Qatar Airways and Indigo announce a codeshare agreement to strengthen connectivity between Qatar and India.
After a few days of media speculation, this news sounds underwhelming. I had been following the trail this week and there were plenty of speculations including
- Investment by Qatar Airways into Indigo
- Increase of bilateral seats between India and Qatar
- Setting up an international hub in Doha for Indigo
In fact, these rumors had prompted India’s stock market regulator to ask Indigo for a clarification yesterday. At one time, the stock had gone up as high as 5%.
Qatar Airways and Indigo Codeshare Details
Today, Qatar Airways and Indigo have jointly issued a press release. You can find a copy here. This looks similar to the codeshare agreement announced by Emirates and Spicejet earlier in the year.
As per the press release,
“The airlines have signed a one-way codeshare agreement where-in Qatar Airways will place its code on IndiGo flights between Doha and Delhi, Mumbai and Hyderabad”
That is all to it. It is noteworthy that this is a one-way codeshare. In other words, none of Qatar Airways flights (even those from India) are part of this. Even for Indigo, only the flights operating between Doha and Delhi / Mumbai / Hyderabad are part of the arrangement. These are the flights operating in these routes:
- Delhi: Indigo – 14x weekly, Qatar – 14x weekly
- Mumbai: Indigo – 14x weekly, Qatar – 7x weekly
- Hyderabad: Indigo – 10x weekly, Qatar – 7x weekly
Apart from Qatar Airways and Indigo, Air India is the only other operator on these routes.
Here is a quick look at the fares a month from now on the Doha-Delhi-Doha route
As you can see, Qatar Airways flights are priced more than 2x Indigo and Air India.
In contrast to what was rumored, the announcement came as a surprise. Perhaps, this could be a precursor for bigger things to follow. Remember, Indigo has a more extensive arrangement with Turkish Airlines.
It would appear that Qatar Airways would be the major beneficiary of this. This would indirectly provide more seats from India particularly for its service to Europe and North America.
What do you think of this announcement?