Indian low cost carrier (LCC) Spicejet has opened reservations for flights to Hong Kong from Delhi. The flights are open for sale effective 22nd of November 2018 and operate as per below timings.
SG 31 DEL 2245 – 0640+1 HKG
SG 32 HKG 0740 – 1050 DEL
The airline had attempted a Blue Oceans strategy in 2013 and part of it had launched services to Guangzhou from Delhi in February 2013. The flights which operated 4x weekly at its peak were pulled out by March 2014.
Hong Kong Airport (IATA: HKG) is one of the most congested airports with limited slots on offer and for an airline to obtain these peak slots is an achievement. Air India has been attempting to get slots at Hong Kong to connect the city to Mumbai directly and has been unable to get slots of preference. IATA guidelines help new carriers get priority over existing operators at an airport for slot distribution. Slots can also be leased or purchased at select airports worldwide.
Delhi – Hong Kong is a competitive route with Air India, Jet Airways and Cathay Pacific operating the route with wide-body aircraft. Oil was climbing in 2013 and so it is right now but Spicejet will benefit from Delhi – Hong Kong being a bigger market than Guangzhou along with the flight being operated by the B737 MAX8 which promises fuel savings of 15% over the existing B737-800NG fleet. The airline currently has 36 B737 and 22 Q400 aircraft in its fleet along with 1 B737 freighter. The airline has 155 B737 MAX8 aircraft on firm order with 50 options with deliveries which were to start in August but delayed due to supply chain issues at Boeing.
As the airline takes delivery of the MAX in quick succession, it is looking for selective international expansion and retiring some of the older aircraft starting with those without Boeing Sky Interiors.