CoVid-19 Impact: Air India to close 5 European destinations

A couple of years ago, I used to appreciate all the fast expansion Air India was rolling out. They decided to go to places beyond the usual Paris, London and Frankfurt, now that they had the 787s. Over the years, they launched many new routes, or picked the routes from other airlines:

Also, apart from London, Air India launched flights to Paris, continued to operate flights to Frankfurt, launched flights to Birmingham and so on.

air india 787

Air India 787-8

However, the airline has now been for months with many aircraft on the ground, making it unable for them to fly the full schedule in the planned manner. And then, with CoronaVirus, air travel has taken a sharp dip.

For long, there has been no comment from Air India about what fleet plans are going to change going forward. For instance, the airline still has four 747-400s in the fleet which are aeroplanes other airlines are getting rid of (latest being British Airways). However, it seems Air India has now started to take some commercially sound decisions. In a statement issued by the airline today, Air India said,

Air India has decided to close down its stations in Vienna, Milan, Madrid, Copenhagen and Stockholm. AI would immediately initiate action for closure in consultation with local lawyers & advise the timelines by which the stations will be closed.

This move will kill all sorts of direct connectivity between India and these countries, as Air India was the only carrier serving the route.


Air India has already made some moves concerning cost-cutting via HR cost cuts, but this seems to be the first serious move to officially trim the network and right-size it for the current travel environment where tourism is out, and people are travelling sparingly.

What do you think of the Air India network cuts? I can sure guess there will be more. This is just the start.

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About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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  1. Actually i want to go in Europe i have got a scholarship so I decided to go there in September and the flight will reject then help me to get the information that how I will go there in September thanks for your precious help

  2. I guess that’s a fair decision taken by Air India if there is low air traffic to these countries, no point in putting money there just for sake of survival. Instead utilise funds in a good place. Also now that air bubbles have started with few countries why doesn’t AI start all flights to those countries and not just flights under VBM.

    • Yes… i am agree with your opinion…
      Defiantly air india.. do their best…. i am also air india staff.. i proud to work in air india..
      Mumbai, india

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