Experience is our Key Proposition One on one with Jagdish Bhojwani, General Manager - India, SilkAir • Kritika Gupta
Current scena rio & future plans
SilkAir is a full service airline that operates flights within a 6.5 hour radius from Singapore. It compliments its parent company, Singapore Airlines, by offering regional connections via the Singapore hub. SilkAir currently operates more than 350 flights weekly to 49 destinations in 12 countries. SilkAir & Singapore Airlines together offer connections to our customers to over 90 destinations. Currently, our major traffic is connecting customers from and to Singapore Airlines’ network connecting at SIN from long-haul flights such as those from UK, USA and South West Pacific. We are seeing good growth in the top end of the Intra-Asia market, where an increasing number of travellers in Asia prefer to fly in comfort and safety even on short-haul flights. Being amongst the leading regional airlines in the world, we have created a benchmark in the sector and have consistently represented the best that an airline can offer in terms of in-flight and overall service standards.
We have been the pioneers to venture into diverse, secondary destinations in Asia, some of which are still relatively untouched by mass tourism. As an Airline focused on connecting consumers with Asia’s newest frontiers, SilkAir has always looked to cater to these changing travel patterns, offering customers access to new and exotic destinations across Asia. Our goal is to continue to develop our network further, offering new destinations and an unmatchable range of long haul connections for international travellers. In 2014, we added four destinations to our network –– Kalibo, Mandalay, Hangzhou and Denpasar, and most recently we commenced operations to Cairns in Australia in May 2015. Moving forward, SilkAir will continue to focus on expanding its networks, especially to unique destinations in key markets such as China, Indonesia and Philippines.
Current sit uation of the Aviation industry
The Indian market is slowly expanding with young travelers wanting to take more than one international vacation a year. With the varied accommodation and travel offers; we have seen Indian travelers benefit from long haul travel by visiting two countries in one trip. Technology has also changed the booking pace and travelers know where they can find the best deals on their fingertips. In addition, the trend we have observed over the last few years is an increased understanding of value for money in both business and leisure travel.
Issues faced by aviation ind ustry
Our main challenges remain similar to what the other airlines face; with regard to fuel cost and high taxes. It is encouraging to see strong efforts being taken by the Indian Government to develop the Indian civil aviation sector. The Government is enhancing tourism opportunities to and from India by creating a conducive environment with infrastructure development. The idea to promote and develop key hubs in India will yield long-term benefits to India’s economy. • With improved entry and exit facilities combined with efficient immigration systems and processes, passengers’ experience at airports has been better • Hotel capacity, budget accommodation, better pricing and better customer friendly facilities for commuting locally is slowly making India a more popular tourist destination.
offers to atract more travellers
In February last year, we launched our latest brand campaign called ‘A Joy to Fly’. The message we want to bring across through this rejuvenated brand campaign is that we want our customers to enjoy all the benefits of our full-service carrier, as the regional wing of Singapore Airlines; for passengers to sit back and enjoy the attentive service for a complete SilkAir Experience en-route to the 49 leisure, business and exotic destinations in 12 countries that we serve. Being amongst the leading regional airlines in the world, that is Asia’s most awarded regional airline, we have created a benchmark in the sector and have consistently represented the best that an airline can offer in terms of in-flight and overall service standards. We constantly re-evaluate all aspects of our product and services, exploring new ideas and possibilities and trying to stay relevant to the changing times. For instance, we introduced our latest wireless inflight entertainment, SilkAir Studio, in May last year, giving passengers a convenient option to wirelessly stream movie, TV and audio content directly to their personal devices, for their enhanced enjoyment during the flight.
views on trend of ‘Sale’
We do not believe in the concept of predatory pricing to attract customers. Today, customers are well aware of the facilities that they can avail at a cost. Price is a key factor that determines the choice made by the customer however, for SilkAir, experience is our key proposition. Hence, we strive to create a balance and offer the best services to our customers at a judicious price point, with a ‘value-for-money’ fare offering.