In The Last 3 Days Alone 15 Flights Of Maldivian Was Operated By Manta Air And Villa Air FlyMe
Every year towards the busy season's air travel frequency increases immensely for all carriers in the Maldives.
Maldivian as the national carrier of Maldives operates to all airports in the Maldives aside from Dhaalu Airport and Maamigili Airport.
In 2019 prior to the pandemic Maldivian operated over 10,000 flights from base Velana International airport to various airports within the country.
In the previous year itself through the pandemic Maldivian operated more flights than Manta Air and Villa Air Flyme combined.
As the tourism industry was recovering at a significant pace with 1.3 million tourists expected by year-end for 2021; local airliners began preparation for the season by mid-year.
In the last few days, some passengers may have noticed they were not traveling on the same airline as they were supposed to.
The previous 3 days alone, 15 flights of national carrier Maldivian were operated by Manta Air and Villa Air FlyMe.
These flights were chattered by the national carrier supposedly due to the unavailability by the carrier itself to cater these flights.
This raises eyebrows as to why Maldivian is unable to operate these flights as the largest domestic airliner with a fleet consisting of 10 De Havilland Dash-8 200/300’s.
At peak the carrier was operating more than 40 flights on a single day.
At times due to unforeseen operational matters, airlines may not be able to cater their flights and a charter maybe required however in recent years there was never a time such a significant amount of flights were chartered by Maldivian.
In this week Manta Air and Villa Air operated flights to Hanimaadhoo, Maafaru, Ifuru, Kaadedhdhoo, Kadhdhoo, Maavarulu, Fuvahmulah, and Gan carrying passengers for Maldivian.
Chartering flights by airlines would be costly as charter flights are priced accordingly for a flight with full passenger load regardless of the actual number of seats occupied.
Unavailability to cater flights and having to charter from private airlines would result in a loss in revenue for Maldivian in a crucial period where the airline supposed to maximize revenue especially after the financial impact of the pandemic.
In the case of Maldivian although it is a loss for the national carrier; operating these flights for Maldivian would be lucrative to the private airlines.