SpiceJet (SG, Delhi Int'l) has once more deferred long-awaited longhaul expansion plans on the back of a weakening Indian rupee and rising oil prices.

“We expect to fly to many more countries in the future. (But) we will do long-haul international destinations only when it is commercially feasible,” airline chairman Ajay Singh told Livemint in an interview this week.

According to Singh, while longhaul flights will "eventually happen", their actual launch will depend on “a somewhat improved environment in terms of ATF (aviation turbine fuel) and taxation”.

Last year, Singh intimated that SpiceJet would look to Eastern European and Turkish destinations, rather than Western Europe as potential options for its longhaul debut.

In terms of fleeting, the Indian LCC has already begun widebody fleet acquisition studies with the A350-1000 from Airbus and the B787-10 from Boeing among top contenders. SpiceJet also has the option of upgauging some of its 205 B737 MAX order slots to widebody aircraft.

As it stands, SpiceJet operates three B737-700s, twenty-nine B737-800s (of which one is wet-leased from Corendon Airlines), four B737-900(ER)s, and twenty-two Dash 8-400s on flights spanning 55 cities across India, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Oman, Afghanistan, Thailand, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, and Bangladesh.