A new airline launching direct flights on routes currently unserved to the market is planning on using Stansted Airport as a hub for travel into Europe.
POP, a low cost airline that hopes to start flying toward the backend of 2016, will fly from Stansted to Amritsar (Punjab) and Ahmedabad (Gujarat).
Speaking to City A.M. POP’s chairman Navdip Singh Judge, better known as Nino, said that Stansted was for a number of reasons, including possible connections to other low cost carriers.
“Stansted has great connections with low cost carriers so we can come in on a low cost agenda.
“We want to use it as a hub to the effect that we are already in talks with other low cost carriers, so travellers could fly onto other European cities.”
POP is not the only low cost carrier that has taken on longer routes. Norwegian and Wow Air have offered cheaper flights to the US, but POP would be the first to India.
Nino hopes that passengers on those low cost flights could also be added to a “low cost network” that links the Americas, UK and India.
But if all goes to plan the company, which aims to give 51 per cent of net profit away to charities in the UK and India, will launch flights going westward to Toronto and Newark as “there is a huge Asian market that flies into those areas both ways”.
Before that, if successful POP will start daily flights do daily flights with the help of a second aircraft. After a year, it hopes to send customers to Goa and Kolkata. Then, “if load factors and yield are favourable we’ll do daily flights and keep testing the market”.
But before it gets up in the air, the airline is aiming to raise £5m through crowdfunding.
“Raising capital in this way is efficient and the least equity consuming way, but also allows customers to be aligned with us and be rewarded for supporting us initially,” Nino adds.