AirAsia India

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AirAsia India
AirAsia New Logo.svg
IATA ICAO Callsign
Founded 28 March 2013 (2013-03-28)
Commenced operations 12 June 2014 (2014-06-12)
Hubs Kempegowda International Airport (Bengaluru)
Secondary hubs Indira Gandhi International Airport (Delhi)
Frequent-flyer program BIG
Fleet size 5
Destinations 10
Company slogan Now Everyone Can Fly
Headquarters Chennai, India[1]
Key people

AirAsia India[2] is an Indo-Malaysian low cost carrier headquartered in Chennai, India.[1][3] The airline is a joint venture with Air Asia Berhad holding 49% of the airline, Tata Sons holding 40.06% and Telestra Tradeplace having the remaining 10% in the airline. The joint venture would also mark Tata's return to aviation industry after 60 years.[4][5] Air Asia India commenced operations on 12 June 2014 with Bangalore as its primary hub.[6] AirAsia is the first foreign airline to set up a subsidiary in India.[7]


The origins of the airline can be tracked back to October 2012, when AirAsia was keen to open operations based out of India provided the aviation environment and tax structure were conducive and friendly for low-cost airline operations. With the Indian government allowing a foreign direct investment of up to 49%, in February 2013, AirAsia applied to the Indian Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) to seek approval for commencing its operations in India.[8] AirAsia announced that it would establish a joint venture with Tata Sons and Telestra Tradeplace. Tata sons would represent the airline with two non-executive directors in the airline's board. The airliner planned to operate with the world's lowest unit cost of 1.25 (1.9¢ US)/available seat kilometre and a passenger break-even load factor of 52%. It also planned to hedge 100% of its fuel requirements for the first three years and to achieve an aircraft turnaround time of 25 minutes.[9]

AirAsia initially planned to begin operations to various tier 2 and tier 3 cities with Chennai International Airport as its main operating base[10] but later shifted its base to Bengaluru, operating its first flight from Bengaluru to Goa.[11] The introduction of AirAsia was expected to cause another price war, ultimately leading to an increase in air traffic and some consolidation in the Indian aviation sector.[12]

AirAsia initially invested an amount of US$50 million in the airline. In preparation for its operations in India, AirAsia struck deals with online and offline travel agents throughout the country. Previously, limited distribution of sales had affected the airline's performance in India and AirAsia wanted to avoid that with its Indian subsidiary by all means.[13] On 3 March 2013, the FIPB officially permitted AirAsia to rent/lease aircraft and to carry cargo on its scheduled flights. The airline then applied for a permission to schedule aircraft and transport passengers,[14] which the FIPB accepted on 6 March.[15] Less than two months after AirAsia announced its plans to start an airline in India, the joint venture was established on 28 March 2013 as AirAsia (India) Pvt. Ltd.[16] In April, the airline started recruiting candidates for their cabin crew, and allowed captains and first officers to apply online for an interview in Bengaluru.[17]

As the final procedure to obtain Air Operator Permit, a proving flight was conducted on 1 and 2 May 2014 flying from Chennai to Kochi, Bangalore and Kolkata.[18] On 8 May 2014, the DGCA issued AirAsia India an Air Operator Permit.[19] On 30 May 2014, AirAsia India announced its maiden flight from Bengaluru to Goa; the service started on 12 June 2014.[20] In June 2015 the airline made Delhi-Indira Gandhi International Airport its secondary hub for North Indian operations.[21]

In August 2015, Tata Sons the major Indian shareholder increased its stake to 40.06% from 30% earlier by injecting fresh equity while Telestra's share reduced to 10% from 20% earlier.[22] It was also reported that Tata group may increase their stake further to 48%.[23]


Prior to the airline's formation, Tony Fernandes announced that he would like Ratan Tata to be the chairman of the airline, however the latter refused, though he later consented to being the Chief Advisor to the AirAsia India management board.[24][25] On 15 May 2013, AirAsia India appointed management consultant Mittu Chandilya as CEO.[26] A month later, on 17 June, S. Ramadorai, the Non-Executive Vice-Chairman of the Indian software firm Tata Consultancy Services, was appointed as the Chairman of the airline.[27]


AirAsia India currently operates in following destinations in India.[28]

Country (State) City Airport Begin End Ref
India (Andhra Pradesh) Visakhapatnam Visakhapatnam Airport 18 June 2015 present [29]
India (Assam) Guwahati Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport 21 May 2015 present [30]
India (Chandigarh) Chandigarh Chandigarh Airport 5 September 2014 present [31]
India (Delhi) Delhi Indira Gandhi International AirportHub 21 May 2015 present [30]
India (Goa) Goa Goa International Airport 12 June 2014 present [20]
India (Karnataka) Bengaluru Kempegowda International AirportHub 12 June 2014 present [20]
India (Kerala) Kochi Cochin International Airport 20 June 2014 present [32]
India (Maharastra) Pune Pune Airport 18 December 2014 present [33]
India (Manipur) Imphal Imphal International Airport 25 June 2015 present [34]
India (Rajasthan) Jaipur Jaipur International Airport 5 September 2014 present [31]
India (Tamil Nadu) Chennai Chennai International Airport 19 June 2014 2 April 2015 [35]


