One of India’s leading domestic airlines, often billed as the nation’s most popular, is adding 18 seaplane routes to it already impressive domestic timetable.

Just over a week after adding more than 60 new domestic routes in ‘conventional’ aircraft, the airline is looking to further boost its pandemic takings with the seaplane flights that will include a ‘tribute route’ to the town of Kevadia, in Gujarat, western India – the site of a huge 182-metre statue of India’s first home minister, Vallabhbhai Patel.

Speaking about the addition of seaplane routes, SpiceJet’s chairman Ajay Singh said that “without the high cost of building airports and runways”, the seaplane routes would help cut costs with the aircraft designed to arrive and depart short airstrips on land in addition to doing the same on bodies of water, and the ocean if need be.

Reports from India indicate that India’s current Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, will be aboard a flight to Kevadia on Saturday to mark what would have been the 145th anniversary of Vallabhbhai Patel’s birth in 1875.

It is understood the aircraft to be used will be the Twin Otter 300s – a twin propeller driven seaplane originally built by the famed British aircraft producer de Havilland.
Each aircraft can seat 19 including crew.

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