DALLAS – A 25% increase to Air India’s (AI) current fleet is on its way. The Maharajah has inked a lease agreement to induct 30 aircraft – 25 Airbus narrowbodies and 5 Boeing widebodies from the end of this year.
Of the 25 Airbus aircraft, it’s split between twenty-one A320neos and four A321neos, the latter being the first introduction for the airline. The A320neos are expected to join the carrier in Q1 of 2023 and the longer A321neo in the second half of 2023.
On the long haul front, the five Boeing jets would be the 777-200LRs, purely focused on connecting Major Indian metros to the United States.
In the past months, AI also reactivated sixteen grounded aircraft (ten narrow-bodies and six wide-bodies). In total, that makes 46 aircraft back to the skies. The leased ones will arrive in due course. As a first for AI, the incoming aircraft will see the introduction of ‘Premium Economy.’
“The B777-200LRs will join the fleet between December 2022 and March 2023 and will be deployed on routes from Indian metro cities to the United States of America. Mumbai will see the addition of flights to San Francisco as well as to both of the New York area’s international airports, Newark Liberty and John F Kennedy, while Bangalore will receive a 3x weekly service to San Francisco,” the company said in a press release.
“After a long time without significant growth, Air India is delighted to resume expanding its fleet and global footprint. 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,” said Campbell Wilson, CEO & Managing Director, Air India
“Air India has exciting expansion and renewal plans, of which these new aircraft are just the beginning,” he added.
Featured Image: Air India Boeing 777-200ER (VT-ALF). Photo: Luca Flores/Airways