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Aeroflot – the return of the Russian Airlines

Monday, 12th of November 2018

Many world famous international airlines have agreed to launch their airways in Sri Lanka. In line with this, after seven years of a long pause, the Aeroflot Russian Airlines re- launched their regular non-stop flights to Colombo starting from October 28th this year. Five weekly flights have been arranged to operate on an Airbus A330 aircraft under the winter schedule effective from 28th October through 30th of March 2019.

What is Aeroflot?

PJSC Aeroflot Russian Airlines which is commonly known as the ‘Aeroflot’ is the largest airline of the Russian Federation. Being one of the oldest airlines in the world, Aeroflot has a history that could be traced back to the year 1923. While it was the first Russian airline company to join the International Air Transport Association (IATA) in 1989, the Russian government currently owns 51 percent of the shares and provides employment for more than 30,000 individuals. Also, Aeroflot has one of the youngest fleets in the world. It comprises 248 aircraft including modern Airbus A320-family, A330, Boeing 737, Boeing 777 and Sukhoi Superjet 100 airliners. Aeroflot is the first airline to use jets for aviation and their current schedule operates flights to 146 destinations in 52 countries.

Aeroflot Airlines in Sri Lanka

Renewing its services in Sri Lanka after seven years, Aeroflot has arranged flights to depart from Sheremetyevo Airport on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 22:05, and to arrive in Colombo at 09:05 in local time. In relevance to this, Sri Lankan government is planning to reopen several domestic airways including airways in Palaly, Trincomalee and Batticaloa where as Koggala and Sigiriya areas are expected to open new airways.

Profits and benefits

This act of thought by Aeroflot benefits Sri Lankan airline services in plenty of ways. With this relaunch, the government expects a noticeable development in the number of tourists and business travels from Russia to Sri Lanka. Moreover, for passengers, it will save the trouble of waiting for transits. Disregarding the research report by the International Air Transport Association, stating that it might put the Russian airways in a disadvantageous position, Aeroflot made their move. According to the survey, IATA implies that the cost for jet fuel in Sri Lankan airports will put international airways at a loss. Illustrating on the fact, IATA points out the jet fuel in Sri Lanka cost nearly 50 percent more when compared with the fuel costs of Thailand and Singapore. With the reestablishment of Aeroflot in Sri Lanka several other major international airways, including Vistara Airlines of India and Edelweiss Air of Switzerland are planning to extend their partnership all the way to Sri Lanka within next two months. This includes the KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, which is one of the oldest airlines of the world.

Thishana M. Rajanayake

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