B747-437B
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Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 6:18 am

Air India will add their 13th weekly service between India and the UK from December 4, when they introduce a terminator service between Mumbai and London via Delhi. Flights will be operated by Boeing 747-400 aircraft.

AI 121/120 (ops Sat)

BOM d 0845
DEL a 1035 d 1155
LHR a 1605 d 1830
DEL a 0815+1 d 0930+1
BOM a 1125+1

Air India already serves London 5x weekly nonstop from Delhi, 5x weekly nonstop from Mumbai and 2x weekly nonstop from Ahmedabad. The airline also provides daily service to New York JFK, 3x weekly service to Chicago O'Hare and codeshare with Virgin Atlantic on 3x weekly services to Delhi.
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
jasepl
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 6:35 am

How did they manage to get the slots at Heathrow? In any case, it looks like another "irregular" slot for AI.

Think they should threaten BA and VS with irregular slots at BOM and DEL? It'll prolly be disastrous but fun anyway to give BA a different slot time each night at each of the airports!
 
flyguy1
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 6:41 am

Any chance AI would ever add more flights at JFK? It would seem a second daily servie at least during the peak season would be viable.
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Thunderbird1
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 6:41 am

Does AI have any plans for expansion to/from CCU? It seems like the LHR/CCU sector would do well, though BA has it covered part of the week.
 
dutchjet
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 6:43 am

How does this move by Air India affect the flights that are flown by Virgin Atlantic? Arent the 3 weekly Virgin flights to India operated on authority "borrowed" from Air India/
 
jasepl
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 7:09 am

Thunderbird, I think Sean did say before in another thread that AI had tried and failed a number of times with Calcutta. I guess East India's just not worth it, at least for now.
 
scottysair
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 7:54 am

Is that already increase with LHR flights and how is load factor are doing? Can you please comfirmed with their flight is doing.
 
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FlyCaledonian
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 7:57 am

AI's 13 flights plus the three frequencies used by VS makes 16. BA operates 19 frequencies per week (BOM and DEL daily, CCU 3x weekly and MAA 2x weekly). So in theory AI has another three frequencies that it can use itself or pass onto VS. Or have I missed something?
Let's Go British Caledonian!
 
B747-437B
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 8:18 am

How did they manage to get the slots at Heathrow?

Begging, bribery, threats, coercion, human sacrifice... the usual story.

Any chance AI would ever add more flights at JFK?

Not in the near future.

Does AI have any plans for expansion to/from CCU?

No. All major expansion in the immediate future will be from Southern India, possibly with a few Northern ones (Lucknow, Amritsar) though.

How does this move by Air India affect the flights that are flown by Virgin Atlantic? Arent the 3 weekly Virgin flights to India operated on authority "borrowed" from Air India/

They are not affected... yet. This makes 16 utilized frequencies on the Indian side, still 1 weekly frequency under the permitted 17 weekly.

So in theory AI has another three frequencies that it can use itself or pass onto VS. Or have I missed something?

Bilateral allows 17x weekly services, plus additional services which can only be used to Kolkota (as per some side-agreement with the Government of West Bengal - no clue why that came about). I believe that there is a similar one in place if BA wanted to start Heathrow - Guwahati, but somehow I don't see that happening! Big grin
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
dulleswatcher
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 8:45 am

Purely for speculation, Sean, can you guess at how many frequencies BA and VS would have into all ports in India and how many AI would have into all ports in the UK if there were Open Skies? Strikes me that so many pax go thru Dubai, KWI, Bahrain, CDG, AB) (FRA / FRF / EDDF), Germany">FRA, etc to get from India to UK and vv that the 17/19 per week in each direction seems ludicrously low. Another great accomplishment by the idiot babus? thx.
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B747-437B
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 11:44 am

the 17/19 per week in each direction seems ludicrously low. Another great accomplishment by the idiot babus

This is one situation where I think the impasse isn't entirely the Babus fault. As we have discussed many times before, any "open skies" or similar agreement must be based upon principles of reciprocal access. As long as the UK airports remain severely capacity constrained and dominated by British carriers, there will always be an imbalance in their favor in any unregulated situation.

