Aeroflot envisions its upcoming low-cost affiliate adopting a rigid fare structure in order to be competitive with ground transport.
During a meeting with Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev, the carrier's director Vitaly Savelyev said a rudimentary comfort would facilitate fare reductions of at least 40% compared with standard services.
“We'll offer a bare-bones product, with denser cabin layout and non-reclining seatbacks,” he says. “There will be tight luggage restrictions and bookings available only through the internet.”
The new division is being created from ”a clean sheet” and will be separate from Aeroflot's mainline operation. It is to carry out services across central Russia, adds Savelyev.
In August, Aeroflot's board endorsed disbursing funds for the project by year-end, with a view to launching it in 2014.
Deputy transport minister Valery Okulov suggests that the planned operator could serve the domestic routes with densest traffic, such as services from Moscow to St Petersburg, Sochi, Samara, Ekaterinburg and Kaliningrad.
Aeroflot, however, has not determined yet at which Moscow airport the low-cost will be based. Several options are being studied.