Air India

Tag Archives for Air India.

Air India back in the running for *A, taking Jet Airways along?

Just a couple of days back I was flipping through the Star Alliance magazine, and was wondering where were they going with Air India because there was no mention in the magazine of AI. However, it definitely was not a closed chapter since AI definitely needs to get into an alliance (amongst other things), to be able to get more traffic on its planes and shore up its finances. Last year, *A left AI on the altar when the airline was grabbing all the wrong headlines for safety issues, financial issues and the systematic failure that it was going to become. There was also news that the Government of India did not appreciate that *A wanted a second partner in…

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Air India to reduce business class on intra-India routes

Considering the speed of decision making and the soup that Air India finds itself in with every decision these days, I am not surprised it took an entire Board of Directors to come to a decision such as this one. In a meeting of the Air India board this evening, the airline has decided to fall in line with the same strategy that Jet Airways has been following for a while. Essentially, the number of business class seats will be reduced from 34 Airbus planes of the airline, which will include the A320 and A319s, which are primarily used for domestic flights in India. The number of seats is not known yet. Air India, which has managed to get its schedules…

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Air India plans to launch 787 service on Delhi – Melbourne late 2012

The gloves are off and Air India finally seems to be getting into network planning mode. Maybe they now see a realistic chance of getting some Boeing 787 planes, while the controversy about who will fund this purchase goes on, and whether Boeing owes Air India a compensation of USD 1 billion. So, an Australian delegation hit up India earlier this week for trade talks, and at the end of this trip, the famed Delhi – Melbourne dreams of Air India were revived. Air India has been planning to launch this money-sucker route since 2010, and has postponed the launch dates two times already from 2010 to 2011 and now into 2012. The initial plans were supposed to make it…

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Air India’s Flying Returns now has some frequent flyer benefits!

I have been a dormant Air India Flying Returns member for the longest time. Air India was my first business travel airline, since it was the preferred carrier for my employer then, and back in the days I did fly a lot on them till other airlines such as Jet Airways found their way into this monopoly. At that point of time, I was a novice in the points game, and for my life could not figure out the perks of being loyal to an airline, except for collecting miles on my frequent flyer account. With Air India, the elite perks were always not very well defined, and it was a mystery how the guy next to me got preferential…

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Jet Airways follows Kingfisher Airlines and Air India downhill

Airlines in India have really been taken on the downward spiral, for their own reasons. But the common thread of going down for all of them was having to offer low fares which did not even cover the cost of fuel. Everyone in the Indian aviation market blamed Air India for the predatory pricing, where they were keeping ticket prices really low, and hence everyone else had to follow suit to be competitive.The US Dollar/Indian Rupee moving 20% in the USD’s favour did not help them either, because all of a sudden, fuel costs, unhedged for all of them most of the time, were up 20%. Jet Airways, the classiest and best Indian airline for domestic travel for long, and…

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Why Air India needs a few good men (or women)

Now, all of us know that Air India, being the flag carrier and owned by the government, is run by bureaucrats. So, they have a hit and miss track record with special promotions which are not thought through to the end, and this current one is just one of them I suppose. In a promotion launched for the international markets, Air India is offering Non-resident Indians and international passport holders the offer to travel in India on AI, with a package of tickets which cost anywhere from US$ 200 + taxes (for 2 segments) to US$1000+ taxes for 9 segments in the economy segment. Taxes per segment are usually in the region of 10$ or less per segment, depending on…

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Indian Carriers now bring the widebodies to the Middle East, finally!

This has been an anomaly finally getting sorted out. While I agree and it makes sense that ports such as Dubai, Riyadh and other Middle-east posts are within the flight range of a narrowbody like a 73x or a 32x series plane, but the Mid-East carriers such as Emirates have been dumping capacity (to fly forward pax to North America etc). For the longest time they flew the B777s to India, and my expectations were set high when I first booked a BOM-DXB-BOM in 2009, without bothering to check if it was a narrowbody plane or a widebody. I was thoroughly pissed with myself for not checking up the plane when I walked into the plane to realise it was…

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Unlimited flying on Air India with the new Pass!

Air India has been in the market with an unlimited flying pass for the past few months, and I thought I’d cover it now that the validity of the product was extended. For people who anticipate a lot of travel in India in a burst of 15 days, this is the product they should gun for. The product comes in two variants: The Silver Pass allows for Economy class travel for INR 35,000 (700 USD) The Platinum Pass allows for Business class travel for INR 75,000 (1,500 USD) The 15-days period starts from the day the first trip is made, and one can move across the 66 destinations of the airline inside India. This amount includes the taxes and fees…

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Do you still want to travel in the Indian festive season? Here is how…

Unless you are allergic like me to paying super-duper high business class prices for economy seating to travel around India in the next 2-3 months, your options are fast getting limited to travel around in the festive season in India. Like I mentioned in this post a few days back, airlines have predictably decided to add to their revenues by jacking up ticket prices over the next few months. I was not surprised but slightly disgusted at double fares in the same fare classes which got inflated over a week or so. October to December is peak travel time in India, what with all the festivals for everyone bunching up, along with a longish wedding season coming up too! Here…

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Air India won an award, what? What? WHAT?

I have my jaw dropped as I write this. I am slightly surprised that Air India can win an award for good service! And I am trying to figure this out, so stay with me till I figure this out! A tweet appeared on my timeline this evening and I rubbed my eyes when I saw it. It said something to the effect of Air India winning an award for good quality service. It kind of reminded me of the time I last got on an AI plane domestic and I was stranded for approximately 24 hours before I got on the next one. It also reminded me of the time when I got on an AI plane to Singapore…

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SkyTeam courting Air India (a.k.a. the rebound after being dumped by *A)

Air India may still have a shot at becoming an awesome airline, and that one is all thanks to joining the SkyTeam ***drum beats*** 😉 I am sure the people at Air India’s helm are watching a lot of “How I Met Your Mother”, and decided to act awesome in line with the Bro Code. After being embarrassed by the Star Alliance, who AI took 4 years to ‘comply’ with the membership conditions of, and then *A leaving them alone at the altar, the news reports are now talking of SkyTeam talking to the Government of India about inducting Air India into their alliance. Speculations were ripe about this as early as the beginning of August, as per the Centre…

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