Air India may reduce flights to New York

Air India discusses reducing flights to New York, decision likely soon

MUMBAI: Surging air turbine fuel prices and mounting losses may compel Air India to reduce the frequency some of its international flights including its recently-introduced New York flights from both Mumbai and Delhi.

The matter was understood to have been discussed at a meeting of senior Air India officials recently.

“The meeting discussed the issue of reducing the frequency of some of our flights, including the Delhi-New York and Mumbai-New York non-stop services. However, due to divergent views, no final call was taken,” an Air India official told PTI today on strict condition of anonymity.

According to the official, one of the proposals discussed was to cut the New York flights by half from both the destinations.

Currently, there are seven flights a week from each destination.

Apart from high operational costs, the load factor on both the routes is also understood to be below the air-carrier’s expectations. “This is also weighing on the minds of the management,” the official said.

The officials discussed reducing the flights to three from New Delhi and four from Mumbai in view of the not-so-encouraging load factor,” he said.

The airline is incurring losses to the tune of Rs 2.5 crore per day on each of its flights. The average load factor is understood to be in the range below average 40-56 per cent.

Both the routes were launched with much fanfare during the tenure of the former Air India Chairman and Managing Director V Tulasidas.

Source : The Economic Times

My opinion :

At a time when most foreign carriers are booming in India, and increasing flights to India, it is a sad testimony on the administration of Air India due to all the interference from the various “babudoms” of the Governments of India and the States.

How dare Air India not service Delhi and Mumbai, even if there is no traffic. Let us remain oblivious of the traffic demand from Bangalore to San Francisco, which is ensuring all the foreign carriers flights go full. After all the Indian tax payers are here not just to subsidise other Indians, but other foreign countries as well.

Let us also ensure the demise of Indian carriers, by preventing them from flying overseas. How can we, the benevolent Government of India, hurt the foreign carriers and Jet Airways. We must prevent Kingfisher from setting up an international hub in Bangalore.

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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