MIAMI – Air India (AI) has announced a 3x weekly service to Vancouver from Delhi. This new route will be served using a Boeing 777-300ER.

According to Routes Online, the service will operate as AI185 to YVR and AI186 returning to DEL. The following schedule will go into effect on November 1, 2020, and will last until March 12th, 2021:

  • AI185 DEL0430 – 0700YVR 777-300ER
  • AI186 YVR1015 – 1545DEL 777-300ER
Air India 777-300ER departing Vancouver. Photo: Max Langley (@maxlangleyimages)

London, a Take over Bid, Repatriation Flights and COVID-19

In mid-August, news came to light that the Tata Group, at the time the only eligible bid on the airline, could have control of the company as early as January. However, a month later, the airline restarted its service between London Heathrow (LHR) and India’s Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport (CCU) for the first time in 11 years.

Throughout the pandemic, AI has been operating repatriation flights to Vancouver. This route has always had a very large market. Fellow Star Alliance member Air Canada (AC) operates the route with a Boeing 787-9. The new schedule itself has not changed and is the same as the repatriation flight schedule. The only thing changing about the service is the flight number:

  • DEL – YVR AI1143 -> AI185
  • YVR – DEL AI1144 -> AI186

With the ongoing pandemic it will be interesting to see what the passenger levels will be on these flights, as the airline has as of yesterday extended the deadline for its permanent employees to opt for its twin schemes of leave without pay (LWP) and shorter working week.

Apart from for Pilots and Cabin Crew, the schemes entail employees work three days a week at 60% pay. Now, employees can avail of these schemes till March 31, 2021.

FEatured image: Air India 777-200LR. Photo: Luca Flores (@luca_at_lax)