SpiceJet (SG, Delhi International) is in talks over the wet-lease of a single A330 from Oman Air (WY, Muscat) to use it for passenger charter flights covered by "travel bubble" agreements with India, the TNN newswire has reported.

In the first phase, the airline plans to use the Airbus widebody to operate repatriation charters from the United Kingdom under the government-run Vande Bharat programme. However, later, SpiceJet would seek to expand the A330's deployment to other countries.

The airline sees an opportunity in restrictions on travel to and from India via hubs in the Middle East. While the Delhi government has recently agreed to establish a "travel window" with the United Arab Emirates, flights between the two countries would only be accessible to Indians travelling between them with no options for transit.

Meanwhile, according to unofficial reports, India has been discussing creating "travel bubbles" with various countries in Europe and the United States. The establishment of such arrangements could create demand for charter flights, SpiceJet believes, given the absence of competition from the Gulf airlines.

Neither SpiceJet nor Oman Air responded to ch-aviation's request for comment. The Omani airline operates four A330-200s and seven A330-300s, of which only two -300s are active on repatriation and cargo-only charters. All scheduled flights to and from Oman remain suspended for the time being.

According to the ch-aviation fleets module, SpiceJet does not operate any in-house widebody aircraft. The LCC's fleet consists of seven B737-700s, fifty B737-800s, four B737-900ERs, thirty-two Dash 8-400s, thirteen grounded B737-8s, as well as five dedicated freighters - three B737-700(BDSF)s and two B737-800(BCF)s. However, the airline is said to have been planning to add widebodies in 2020 to launch scheduled flights to, among others, London.