By Parker Davis
Amazon Air Launches Service in India, Leases Two Aircraft to Expedite Services
Amazon has launched Amazon Air services in India. A first for the country, as to date no e-commerce company has had its own dedicated fleet operating in the country. Two Boeing 737-800 freighter aircraft will be used. Amazon has leased the two 737s from the cargo airline, Quikjet Cargo Airlines Pvt. Ltd. The aircraft will continue to be operated by the Indian cargo airline on behalf of Amazon. Additionally, the aircraft will carry the “Prime Air” branding of Amazon.
The operator was involved in trials for two months. Thereafter, on Monday, a public launch was carried out at GMR Hyderabad International Airport.
Amazon already has its own dedicated fleet comprising of 90 aircraft.
This venture into India will prove very fruitful for multiple counts. For starters, India is a huge market and by having dedicated freighters, Amazon will be able to bring down the delivery times as compared to other e-commerce competitors who rely on other logistics companies. The aircraft being used can carry 20,000 shipments, said Akhil Saxena, VP Customer Fulfilment, Amazon.
The aircraft will be used to do round trips to cities like Mumbai, New Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, etc. speeding up Amazon deliveries by a considerable margin to several important cities and nerve points.
These operations are also in tune with the city of Hyderabad being an important city for IT companies and further increases its importance.
India has several such dedicated freighter services, namely: Blue Dart Aviation, SpiceExpress, Pradhaan Air and IndiGo CarGo. However, none of these are dedicated to an e-commerce company.
Blue Dart Aviation is the aircraft freighter wing of the courier service company, is based in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. It serves 7 metropolitan Indian cities with a fleet of 6 well-maintained Boeing 757-200F, the freighter variant of the 757 aircraft, also known as the “Flying Pencil”. The company is in the process of acquiring more aircraft to increase operations.
SpiceExpress is the freighter services arm of SpiceJet, an Indian LCC. The airline uses the freighter variants of the 737 for its operations. The company surged by quite a lot during the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown, when commercial flights were grounded. SpiceExpress at one point had even wet-leased Airbus A340s from HiFly Malta for freight services.
Pradhaan Air is a new air freighter in India, currently operating a single Airbus A320-200/P2F (passenger to freighter) aircraft. The airline has 3 more similar aircraft on order.
IndiGo CarGo is the cargo division of IndiGo, the biggest airline in India. The airline kicked off its dedicated freighter services using Airbus A321-200/P2F. The LCC has 2 such aircraft in operation with two more on order.
The above only displays the tremendous growth in air cargo capacity available and the demand for the same in India.
The launch of Amazin Air further sets into concrete the fact that India is fast emerging as the most sought after and fast-growing market across multiple segments. Aviation in India has already reached pre-pandemic figures in terms of passengers carried and the graph is poised to keep gaining altitude. With the launch of Amazon Air services in the country, e-commerce patrons will have faster delivery times and logistics support chains, ancillary services, etc., will also have a positive impact, hopefully leading to employment generation.
Be what it may, Amazon Air in India is a rather exciting venture signifying progress and development whilst also being an interesting livery to be present at airports and the skies.