies. The first will be what is the status of Jet Airways’ historical domestic slots. These slots have been operated by competing domestic airlines since April 2019. The government could clarify the status of these slots at this hearing. Officials from the Aviation Ministry have previously said Jet could get back some slots depending on its fleet size and operations, according to Business Standard.

International slots are a bit more complicated. Jet Airways’ valuable Heathrow slots have returned to Etihad, while its Amsterdam hub has been sold to KLM. However, the status of slots at airports like Singapore, Hong Kong, and Toronto remain in question.

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Restarting

Assuming all goes well at the hearing, at Jet Airways is formally revived, the new owners will start planning a restart of operations. The airline hopes to start flying again by Summer 2021 to a handful of domestic destinations. Mumbai and Bangalore will remain the main hubs for Jet Airways 2.0 as well.

Jet also wants to start operations to a handful of Tier 2 and 3 cities across India. These routes will likely be covered under the government’s UDAN program and expand Jet’s reach to non-metro markets. Additionally, the new Jet Airways hopes to jump on the trend of cargo demand by starting its own dedicated freighter fleet.

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Jet Airways hopes to restart flights this summer, subject to all approvals. Photo: Getty Images

To restart operations, the airline is considering leasing a fleet of narrowbodies to supplement the remaining 12 aircraft in its fleet. As a previous 737 operator, we can expect Jet to continue using this aircraft in the future.

Will it work?

One important point being made is that Jet Airways will return as a full-service carrier and not as a scaled-back budget airline. Considering India is a notoriously price-sensitive market and home to two full-service airlines (Air India and Vistara) could find itself struggling. India has proven to be a low-cost market, so could Jet Airways buck this trend on its second try?

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Full-service airlines have struggled to gain market share in India. Photo: Getty Images

What do you think about Jet Airways’ revival plans? Would you fly with them in the future? Let us know in the comments!


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