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Air India’s Milestone Expansion: A New Plane Every Week for a Year

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In a move signaling a significant expansion, Air India has set a remarkable plan into motion. The iconic Indian airline will be adding a new aircraft to its fleet nearly every week for a year. This bold move comes as part of the company’s larger strategy to modernize and enhance its services, promising a host of benefits for travelers and the Indian economy.

Traditionally, full-service carriers have often adorned themselves with red and blue hues. However, low-cost carriers have been taking a different approach, increasingly adopting orange and white as part of their logo and livery. Air India Express, following in the footsteps of Akasa, is the latest low-cost airline to embrace this vibrant color scheme. The unveiling of the airline’s new white, orange, and turquoise livery marks the integration of Air India Express with AirAsia India. Aloke Singh, the airline’s MD & CEO, stated, “We will be sunsetting the Air Asia India brand. You will continue to see two airline designators, IX and I5, on flight numbers for some time but the services, sales, and distribution will be done under Air India Express branding.”

The use of orange and white in the airline’s livery echoes the distinctive approach taken by several successful low-cost carriers worldwide. For instance, easyJet, a well-known European low-cost carrier, took to the skies with a white and orange fuselage in the 1990s. Meanwhile, Australia’s Jetstar has maintained its orange and silver livery since its founding in 2003.

Air India’s CEO, Campbell Wilson, explained the rationale behind the fleet expansion drive, saying, “On an average… between now and the end of 2024, AI will take delivery of one new aircraft every six days.” Notably, the airline has already received the first two of the 190 Boeing 737 Max aircraft ordered. The new livery of its unit, Air India Express, was revealed during an event held in Mumbai.

This ambitious expansion plan is a part of Air India’s broader strategy, which was announced in January 2023. The airline has placed orders for a total of 470 new aircraft from industry giants Airbus and Boeing, with deliveries scheduled over the coming years. These new planes will encompass both narrowbody and widebody aircraft. The narrowbody planes will be used to expand Air India’s domestic and regional network, while the widebody aircraft will play a crucial role in expanding international services and replacing older, less fuel-efficient planes.

The first batch of these new aircraft is anticipated to start arriving late in 2023. Air India plans to utilize these new additions to open up services to new destinations and enhance the frequency of flights on existing routes. Additionally, passengers can look forward to new premium cabins and services, enriching their travel experience.

Here are some of the key advantages stemming from Air India’s fleet expansion:

  • More flights to more destinations:
    This expansion will enable Air India to offer a more extensive flight network, both domestically and internationally, providing passengers with a broader range of travel options.

  • Increased flight frequency on existing routes:
    Air India will be able to operate more flights on established routes, offering passengers greater flexibility in their travel schedules.

  • Introduction of premium cabins and services:
    The airline is set to introduce new premium cabins and services on certain aircraft, providing passengers with a premium travel experience.

  • Economic boost:
    Air India’s fleet expansion initiative is poised to contribute to the Indian economy by generating employment opportunities and increasing revenue for the airline.

In conclusion, Air India’s bold fleet expansion plan is a significant step forward for the airline and Indian aviation as a whole. It promises to benefit passengers with more choices and premium services, fortify the airline’s position, and contribute positively to the Indian economy. The unveiling of Air India Express’s fresh and vibrant livery further signifies the airline’s commitment to a bright future. Stay tuned for the latest updates on this exciting development!

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