India’s national carrier, Air India, needs no introduction. Generations of air travelers in India and overseas have been making Air India their preferred airline. The endearing Maharajah, the airline’s mascot, symbolises a service brand and trust that has endured and grown. When Air India came into being in 1932, it pioneered aviation in India and carved for itself a special place in India’s civil aviation history and since then it has been connecting homes and hearts for generations of people all over the world.
Over the years, the airline has kept pace with trends and technology; changing consumer needs and preferences and has constantly evolved in sync with changing times. It is not just an airline that transports people and cargo. It is an institution by itself. The massive infrastructure Air India has built over the years, like its engineering and maintenance facilities, well-equipped training schools and simulators for pilot training and extensive ground handling facilities, help to keep its resources of men and material in top gear. Air India makes that special emotional connect with India. And that is what sets it apart.
Air India is also young at heart. Its 130 strong fleet, a mix of B787 Dreamliners, B777s,A320 family, apart from the CRJs and ATR aircraft, is one of the youngest in the world. A key boost to the brand comes from the comfort that these aircraft offer. While the technologically advanced Dreamliner has been a game changer for the airline, it is the B777s that ushered in an era of non-stop long haul flights. Recently, Air India introduced one of the world’s longest non-stop flights with a B777 operation from Delhi to San Francisco. The US is already connected with non-stop flights to Chicago, New York and Newark and Washington.
The B787 Dreamliner has been a game changer for Air India. With 27 of these fuel-efficient aircraft in its fleet, Air India has been offering its passengers a comfortable and enjoyable experience with its non-stop connections from India to several destinations like London, Rome, Milan, Vienna, Madrid, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Osaka, Hong Kong, Sydney, Melbourne, Dubai and more. Besides, the Dreamliners have been hugely popular for its domestic operations in Kolkata, Bengaluru, Mumbai and Amritsar.
As a National Carrier, Air India connects every corner of India & abroad with 75 destinations across the length and breadth of India and 44 abroad, spread across US, Australia, Europe, Far and South-east Asia and the Gulf, the airline truly connects people and hearts. Within the country, there is an increasing emphasis on regional connectivity, with smaller cities being linked to the major hubs and thereby, promoting tourism, business and employment opportunities. The air traveller is the direct beneficiary; the socio-economic structure of the country also gets strengthened.
The Star Alliance partnership in 2014, the first for an Indian carrier, has put Air India into the big league with 27 other top airlines. For passengers, it is time to enjoy a host of benefits, such as seamless transfers, more combined frequent flyer loyalty points, code sharing, leading to a wider choice of flights and access to facilities at more than 1000 lounges worldwide. The alliance network currently offers over 18450 daily flights to 1300 airports in 190 countries.
Air India has cleared the IOSA (IATA Operational Safety Audit) renewal successfully which includes Safety Management System’s implementation. Air India has always been committed to the highest level of safety in all its aspects of operations. It has met best international standards and practices besides meeting standards set by DGCA. The national airline was the first airline in India to obtain IOSA and ISAGO (IATA Safety Audit of Ground Operations) certifications.
From standing by the nation during any crisis, reflecting the tradition and culture of the country, or showcasing the strength of emerging India – Air India has always been identified with India. Recently, Air India played a key role in the evacuation of Indians and other nationals from the war torn country of Yemen. While the Yemen evacuation was still fresh in the minds of people the national carrier was again called upon to bring back stranded people in the quake devastated country of Nepal. Whether it is a natural calamity or war- Air India always spreads its wings to be with India and Indians. Who can forget Air India’s epic evacuation of over 1,70,000 Indians stranded in war-torn Kuwait through 488 rescue flights over 59 days way back in 1990!
Air India is truly Indian indeed. Be it the aircraft livery, the delicious Indian cuisine on board or the warm Indian hospitality and service- Air India and its evergreen mascot the Maharajah has got inextricably linked to the very air of India. And, judging from the mere pleasures of flying, the comfort of having Indian crew around, the wide seats and extra leg room, extra baggage allowance, extensive domestic and international network, state-of-the-art B787 and B777s, A320neos as well as the innovative offers and pricing along with the Star Alliance member benefits all contribute to make Air India one of the most trusted brands for air travellers in India and abroad.