SpiceJet’s cargo delivery service SpiceXpress has received approval from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to conduct drone trials. The company aims to deliver medical supplies, essentials, and e-commerce products after successful trials and approvals.
“Testing of drone technology for last mile connectivity and cost-effective cargo deliveries are a big leap in the air transportation of essential and non-essential supplies in India,” said Ajay Singh, SpiceJet Chairman & Managing Director, in a statement.
SpiceXpress has reportedly formed a consortium that includes drone manufacturer Throttle Aerospace, an analytics and software-based firm AeoLogic, and air traffic awareness & collision avoidance services provider Involia.
According to reports, SpiceXpress was granted permission for conducting trials based on the recommendations of the Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) Experiment Assessment and Monitoring Committee.
“Drones will ensure a faster delivery bringing down costs and would go a long way to augment the airline’s business to offer express delivery of medicines, perishable items and e-commerce”, said the company.
To be specific, SpiceXpress said it plans to introduce its last-mile delivery services focused on reaching remote areas in a cost-efficient manner right from its warehouse.
While SpiceJet has not explicitly mentioned the timeline for drone delivery trials, we could expect it to happen sooner rather than later taking the ongoing coronavirus crisis into consideration. It will be interesting to see if SpiceJet manages to implement this system on a large scale across the country.
In case you’re wondering, using drones for last-mile delivery is not entirely a novel idea. Last October, Alphabet’s Wing started commercial drone deliveries in the U.S.