Billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala-owned Akasa Air on Friday opened bookings for ticket sales of its first commercial flights starting from August.

India's newest airline will initially operate flights from cities such as Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Kochi.

In the inaugural phase of its network development, Akasa Air will launch its operations by offering 28 weekly flights between Mumbai and Ahmedabad starting August 7, 2022, the budget carrier says in a statement.

Following this, starting August 13, the airline will start operating an additional 28 weekly flights between Bengaluru and Kochi. "All flights are open for sale with immediate effect," the airline says.

This comes weeks after Akasa Air received its air operator certificate (licence) from aviation regulator DGCA (directorate general of civil aviation).

"Akasa Air's network strategy is focused on establishing a strong pan-India presence and providing linkages from metro to tier 2 and tier 3 cities across the country. We kickstart operations with flights between Mumbai and Ahmedabad, with the brand-new Boeing 737 MAX aircraft," says Praveen Iyer, cofounder and chief commercial officer, Akasa Air.

"We will adopt a phased approach to support our network expansion plans, progressively connecting more cities, as we add two aircraft to our fleet each month, in our first year," Iyer adds.

The newest player in the Indian aviation sector intends to operate a fleet of 72 Boeing 737 MAX aircraft, which are to be delivered over the course of five years. Akasa Air received the delivery of its first aircraft on June 21. The airline is scheduled to receive 18 aircraft from Boeing by March 2023, followed by delivery of the remaining 54 aircraft over the course of next four years.

Bookings for flights on Akasa Air will be available via the mobile app, mobile web, desktop website, and through several online travel agents across the country.

"We are extremely excited to finally be able to offer up our flights for sale. We are also excited to reveal our product which promises to be unlike anything experienced in the category thus far," says Vinay Dube, founder and chief executive officer, Akasa Air.

Customers can look out for fare specials being announced as the airline makes its foray into each new sector across the country, the airline says.

"Akasa Air's buy-on-board meal service will be available at Café Akasa - offering a wide choice of tasty, healthy, and quality meals to provide customers an indulgent experience in the skies. A selection of quality fusion meals, farm-inspired and plant-based offerings, varied menu options like pasta, Vietnamese rice rolls, hot chocolate and a year-round festival menu inspired by Indian cuisines and celebrations, is guaranteed to thrill taste buds," the airline says.

Earlier this month, Akasa Air unveiled the first look of its airline crew uniform. The trouser and jacket fabric of the uniform has been made using recycled polyester fabric, which is made from pet bottle plastic salvaged from marine waste. The carrier has also introduced sneakers for its cabin crew.

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