The airline's first Airbus A320-200 was delivered from the Airbus factory in Toulouse, France to Chennai International Airport on 22 March 2014. They have received in-principle approval to import 10 A320-200 aircraft.[36][37] AirAsia India on 21 March 2015 unveiled its fourth aircraft with a livery dedicated to JRD Tata and the aircraft was christened as The Pioneer.[38]

AirAsia India fleet
Aircraft In service Orders Options Passengers
Airbus A320-200 5 1 180 sixth aircraft to join fleet in October 2015.[39]
Total 5 1


  1. ^ a b "AirAsia India shifts base to Bengaluru from Chennai". Times of India. Retrieved 20 May 2014. 
  2. ^ "AirAsia incorporates company for Indian venture". The Times of India (New Delhi). Press Trust of India. 31 March 2013. Retrieved 31 March 2013. 
  3. ^ Kurlantzick, Joshua (23 December 2007). "Does Low Cost Mean High Risk?". The New York Times. Retrieved 28 April 2010. 
  4. ^ "AirAsia to tie up with Tata Sons for new airline in India". Times of India. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  5. ^ "Tata Sons, Telestra Tradeplace and Air Asia to form Air Asia India". Economic Times (Press release). 20 February 2013. 
  6. ^ "AirAsia India Tickets on Sale From Today —". Retrieved 30 May 2014. 
  7. ^ "FIPB to take up AirAsia India entry proposal on March 6". The Hindu Business Line. Retrieved 22 February 2013. 
  8. ^ "AirAsia India to take to the skies in Q4". MCIL Multimedia Sdn Bhd. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  9. ^ "Passengers' perceptions of low cost airlines and full service carriers". Cranfield University. 2005. 
  10. ^ "Tatas plan return flight with AirAsia on board". NDTV Profit. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  11. ^ "AirAsia India launches and shifts base to Bengaluru". ANNA Aero. 18 June 2014. Retrieved 5 September 2014. 
  12. ^ "AirAsia's India foray good news; see more competition: KPMG". CNBC. Retrieved 21 February 2013. 
  13. ^ "Air Asia to make strong sales pitch, ties up with portals, agents". Business Standard. Retrieved 23 February 2013. 
  14. ^ "Air Asia, Tata Group JV seeks permission for aircraft leasing". The Indian Express. Retrieved 3 March 2013. 
  15. ^ "AirAsia's India investment plan gets FIPB nod". Reuters India. Retrieved 6 March 2013. 
  16. ^ "AirAsia incorporates Indian venture; files all papers with MCA". The Economic Times. Retrieved 3 April 2013. 
  17. ^ "AirAsia recruitment drive for India gets overwhelming response". The Economic Times. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  18. ^ "AirAsia India Proving Flights: Day 2". The Flying Engineer. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  19. ^ "AirAsia India gets approval to fly". BBC. 8 May 2014. Retrieved 21 May 2014. 
  20. ^ a b c "AirAsia India announces maiden flight from Bangalore to Goa for Rs 990". IBNLive. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  21. ^ "AirAsia looking for a third hub after Delhi". Economic Times. 21 May 2015. 
  22. ^ "ATata Sons increase AirAsia India stake to 41%". The Economic Times. Retrieved 18 August 2015. 
  23. ^ "tata-group-ramps-up-stake-in-airasia-india". Ch-aviation. 18 August 2015. 
  24. ^ "AirAsia wants Ratan Tata to head JV". The Economic Times. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  25. ^ "Ratan Tata to be the chief advisor to AirAsia India". timesofindia-economictimes. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  26. ^ "Singapore based Mittu Chandilya appointed CEO of Air Asia India". timesofindia-economictimes. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  27. ^ "AirAsia India appoints TCS' S Ramadorai as Chairman". timesofindia-economictimes. Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  28. ^ "Destinantions". 
  29. ^ "AirAsia India to start Bangalore-Visakhapatnam service from 18 June 2015". AirAsia India. 
  30. ^ a b "AirAsia India set to launch flights from New Delhi". Business Standard. 20 April 2015. Retrieved 20 April 2015. 
  31. ^ a b "Air Asia adds Jaipur and Chandigarh". AirAsia. 24 July 2014. 
  32. ^ "Air Asia announces Kochi flights". NDTV. 17 June 2014. 
  33. ^ "Airasia India launches services to Pune". The New Indian Express. 18 December 2014. 
  34. ^ "AirAsia Adds Another New Route, Fares Start At Rs. 1/Km". NDTV Profit. 
  35. ^ "Losses force Air Asia to terminate its first route". 2 April 2015. Retrieved 3 April 2015. 
  36. ^ "Air Asia's 1st Airbus A320 from France arrives in Chennai". CNBC-TV18. 22 March 2014. 
  37. ^ "Air Asia India’s first Airbus A320 arrives in Chennai". The Hindu. 22 March 2014. 
  38. ^ "AirAsia India Unveils Aircraft With JRD Tata Livery". Retrieved 2 July 2015. 
  39. ^ "As a Tata company, we have done things the ethical way, says AirAsia MD & CEO Mittu Chandilya". Retrieved 28 August 2015. 

External links[edit]

Official website