Ahead of its merger with Air India, Vistara will not making any new aircraft orders.

Speaking to reporters, Vistara CEO Vinod Kannan said the airline – a joint venture between Indian conglomerate Tata Group and Singapore Airlines – will not make any new aircraft orders pending regulatory approval of its merger with Air India.

The India-based airline will still take on 17 aircraft currently on order by the end of 2024, bringing its fleet to 70 aircraft.

"We have not looked at any orders beyond that. There has been the announcement about the merger and integration with Air India. Once we have approval from the relevant authorities ... we will have to sit down together with Air India as a joint entity to see what we do,” Kannan said.

Previously announced last November, Vistara will be merged with fellow Tata Group carrier Air India. The merger is expected to be completed by March 2024.

International Expansion Plans

While the Vistara merger into Air India is pending, Kannan added Vistara is continuing with its international network expansion.

Since the airline's launch in 2015, the airline now operates flights to Europe, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. Its flights to 12 international destinations now makes up 30% of the airline's capacity.

"International expansion will be a focus going forward. It plays a strong role in the performance of our bottom line," Kannan said.

While with international expansion plans, Kannan did address some challenges for the airline including the inability of landing slots for more flights to markets such as Dubai and Singapore. Kannan also addressed the delay in plans to launch long-haul flights to the United States because of delays of deliveries of Boeing 787 aircraft.

Kannan added the airline will strengthen its presence in Europe where it currently operates flights with load factors between 85-90%.

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