'Air Pegasus will be airborne next month'

'Air Pegasus will be airborne next month'

Bengaluru-based Air Pegasus on Tuesday cleared the final hurdle to hit the skies with the aviation regulator sanctioning its flying permit.

The airline, which is expected to start operations in another two weeks time by flying from Bengaluru to Thiruvananthapuram twice a day and Hubbali once a day, will be the third operator after AirAsia India and Vistara to get off the blocks in the last nine months.
“We have got the Air Operators Permit (AOP). We plan to start operations in two weeks. I want to start operations by the first week of April,” Air Pegasus Managing Director Shyson Thomas told Deccan Herald.

Asked how confident he is about beginning operations in two weeks, he said that they have kept themselves ready to start operations from December last year, itself.

“We were ready. But there was delay from the DGCA side in giving clearance,” he said. After a discussion with his team, he said, the airline would launch its sales.

Named after the creature from Greek Mythology — Pegasus, a winged stallion — the airline hopes to expand to other South Indian destinations like Kochi, Chennai and Cuddappah soon.

“The market is good. We are targeting tier-2 and tier-3 cities. There are plenty of virgin routes to explore. I am confident,” Thomas said, when asked about the turbulent aviation market in the country.

The airline, promoted by Thomas and his ground handling company Decor Aviation, at present has two ATR 72-500 aircraft in its fleet and expects the third one in another two weeks.

Thomas said he is also not considering entering the North Indian market.With Air Pegasus’ entry, the South Indian civil aviation market is getting more competitive as AirAsia India, the joint venture of Malaysia-based AirAsia, Tata Sons and Telstra, is already operating from these states.

Sources said that the airline had obtained a No Objection Certificate from the Civil Aviation Ministry in 2011, which was renewed twice. In January, last year, Air Pegasus approached the DGCA for AOP.

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