In a bid to cut costs, the debt-ridden Jet Airways is revamping its present set of inflight services.
As a part of this, the full-service carrier has introduced two more fare categories under its Economy class — Saver and Classic. However, the airline has decided to do away with complimentary meals for economy class travellers on its domestic route. Starting from December 21, 2018, passengers travelling in economy class and who have booked Light/Deal/Saver/Classic fares for travel from January 7, 2019 will have to buy meals from the airline’s onboard food service JetBistro (payable by their debit or credit card). This move reminds us of the airline’s similar move in 2007/2008, when it introduced a buy-on-board format, only to discontinue it later down the line.
This move comes at a time when the airline is battling a major financial crisis, with mounting debts and delayed salaries among employees. The airline has adopted many measures to cut costs including the controversial suspension of lounge access for its top tier frequent flyers in economy class as well as the cancelling of a few of its Gulf routes. To add to its woes, recently, 14 flights got cancelled after pilots reported sick. While market speculation is that the pilots reported sick due to non-payment of salaries, the airline clarified that the flights were cancelled for operational purposes.
For guests travelling in economy ‘Flex’ fare option and all fare options in Première class can still avail the complimentary meal under the remodeled range of “Fare Choices”. International economy class passengers remain unaffected by this move.
Raj Sivakumar, Senior Vice President, Worldwide Sales and Distribution, Jet Airways, said, “Our expanded range of fare and meal choices are in sync with emerging consumer feedback which clearly reflects that an increasing number of guests want the flexibility of enjoying competitive fares with the option to buy meals that are best suited to their taste.” jetairways.com