Mumbai - The Indian low-cost carrier Jet Airways plans to lease out its seven ATR-72 under a wet lease agreement to TruJet to cut down on costs.
The move will result in a reduction of flights and a loss of domestic market share for Jet Airways while TruJet gains capacity in short-term without worrying about the pilot shortage.
TruJet is another regional carrier based at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad. Founded on March 14, 2013, TruJet made its first scheduled flight on July 12, 2015.
Jet Airways and TruJet have been negotiating on the issue since last year, and both sides reached an agreement in principle on a wet-lease agreement recently. Since Jet Airways is not the owner of the ATRs, getting an approval from the lessor was also needed for the sublease arrangement.
According to local sources, TruJet will take over JetAirways' ATRs from September. The turboprops will remain in TruJet’s fleet for 18-24 months until the original lease terms of the planes expire. The deal is supposed to be confirmed later this month.
Jet Airways is financially in turbulence. The company has been struggling to increase the revenue and reduce its costs. Concluding this lease agreement successfully is vital for the carrier. Jet Airways currently operates 121 aircraft including 18 ATR-72.
TruJet currently operates five ATR. Although the company was considering a fleet expansion for a while, it has been unable to expand quickly due to the pilot shortage.
The partnership between JetAirways will not be limited to the wet-lease. The operators will also share their codes. TruJet will align its network to feed Jet Airways flights.