It is also really hard to judge what kind of capacity the market can bear as long as the artificial controls are in place. Undoubtedly, there are many secondary markets in India that would be able to support nonstops to London, but not with the guage that the market is currently utilizing (virtually entirely 744s). Would the scarce airport slots be optimally utilized by serving those destinations and if so, what kind of premium must the yield command to make it viable. Would there be a downgrade of existing guage to reduce actual capacity and boost yields. And most importantly would there be just another artificial ceiling imposed as a result of that hypothetical, thus simply skewing the marketshare towards the British carriers without any real consumer benefits through net capacity growth. Lots of questions there beyond a simple supply-and-demand curve.
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
IndianGuy
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 1:39 pm


I believe that there is a similar one in place if BA wanted to start Heathrow - Guwahati, but somehow I don't see that happening!

Dont be too sure! I believe that agreement (covering building up Guwahati as an international gateway to the NE also provides incentives like zero taxes and stuff which could help the airline provide dirt cheap tickets. Mebbe BA could make a killing here!

-Roy
 
Vimanav
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 2:57 pm

Dont be too sure! I believe that agreement (covering building up Guwahati as an international gateway to the NE also provides incentives like zero taxes and stuff which could help the airline provide dirt cheap tickets. Mebbe BA could make a killing here!

Only if they make it a double daily with B744s and extend them to Silchar, Dibrugarh and Imphal. Wink/being sarcastic

rgds//Vimanav
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mrniji
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 7:42 pm

Although CCU is not in consideration, and has done bad in the past, as said, I believe that a relaunch would do well.. AI could really do well on that route.. so many Bengali bhaiis allover here, one of them my housemate, who always point out that Bengal is discriminated by the center  Big thumbs up
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
jasepl
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 7:56 pm

Roy... Have you ever bee to the North-East? It'll be a snowy day in Bombay before anyone can make money flying long haul out of there! Cheers, Jason
 
IndianGuy
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 17, 2004 9:01 pm


Have you ever bee to the North-East?

spent a fabulous holiday in Shillong actually! but thats beside the point!

CCU catchment area includes the entire eastern area and if if ex-GAU is cheaper than ex-CCU, then it could well be viable.

In any case people in Eastern part of India seem to be very pro-BA. Atleat thats the impression u get when you talk to some Bongs.

-Roy
 
B747-437B
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 2:10 am

who always point out that Bengal is discriminated by the center

Well, if they stopped electing commies to power maybe that wouldn't happen so much! Still, Bengal has improved by leaps and bounds in recent years and I wouldn't be surprised to see Kolkota receive a bit of a belated urban economic boost soon. There is no reason that a city that size with a huge resource of educated people should be wallowing so badly while Bangalore and Hyderabad and other smaller cities race ahead.

It'll be a snowy day in Bombay before anyone can make money flying long haul out of there!

I should clarify that I was being facetious about Guwahati-Heathrow nonstops, although Roy seems to be taking it seriously (why am I not surprised? Big grin).

Considering that Guwahati couldn't even support itself one weekly Airbus to Bangkok, nonstops to Heathrow seem a bit far fetched. Remember, the only reason that AI started GAU flying in the first place was the relationship between AI's then-CEO the late J.N. Gogoi and Assam's chief minister Tarun Gogoi. Thankfully SARS put a kebosh on that experiment before too long.
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
IndianGuy
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 3:06 am


Considering that Guwahati couldn't even support itself one weekly Airbus to Bangkok, nonstops to Heathrow seem a bit far fetched.

With AI doing the marketing you surely cant expect any better?

AI can only sell tickets when the capacity is less than the demand. Hence the desire to keep capacity low. Even if that means artifically constricting growth becuase AI cant keep up.

Wherever the passenger has an option, AI automatically becomes the 2nd or last choice. And that in itself says a lot. Remember I am talking of the passenger who has to pay for the ticket.

-Roy
 
jasepl
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 4:24 am

Wherever the passenger has an option, AI automatically becomes the 2nd or last choice. And that in itself says a lot. Remember I am talking of the passenger who has to pay for the ticket.

Roy, I must disagree with you on this one. There are, in fact, a lot of passengers - I'm one myself - who do pick AI over all other carriers. Whatever their reasons are, I'm sure AI's usually brilliant service has a lot to do with it. Sure the cabin might look like a geriatric ward at times with the near-expiration old dears working, but they do a great job.

