Gurgaon, India - Indian budget carrier IndiGo may have to delay its overseas expansion plans due to the delivery delays of its Airbus A321neos.
IndiGo expects a slowdown in A321neo deliveries because of some production interruptions at the Airbus's Hamburg plant where the A321neos are being built.
The airline said the situation is temporary and deliveries are expected to return to its normal cycle within the next three to six months.
IndiGo currently has seven Airbus A321neo in service. 143 more are waiting to be delivered to the Indian low-cost over time.
The A321neo is key to IndiGo’s plans to extend its operations to overseas destinations.
The aircraft has a longer flight range and can carry more passengers (222) than the other A320 Family jets (180-188). Its extended flight range, increased seating capacity and lower operating cost per seat makes the A321neo an ideal choice for airlines on the medium-haul international routes.
The delivery delays could slightly push back Indian operator's overseas expansion plans for its route network, but the airline may proceed short-term aircraft leasing.
IndiGo needs to receive four Airbus A321neo a month to keep up with its growth plans.
IndiGo took over some profitable international routes of the bankrupt Jet Airways. The company aims to re-launch these routes under its own brand soon with its A321neos.
The carrier will take delivery of eight more Airbus A321neo on lease from Dublin-based Chinese lessor CDB Aviation by the end of this year. Another 25 copies are expected to arrive by March 2020.
With the arrival of these planes, IndiGo plans to launch flights in 2020 to Myanmar, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, and China.
IndiGo currently flies to several international destinations including Kuwait, the Maldives, Bangladesh, Thailand, and the United Arab Emirates.