Air India Returns To Expansion Mode Under Tata, To Induct 30 Aircraft In 15 Months
Air India has signed leases and letters of intent for inducting five wide-body Boeing aircraft and 25 narrow-body Airbus planes over 15 months.
Air India Ltd. will add 30 new aircraft from December this year to boost its domestic and international services.
The airline, owned by Tata Sons Pvt. Ltd., has signed leases and letters of intent for inducting five wide-body Boeing aircraft and 25 narrow-body Airbus planes over 15 months.
"These new aircraft, which will enter service from late 2022, will increase the airline's fleet by over 25%," Air India said in a statement on Monday. "These new aircraft mark the first major fleet expansion since Air India's acquisition by the Tata Group earlier this year."
The planes being leased include 21 Airbus A320Neos, 4 Airbus A321Neos and 5 Boeing B777-200LRs. The Boeing planes will join the fleet between December 2022 and March 2023. They will be deployed on routes connecting major cities of India and the United States.
"Mumbai will see the addition of flights to San Francisco as well as to New York's Newark Liberty and John F Kennedy airports, while Bangalore will receive a 3X weekly service to San Francisco," the statement read. "These aircraft will result in Air India offering Premium Economy haul flights for the first time."
Additionally, four A321Neo aircraft are expected to join Air India's fleet in the first quarter of 2023, while the 21 A320Neos will be inducted in the second half of next year. These will be deployed on domestic sectors as well as for short-haul international destinations.
"These new aircraft, together with existing aircraft being returned to service, address an immediate need for more capacity and connectivity, and mark a strong step forward," Air India CEO and MD Campbell Wilson said in the statement.
Air India, at present, has 70 narrow-body aircraft, of which 54 are in service. The rest will be operational by early 2023. The national flag carrier has 43 wide-body planes, of which 33 are operational. The rest will return to service by early 2023.