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SriLankan Airlines prioritize boosting direct services & frequencies for Indian passengers

Sri Lanka is ramping up its efforts to attract Indian travelers with a series of B2B roadshows and networking evenings that took take place in Indore, Vadodara, and Surat on June 10th, 12th, and 14th, 2024. The primary objective is to draw more tourists from Madhya Pradesh and Gujarat and to position Sri Lanka as a year-round destination for all types of travelers. Both Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau (SLTPB) and the Sri Lanka Convention Bureau (SLCB) have come together to host 3-city roadshow, supported by the Sri Lanka Consulate General in Mumbai, Sri Lankan Airlines and tour associations.

Sharing inputs on how SriLankan Airlines is penning the growth story, being Sri Lanka’s national carrier, Richard Nuttall, CEO at SriLankan Airlines, mentions “Nearly all our Indian routes continue to perform reasonably well, with high yields and an average load factor of about 74 percent. We hope to see these numbers improve as we increase our frequencies and expand our fleet to 25 aircraft by the end of this year.”

He further added, “Our network includes direct and codeshare flights to 114 destinations across 62 countries, with direct services to nine cities in India. Our priority is to increase flight frequencies on existing routes once our fleet is strengthened later this year. Routes such as Delhi, Mumbai, and Chennai typically generate higher yields due to a higher share of business traffic to and from Sri Lanka.”About India, Nuttall added that India is very important where current priority is to enhance direct services and connections for Indian passengers travelling on existing routes. New destinations will be introduced in time with the availability of new aircraft.

About India, Nuttall added that India is very important where current priority is to enhance direct services and connections for Indian passengers travelling on existing routes. New destinations will be introduced in time with the availability of new aircraft.

Currently, SriLankan Airlines has 18 codeshare partnerships with other airlines, including Air India. “We are also in discussions with several prominent Middle Eastern and South Asian carriers for new codeshare partnerships”, revealed Nuttall. With regards to strategy for the Indian trade market, he said that agents in India have access to discounted fares, free date changes, and incentives on flown segments through our New Distribution Capability (NDC) platform. Besides, SriLankan Airlines also run periodic promotions, webinars and FAM tours for agents.

“Our main focus is to offer passengers a truly authentic ‘Sri Lankan’ experience, from the onboard food to the hospitality. Additionally, we are digitalizing the airport experience. We were the first in the region to introduce self-check-in kiosks and a bag drop facility for international travel. Soon, we will extend our mobile app services to include digital check-in and boarding”, added Nuttall. “SriLankan Airlines will also soon be launching a new marketing campaign targeting India.”

On the sustainability roadmap, Nuttall added, “We prioritize reducing our carbon footprint with industry-leading practices in fuel efficiency, carbon emission monitoring, and landfill waste reduction through our ‘Mathaka’ upcycling project. Additionally, we actively participate in restoring and preserving Sri Lanka’s mangrove forests and conserving seagrass habitats.”

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