By Sanjay Thapa Jeet
Ukraine International Airlines (UIA) became one of the first Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) nations to launch the first non-stop, scheduled flight between New Delhi and Kiev, on May 1. With a frequency of four flights per week, this initiative is Ukraine’s attempt to attract Indian flyers, primarily tourists and students.
“Currently, we can observe the UIA active geography extension in the West and restrained growth in the East. The launch of scheduled flights to Delhi will help balance our network and improve on Ukraine’s image as a transit country,” Evgeniya Satska, UIA communications director, said in a statement.
The international carrier is expected to tap into the rapidly rising Central Asia and Europe markets, by offering more connecting flights that will connect several major cities across the two continents. UIA was founded in 1992, and currently helps connect Ukraine with over 50 destinations in Europe, Asia, America, Africa, Middle East and other CIS countries.
“We are working on bilateral relationship between SpiceJet ans Air India” UIA’s VP of sales, Anton Mattis said.UIA was founded in 1992, and currently helps connect Ukraine with over 50 destinations in Europe, Asia, America, Africa, Middle East and other CIS countries. Credit: Ukraine International Airlines
The airline also provides connections via its international flight partners, thereby covering almost 3,000 other destinations worldwide. Commenting on the issue of flying over Russia’s no fly zones, Mattis said, “there was no such apprehensions as we have obtained all necessary clearances from ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation).”
UIA is currently offering visa on arrival for tourists. The airline has set its one-way economy class fare at $220, and its luxury class fare at $1,600. UIA new flights will provide both India and Ukraine with the perfect opportunity to tap into the ever-growing tourism sector.
“The launch of the scheduled flights to Delhi from Kiev will improve Ukraine’s image as a transit country,” Satska added. “We further plan to improve our linkages in India and will be in talks with SpiceJet, and other regional airlines to increase our reach beyond Delhi to Kolkatta, Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore.”
“Ukraine is a beautiful country with a number of sight seeing destinations that is sure to be a major tourist attraction for Indian visitors and similarly, India provides its vast history and cultural spectrum for exploration and provides very competitive rates,” said Mattis.
UIA currently operates 42 aircraft, including 29 medium haul 737 Boeing NG aircraft. At present, the average age of UIA’s fleet of aircraft is 11.3 years. UIA rapidly expanded in the wake of its former competitor Aerosvit airlines’s demise. Although the two airlines once, almost equally dominated the market, after Aerosvit went bankrupt, UIA raced to fill the void, going on to become a much-sought after international airline.
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