SpiceJet and the Lie of On-Time Performance – A Review

SpiceJet needs to realise that their customers deserve the truth.

Most of us who have travelled on low-cost airlines in India (like SpiceJet) are accustomed to being treated like cattle. Being pushed and shoved, herded together, prodded into submission. I don’t think it’s easy to differentiate any of the airlines, be it GoAir, SpiceJet or Indigo. JetAirways, Air India and Vistara are somewhat different because they supposedly project an aura of luxury via free food (and usually terrible service). However, our three main low-cost airlines have comparable levels of service, comfort and combination of good experiences and terrible experiences.

SpiceJet vs Indigo vs GoAir

Our three main low-cost airlines have comparable levels of service, comfort and any frequent traveller would have a combination of good experiences and terrible experiences (cancellations, bad customer service, dirty air-crafts, and so on).

However, I have never come across a blatant lie by any airline like that of SpiceJet. This is a lie that trivialises the time of all their passengers just in order to improve their public image and gain some advertising points.

The lie that is SpiceJet

Here is the lie that was flashed across newspapers in Bangalore (and I’m guessing the rest of India) a few days ago in January 2017.

SpiceJet Ad - On-Time Performance Lie

What is SpiceJet lying about? Well, you have to read on to know more.

The Lie of On-Time Performance (OTP) by SpiceJet

Earlier in December, I flew from Delhi to Bangalore. I have done this flight probably a hundred times in the last ten years. This time I flew on SpiceJet ( SG 473 ) and my flight details are given below:


See anything strange? No, I didn’t either when I booked the ticket or when SpiceJet sent me this itinerary via email. However, when I reached the airport I did notice something strange.

My flight from Delhi to Bangalore will be taking almost 3 hours: 2 hours 55 minutes to be precise. 

Now, that is strange. I have flown so many times that I know it doesn’t take nearly 3 hours to fly from Delhi to Bangalore. It usually takes a maximum 2 hours and 35 minutes. I thought that perhaps they are flying a smaller aircraft, which takes longer.

It was only when I boarded that I realised the truth.

SpiceJet schedules all flights 20 minutes prior to the actual departure time to give themselves some flexibility and to ensure “on-time arrivals”. 

While our flight was scheduled for 8.25 am, and we boarded well in advance. The flight only left at 8.45 am — 20 minutes after the scheduled departure time.

The Proof of the Lie by SpiceJet

The proof, they say, lies in the pudding. And the pudding here are real stats by flight history states by FlightRadar24.com

spicejet on-time performance lie


As you can see here, SpiceJet doesn’t have a single “on-time departure”. Instead, almost all their departures are 20 minutes late and almost all their arrivals are on-time. This is despite the usual Delhi fog and delays that have hit other airlines.

A Waste of Time and Productivity

SG 473 has 189 seats. That is 20 minutes x 189 passengers whose time has been wasted. That is 63 working hours that have been wasted. And multiply that by the number of flights SpiceJet runs per day, and you will realise the staggering impact of this lie.

In Conclusion

I’m really disappointed in SpiceJet; I hope they learn that their customers aren’t fools and deserve to be respected.

User Reviews and Comments

  1. deepika says

    Understanding that Spicejet is a Low Cost Airline, did not expect much from them as it was only a shabby and helpful choice for me. I took flight SG454 from Goa to Mumbai. As I had just hand gear, did an online check in. Be that as it may, there was no point as I needed to at present hold up in line. The prospect of 212 pax in an all economy design influenced me to believe that I would feel packed in a tin can. Be that as it may, the agreeable seats, exceptionally expert and cordial lodge group and the ambient melodies (Stevie Wonder, Lionel Richie) helped me to remember how a flight should really be. It’s about the experience to me and Spicejet genuinely conveyed that experience, that as well, on a short household division. I am exceptionally awed.

