USA-bound: Air India continues its march of progress

An Air India A350 and operating crew.
Photo Credit: Air India

Air India has once again made its way into the headlines recently. The latest news is a decision to start new routes to United States of America from Indian cities.

Air India has been undergoing a merger with full-service carrier Vistara. Once complete, it is all set to become the largest airline in the country. The airline recently announced a record-breaking order for new aircraft.

Now the airline is optimizing its operations and aircraft utilization with A350s now joining the airline’s fleet.

Along with the Boeing 777 aircraft, the airline is now planning to launch new flights. At the same time, it will also upgrade the aircraft flying on the existing routes.

Air India USA-bound

According to a report in Economic Times the airline is planning to start flights from India to Los Angeles, Dallas and Seattle in the coming winter schedule of 2024-2025.

Currently, Air India is the sole Indian carrier operating non-stop flights between India and the United States of America.

There is exceptionally high demand on this sector, as most of the passengers prefer direct flights between these two cities rather than having a layover.

Air India currently operates flights to Newark, New York, Chicago, Washington and San Francisco from India.

Photo Credit: Air India.

A Raft of Complaints

The airline has received a lot of complaints on its long-haul flights, be it their Boeing 777 or 787 aircraft.

Passengers, and even some celebrities, have taken on social media to express their displeasure with the service provided by the airline.

The most common complaints raised on social media include faulty IFE on long-haul flights, broken seat reclines or filthy cabins.

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These issues are result of years of underinvestment in upkeep of the aircrafts when the airline was under the Government of India.

Tata Group, the new owners, have taken up the work of fixing something which has been broken for years.

With the new order for around 470 new aircrafts with both Boeing and Airbus, the airline is looking to enhance the customer experience.

An Air India A350 gets a water cannon welcome.
Photo Credit: Air India

Ultra-Long Haul Flights

The A350s are expected to be deployed on services to Seattle whereas the new Boeing 777 will be deployed on their other ultra-long-haul flights.

Ultra-long-haul flights are the ones which are more than 16 hours duration.

According to the report, the airline is also considering upgrading the aircraft type from Boeing 787 to 777 on its London Heathrow route on its flights from New Delhi and Mumbai.

The airline is also schedule to launch new route between Bengaluru and London Gatwick. This service is also expected to be launched with the widebody Boeing 787 Dreamliners.

The merger with Vistara will help the airline increase its fleet size and slots availability at major airports in the country and aboard. Vistara currently owns Boeing 787 Dreamliner aircraft and operates flights to Paris, London, Frankfurt.

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