SpiceJet, which was the most aggressive in pursuing the affordable airfare plan called UDAN, today started its services under the scheme.

The airline started flights on the Mumbai-Porbandar route with at Rs 2,250 including all taxes and levies, while the fare on the Mumbai-Kandla and Kandla-Mumbai routes would be Rs 2,500.

The fourth and last flight unveiled today, Porbandar-Mumbai, would be priced at Rs 3,099.

The UDAN or Regional Connectivity Scheme scheme is meant to give a fillip to air travel to smaller cities and towns and create a habit of travelling by air among sections of the population who are not used to it.

Airlines were asked by the government to specify how much subsidy they wanted per passenger to offer these services. The one requiring the lowest subsidy was given the contract under the scheme.

“SpiceJet is the only airline which hasn’t sought subsidy or viability gap funding under this scheme,” the company said.

SpiceJet won six proposals and eleven routes under the first phase of the Regional Connectivity Scheme. Out of the six proposals, four will cater to unserved markets of Adampur, Kandla, Puducherry and Jaisalmer whereas two will be for underserved markets of Porbandar and Kanpur.

SpiceJet’s Q-400 aircraft – SG 2873, operating on the Mumbai-Porbandar route, will depart from Mumbai for Porbandar at 09.30 AM, whereas SG 2874 will be operational on the Porbandar-Mumbai route departing at 11.05 am.

However, the return Porbandar-Mumbai fight will be a regular flight.

The airline will also be operating a daily direct flight on the Mumbai-Kandla route departing from Mumbai at 1.05 pm, whereas the flight on the Kandla-Mumbai route will depart at 3.10 pm.

The flights will start from 10 July.

Chairman and managing director Ajay Singh said his company will connect many more small towns and cities in times to come.

SpiceJet is one of India’s largest carriers with a fleet of 19 Bombardier Q400 planes, which can seat 78 passengers each, and 33 Boeing 737s.

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