  2. Upasana Dijhy says

    My Spicejet flight was from VNS to MCT and it was a very much smooth and pleasant flight. I really liked the airport check-in as it was fast and efficient with a quick boarding on the plane. Throughout the flight, I found a seat was comfortable and clean. For a good end of my flight was its on-time arrival in Muscat. With this good fare on this route, I could expect any better value for my money spent for air travel.

  3. Lokindar Dasgupta says

    I have been flying SpiceJet since the last 4 years. To be honest, I am a bit of a patron when It comes to SpiceJet. I have lived through the worst phase of the airline in 2014 when cancellations were more common than on-time flights. However, what has struck me over the last 2 years is the transformation that the airline has seen. While most of us would assume that one man cannot weave magic, Mr. Ajay Singh seems to have done precisely that. The flights take off on time, the planes are clean as a classroom, the food is served hot and the crew is courteous. And the long queues at the airport seem to magically disappear without any halla-bulla! Yet it is affordable for middle-class blokes like me. Wonder what the SpiceJet formula is! This is almost surreal!

  4. Neetu Srivastava says

    Before 30th December, my opinion about SpiceJet as a budget airline was that it does not have much to offer. This was a sort of thinking I had previously. However, upon flying SpiceJet on 30th December, Mumbai – Hyderabad, it turned out to a pleasant surprise. Right from receiving the boarding pass at the check-in to on-boarding the flight, my entire flight experience was amazing. Thanks to spicejet staff that instilled this good feeling and provided a great experience.

  5. Ananya Devedi says

    Heavy rush during morning hours at Delhi airport is a common knowledge and most people will try & reach early to avoid any unwanted issues. However, nothing can prepare you for long queues and that too, Delhi crowd! However, I am amazed at the level-headedness and dexterity of the ground staff at airports. In this case, SpiceJet who manage such an unruly crowd so nonchalantly that gives the most seasoned customer care professionals goosebumps in their midsection.
    Within 10 mins I had my boarding pass and then ushered to the waiting coach whizzing past the security check. Kudos to Priyanka, the check-in counters executive and thank you to SpiceJet.

  6. Ashna Junaid says

    Yesterday, I traveled via Spicejet Ahmedabad-Bengaluru flight SG 921 and the overall experience was superb.
    Particularly, the on-time arrival at destination and your SG 921 flight attendant Riti impressed us a lot. This is the reason, I’m penning down my experience, here on SpiceJet facebook page. My happiness also got bigger when she (the flight attendant) delivered a pleasing in-flight service with a nice smile. Truly, deserves an appreciation for her service which is why I am writing up here to convey my gratitude on the behalf of my family.

  7. Sorabh Dastadoy says

    We have been using Spicejet now. This started on my travel from Pune. To begin with, I pleasingly remember the quality of food leaving from Pune airport was ok but the food from Mumbai to Kolkata was very good, In fact. Upon our simple request meal and the staff would come to check before leaving if we have got exactly what we had requested.
    I like the Nawabi feast Chicken tikka biryani on board of Spicejet very much, it was really really tasty, only Spicejet that I can ask for this tasty meal. The food and service are still the best I might say according to my experiences of flying when compared with other airlines.

  8. Prabhat says

    Spicejet offers Paneer Methi Malai I have ever had, second only to my mothers and definitely the best in the sky. The best part, if you order your meal in advance, you get a discount. fantastic meals on board. I pre-booked Paneer Methi Malai and honestly, this was the best

  9. Arohi Srinivasan says

    I travel with my mother who is at the age of 56, suffering from Osteomalacia, which is a bone disease causing fragile bones. For this reason, we stay vigil as she walks through slow and easy steps. And, thinking about air travel, Spicejet has been our only preference. Thanks to our pleasant luck as we still remember Spicejet flight attendant Komal, she provided a generous in-flight support to my mother and while de-boarding the flight, too. She promptly took care of her as if she was her own mother. Truly, we admire this immensely and since then we fly only Spicejet.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *