Dobrolet, Aeroflot’s low-cost subsidiary, has completed its first commercial flight from Moscow to Simferopol. “The low-cost carrier business model is in high demand worldwide and especially in our vast country, as it gives millions of Russians with average income the opportunity to fly and thereby contributes to the country’s social and economic development,” commented, Vitaly Saveliev, CEO of Aeroflot and chairman of the board for Dobrolet.
Aeroflot claims its budget subsidiary’s transport costs are 20 to 30 per cent lower than the average classic carrier, and that this may be reduced further. Simferopol is Dobrolet’s first key destination with four daily flights. In August, it will launch flights to St Petersburg and Samara, expanding to cover other Russian regions. From 2016, Dobrolet plans to fly to international destinations, primarily in Europe and the CIS. By 2018, the airline plans to operate 45 routes carrying more than 10 million passengers. The airline’s fleet will consist of new 737-800NGs designed to carry 189 passengers in a one-class configuration. Dobrolet plans to increase its fleet to eight by the end of 2014 and 40 by 2018.