Kathmandu, March 13, 2017: Saurya Airlines on Sunday added another jet to its fleet, three years after starting its commercial operation with a Bombardier CRJ-200 series jet.
The 50-seater Canadair Regional Jet (CRJ) has been purchased outright, the airline said. The estimated cost of the aircraft is Rs1 billion.
The plane bearing an American registration mark N695BR landed at the Tribhuvan International Airport at 5pm on Sunday.
“We have targeted to put the aircraft into operation within three weeks after completing necessary process as stipulated by the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (Caan),” said Umesh Acharya, deputy general manager of Saurya Airlines. “We have been allocated the Nepali registration mark 9N-AME by Caan and have started the process to deregister the foreign registration mark.”
The airline also announced that it would be adding another aircraft of the same type within three months.
Saurya is currently operating its flights on three trunk routes–Biratnagar, Bhadrapur and Nepalgunj. The carrier plans to add Dhangadhi and Bhairahawa routes with the operation of its second aircraft. “We are also starting the mountain flight soon,” the airline said, claiming that the aircraft is basically preferred by the people for its comfortable seat, spacious legroom, on time performance and optimum safety.
Saurya had been recategorised as a charter operator after it failed to meet the minimum required number of aircraft needed to operate as a scheduled passenger carrier. Under the Caan regulations, all scheduled carriers are required to operate at least two aircraft within six months of buying or leasing the first one.
On August 18, 2014, Saurya brought the CRJ-200 aircraft to serve domestic routes and was forced to keep its new plane grounded for nearly three months due to lengthy paperworks.
It launched the maiden commercial flight on November 17, 2014. Saurya Airlines carried 62,369 passengers in the first nine months of 2016.