I must add though, that this preference for AI, in my experience, is for the European and American routes only. Regional flying on AI is a nightmare at best, what with the frequent and bizarre stops along the way. I still maintain going from Bombay to Singapore via Delhi is seriously effed up and whoever's responsible for routing at AI needs to put their crack pipe away! No passenger in their right mind would choose to be holed up in a 310 for upto 11 hours (keep the wonderful DEL delays in mind) for a flight that should take at most 5! And then end up arriving at some unearthly hour...

So, whilst I'm certain that a lot of pax do actually choose AI over other carriers for the Westbound routes for actual service reasons, those that end up on AI for regional flying are usually doing so because they either couldn't get anything else, or because they're more comfortable with something familiar, or simply because they couldn't resist the two-for-one dealies and yeilded without a fight!
 
Vimanav
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 5:09 am

It will be some time before CCU can really catch up with the rest of India considering the head start that cities like HYD, BLR, COK and even AMD and CCJ have got. Even though the Commies in the state are beginning to act less like themselves and more like capitalists (remember Chandan Basu - the industrialist son of India's commie number one?), nobody's in a tearing hurry to come back to CCU.

BA does well because of Bengal's historic connection with the Raj and to a great extent the sentimentality of Calcuttans for whom the carrier will forever remain BOAC. CCU is also an important base for a large number of business houses viz. Birlas, Tatas, Goenkas, Mittals and various others. Most of them by design or default opt for BA. A rather strange statistic is that the ratio of premium traffic to back of the bus is highest in CCU for BA than at any of their other gateways in India.

But really speaking with growth rates under 8% Eastern India has a long way to go before airlines consider them for truly long haul services.

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
dulleswatcher
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 5:16 am

Sean, I take your point about reciprocity, but I am beginning to believe it is a crutch used by the governments involved. After all, Emirates has seven dailies to Dubai from LHR, and they have neither a fifty year history nor a wealth of unexploited route authorities. They just depend on the free market. It's a shame that so many Indians use third carriers just to get where they need to because the UK/India bilat is limited so severely. Imagine what aviation free of absurd government inability (on both sides) to reach reasonable accommodations. Here's to the courage one day to sign Open Skies with each other. In fact, I hope the US and India sign Open Skies sooner. best, ak
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jaysit
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 6:50 am

"A rather strange statistic is that the ratio of premium traffic to back of the bus is highest in CCU for BA than at any of their other gateways in India."

Thats interesting.
On every BA flight to Mumbai I've been on in the past 2 years (thats 5 flights now) First and ClubWorld are always full. The last two flights on BA were on 744s with the expanded ClubWorld cabin. As a matter of fact, even WTPlus was full, but WT wasn't. I was very surprised to see how extensively BA tap the premium Indian market.
Atheism is Myth Understood.
 
Thunderbird1
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 12:52 pm

I think AI returning to CCU would get a favorable response. SIA and Thai, for example, have done very well serving CCU from Asia.

The reason that Bengalis favor BA is because they're the only airline that has faithfully served CCU all these years. I think it's pathetic that the national flag carrier (AI) doesn't serve the 2nd largest city in India better. Kolkata Airport is fine (esp the domestic terminal).
 
IndianGuy
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 1:12 pm


No passenger in their right mind would choose to be holed up in a 310 for upto 11 hours (keep the wonderful DEL delays in mind) for a flight that should take at most 5! And then end up arriving at some unearthly hour...

Absolutely! Most people (my folks included) opt for AI mostly becuase they are unaware of the options available. A few years back AI would have been the first choice fo rme as well. But no longer.

After trying out airlines like EK and SQ and the phenomenal inflight product they offer, i wonder why the Indian passenger has to endure the pathetic inflight products offered by AI. Look at EK: a choice of 3 flight options at convenient times (convenient to the passenger not to the crew), superb cabin facilities with PTV's even in eco! As for food service, EK is superb even in this area, though there seem to be some problems with consisitency. Pitch seems a little tight (atleast in the rear of their airbus) but again its not bad. AND u cant beat their fares! My mom, for one, was maha impressed by EK.

