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Air India to Lease Six B777 Aircraft for US Routes to Avoid Delays

By: Auto Desk

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Last Updated: August 10, 2022, 11:43 IST

New Delhi, India

Image used for representation. (Photo: Manav Sinha/News18.com)

Image used for representation. (Photo: Manav Sinha/News18.com)

The aircraft are expected to arrive by October and will be leased for two years

Air India is reportedly planning to lease six B777 aircraft for the first time in at least a decade. As per a report in Hindustan Times, officials with direct knowledge of the matter told that this was being done largely due to the poor interiors which were responsible for the delays in flights to North America. The airline now aims to double down on its flight frequencies to the continent. The aircraft are expected to arrive by October and will be leased for two years.

According to an official from the airline, flights to the US and Canada, especially to Vancouver, were being delayed recently due to defective seats. “Taking into account the impact on the airline operations, it has been decided that the airline will lease six B777 to operate its ultra-long-haul flights [lasting over 16 hours),” an airline official told as quoted by the Hindustan Times, requesting anonymity. To note, they also informed that the existing aircraft have no other issues.

The new B777 aircraft will be used for flight operations by Air India within three months. The official added that they will be operated in addition to the currently available aircraft.

According to a second official, the airline plans to increase the frequency of the flights or add more destinations, keeping the current demand in mind. “The six leased aircraft will not replace the previous ones but will be additions to the fleet,” they said.

As per the information received from Flightradar 24, which provides real-time information about aircraft globally, Air India’s Delhi-Vancouver flight was repeatedly delayed, including by as much as 11 hours on July 10.

Separately, the airline is also planning to buy around 50 Airbus A350-900 and 100 A321neo aircraft. They will induct them by mid-next year. Earlier, the pilots were also asked to prepare for training on the A350-900 aircraft. They have a fleet of 141 narrow and wide-body Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

After being nationalised, Air India was acquired back by its Founders, the Tata Group, in October last year. Recently, they announced that they will be bringing back their 10 grounded wide-body aircraft to service by early 2023.

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first published:August 10, 2022, 11:43 IST
last updated:August 10, 2022, 11:43 IST