Vistara is aiming big. Part of their expansion plan involves widebody expansion. The first of six Boeing 787-9s for Vistara will arrive in February 2020. This new development will help Vistara grow their route network.

Boeing 787-9
Vistara will take their first 787-9 in 2020. Photo: Boeing

The first 787-9

Flightglobal reports that Vistara chief executive Leslie Thng is expecting the first 787-9 in February of 2020. This development comes on the heels of the launch of Vistara’s first international service to Singapore. Furthermore, Vistara is poised to start Bangkok service soon. Towards the west, Vistara will use Airbus A320neos to Dubai.

Vistara A320neo
All of Vistara’s current international expansion has been on narrowbodies like Airbus A320neos. Photo: Airbus

In addition to the A320neos, Vistara will also have nine former Jet Airways 737s in its fleet by the end of this month. Undoubtedly, Vistara is aiming big now that one of India’s largest and most well-known carriers no longer exists.

Where will the 787-9 fly to?

Vistara has not given many details regarding the first routes for their Boeing 787-9s. In a quote to Flightglobal, Thng highlighted the aircraft’s flexibility for routes to Europe and North Asia. These are some of the more likely candidates for Vistara’s first long-haul international service. With inadequate international service, Vistara’s long-haul services will likely help the Indian aviation market.

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787-9 range Delhi
The range of the Boeing 787-9 from New Delhi. Photo: Great Circle Mapper

Flightglobal points out Vistara’s partnerships involving Singapore Airlines, Japan Airlines, British Airways, and United Airlines. Vistara already serves Singapore. Although Vistara could place 787-9s to Singapore, the market is quite saturated as several carriers operate flights between Singapore and India.

Tokyo could be another market where the 787 could comfortably fly. The East Asian market could support business and tourism demand on both ends of the route. Air India, Japan Airlines, and ANA fly to Tokyo from Delhi. Meanwhile, ANA is the only carrier to fly out of Mumbai to Japan. If Vistara closely coordinates with Japan Airlines, there is a possibility that JAL could pick up the Tokyo to Mumbai route while ceding Delhi to Tokyo to Vistara.

London is already a crowded market and Vistara would compete against Virgin Atlantic, Air India, and British Airways. Moreover, several other carriers in India are eyeing London flights. So, it might be in Vistara’s best interest to avoid this market.

In terms of ultra-long-haul flights, Vistara is unlikely to start flights to the United States or Canada. Those kinds of flights tend to be more high-risk. Vistara is likely focused on profitability over visibility at this point.

Vistara A320neo taking off
Since receiving their first A320neo, Vistara has only aimed higher. Photo: Airbus

What will Vistara’s onboard product look like?

Vistara will likely choose to install flatbeds on their 787-9s. These could be similar to Singapore Airlines’ 787-10 seats. With business class flatbeds becoming the norm these days, Vistara will want to beef up their onboard product in order to cater to high-end travelers.

In terms of economy, Vistara will likely outfit their 787-9s in a 3-3-3 configuration that has become standard across most airlines operating the 787.

Vistara A320 interior
The interior of a Vistara A320. Photo: Vistara

Vistara does also offer premium economy onboard some of their aircraft. It is almost certain that Vistara will install a premium economy cabin on brand new Boeing 787s.

Overall

Vistara is showing no signs of slowing down. They are slowly working towards becoming the dominant carrier in India. It remains to be seen exactly where the Boeing 787-9 will take Vistara.

Stay tuned for further Vistara updates here at Simple Flying.

Have you flown with Vistara? Will you fly with Vistara? Where do you think Vistara will fly their 787s? Let us know in the comments!

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