I would have an option of trying out SQ next month. Again I could have chosen AI, but why endure an AI flight (on an antique A310 wioth an obsolete inflight product) when SQ goes non-stop in half the time with a much superior product on a 777-300. All this for just S$250 more? So why not? What does AI offer to the pax anymore?

Patriotism is not an option that they can fall back on! After all EK is virtually an Indian airline, considering the number of Indians who work there! On m,y last trip i dont think I interacted with a single non-indian/south asian staff!

-Roy
 
boysteve
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 8:02 pm

Forget about LHR, why don't Air India serve MAN. Afterall, PIA have just added more flights making it 17 per week from MAN to various destinations in Pakistan.
 
Vimanav
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 8:30 pm

The reason that Bengalis favor BA is because they're the only airline that has faithfully served CCU all these years.

BA returned to CCU after a long hiatus in 1993 or 1994. The only international airline to serve CCU faithfully is Thai International. They started CCU in 1960 and still continues to fly there after 44 years.

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
mrniji
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sun Jul 18, 2004 9:10 pm

I would not be surprised if LH enters CCU, maybe in the frame of a MoU with AI, in the next 2-3 years. The entire strategy of LH is fitted for the Indian pax from North America to India
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
Vimanav
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Mon Jul 19, 2004 4:23 am

Mrniji

I doubt LH will ever enter the CCU market. They closed down their offline office in CCU two years ago and has not even deemed it important enough at to have at least a GSA representation in CCU.

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
jasepl
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 4:21 pm

Emirates has seven dailies to Dubai from LHR, and they have neither a fifty year history nor a wealth of unexploited route authorities

Exactly. Lots of airlines, BA included, have been buying slots at LHR when they can't just get them. AI wait and wait and then end up getting more irregular slots, at random times and random days. Like I said before, maybe "they should threaten BA and VS with irregular slots at BOM and DEL? It'll prolly be disastrous but fun anyway to give BA a different slot time each night at each of the airports!" Or suck it up already and buy decent slots, instead of sitting and begging and waiting.


I think it's pathetic that the national flag carrier (AI) doesn't serve the 2nd largest city in India better.

Whats more pathetic is that the pinko-commies don't want to fly the national flag carrier, yet whine. Give AI enough credit... They have tried repeatedly to make a success flying out of the East. If the Bonglo brigade did want to fly AI - which they evidently do not - AI would still be flying. Ahmedabad's a tiny city in comparision to CCU, but they've got what, like 21 weekly departures on AI. CCU has the one. Go figure!


I would not be surprised if LH enters CCU, maybe in the frame of a MoU with AI, in the next 2-3 years. The entire strategy of LH is fitted for the Indian pax from North America to India

To add to that, I think LH's strategy is also to expand in India at the expense of AI. This whole business about Frankfurt being AI's favoured pit-stop doesn't quite wash with me. Just watch LH increase India-Germany service faster than AI can. I get this feeling that there's more to the whole deal than a simple love affair between LH & AI. LH will probably end up getting much more out of it than AI ever will.
And what was the great need to pick Frankfurt anyway? Its certainly not for the O&D traffic. No Indian in their right mind wants to go to Frankfurt. For us, its all about London, Paris and Interlaken. As the Frankfurt pit-stop (and CDG, to an extent) has clearly shown, we don't care where the plane stops as long as it gets us to Jersey or California!
Hell, AI could have picked Olympic as their new lover and ATH as the "gateway of choice"! The airport's better, cheaper and pax wanting to connect to the rest of Europe won't have to backtrack across the continent.
They could also re-jig their relationship with AF and better integrate the two FFPs, They would then have in CDG a better gateway, much more O&D and premium potential. Not too sure if AF will turn out as predatory as others.
 
LXsaab2000
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 5:22 pm

Any possibilities to (re)see AI in Rome? Now there aren't any direct links from the italian capital to India.
It's strange to see that from Rome you can go directly to Islamabad , Karachi , Lahore , Dacca, Colombo (all around India) but there aren't direct flights to this large country as India!
 
mrniji
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 8:50 pm

. LH will probably end up getting much more out of it than AI ever will.

