Purring Off

Lion Air is swapping its large Avro aircraft for a smaller Shorts plane as it scrambles to stay afloat amidst falling passenger numbers.
The airline presently shares the domestic aviation market with Expo Aviation and Serendib Air.rn

rnWhen the government re-opened the domestic aviation sector, Lion Air and Expo Aviation were among the first to offer flights from Colombo to Jaffna. The Serendib Group joined in thereafter, and a price war for airfares ensued. rn

rnThings have since stabilised. The price of ticket to Jaffna, which started at around Rs. 4,500 has now gradually gone up to Rs. 8,600. rn

rnThanks to a working agreement, Lion and Expo now code share and keep ticket prices at the same levels.rn

rn”Sri Lankan market cant fetch premium prices. So it is unrealistic to offer rock bottom prices, when you have lease payments for aircrafts, landing fees and other heavy overheads,” says Hiran de Silva, Director of the Ceylinco Group. rn

rnLion, which is now under the Ceylinco Groups manageme