I am not that sure. When AI manages to make AB) (FRA / FRF / EDDF), Germany">FRA a nice hub and maybe join Star Alliance (code-shared feeder flights within Eyurope), it could be a real win-win game

And what was the great need to pick Frankfurt anyway? Its certainly not for the O&D traffic. No Indian in their right mind wants to go to Frankfurt. For us, its all about London, Paris and Interlaken. As the Frankfurt pit-stop (and CDG, to an extent) has clearly shown, we don't care where the plane stops as long as it gets us to Jersey or California!

Don't forget the small, but important Indian community here in FRa (I grew up there). There is a considerable amount of demand, additionally also from Germans etc. I agree that the demand will be exhausted at some point, but with a good strategy, FRa could be a good gateway (especially with alliances - AI-LH). I do not see Paris with a bigger potential as FRa. Let's see..


"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
jasepl
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 9:03 pm

Mrjiji, the Indian community is Germany seems to be spread out all over the place. They can't fly on AI from Munich or Stuttgart or wherever. They're gonna have to connect anyway. May as well connect anywhere. Does it have to be Frankfurt.

In any case, Frankfurt O&D can't conceivably be over 10-12%. I have a feeling CDG can do much better than that.

As for code-shared feeder flights with LH, what's so wonderful about this that another carrier can't do? I mean AI have been working with AF for a long time and manage to serve a number of destinations perfectly well.

LH have happily been increasing frequencies out of India and I think India's now their biggest operation in Asia. I don't think they have as many flights / seats out of any other country east of the Urals than India, with BOM, DEL and MAA now daily and BLR 4-5 / week to Frankfurt and DEL to MUC 3 /week. Does any carrier, other than UL, perhaps SQ and a couple from the Middle East have such capacity from India?

LH will happily snap up the premium pax and leave the students and Gujjubens for AI.
 
B747-437B
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 9:51 pm

Lots of airlines, BA included, have been buying slots at LHR when they can't just get them.

That does not change the fact that transfer of slots at Heathrow for consideration is directly against EU policy and EU law with the exception of a few narrow circumstances. Ironically the Government of India does not allow AI to break the law (in this case), despite the fact that it is common practice for others.

they should threaten BA and VS with irregular slots at BOM and DEL

Both BA and VS have "historical rights" to their current slots at BOM/DEL and hence cannot be displaced from those unless they operate less than 80% of scheduled flights during a designated scheduling period.

I think it's pathetic that the national flag carrier (AI) doesn't serve the 2nd largest city in India better

Get real. Kolkota may be the 2nd largest city in India by population but in terms of an air travel market it is way down the list. In fact, it has now fallen to the #5 position as an air travel hub in India with Bangalore having overtaken it for the first time in 2003. At the current rate, Hyderabad will also overtake it by the end of 2004. For international travel it is even worse. Kolkota falls behind Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Hyderabad, Kozhikode and Bangalore in terms of market size. If and when the market exists, I'm sure Air India will come knocking again but until then its simply throwing good money after bad.

And what was the great need to pick Frankfurt anyway?

There was the need to standardize on a single European gateway of choice to serve as a preferred hub for North American expansion. The three options were London Heathrow (preferred but ruled out due to bilateral and slot constraints), Paris CDG and Frankfurt. What tipped the balance in favor of Frankfurt was that Lufthansa was willing to enter into a far more comprehensive strategic alliance with Air India than Air France was. The AI-LH MoU signed last year not only makes a number of allowances in terms of willingness to trade slots for preferred access but also creates the foundation for agreements vis-a-vis technical services via LH Technik and for a comprehensive joint operation to secondary markets in India. Air France remains a valued partner in terms of the access to European markets it provides AI, but Lufthansa will be the partner of choice for North American markets.

Any possibilities to (re)see AI in Rome?

Very unlikely until a new fleet type is introduced. The sad truth is that the A310 doesn't have the legs to run Rome efficiently enough and the B747 is too large.

In any case, Frankfurt O&D can't conceivably be over 10-12%. I have a feeling CDG can do much better than that.

You would be surprised. Frankfurt consistently pulls in stronger O&D numbers than Paris. Additionally Frankfurt has a much larger demand for cargo service. The only reason that Paris survived the 1999 cutbacks and Frankfurt didnt was the codeshare agreement at the time with Air France. Paris is best served as a transit stop en route to North America as the fifth freedom market there has shown itself very willing to accept (and even develop loyalty to) Air India. To think, back in the early 1980s there was an option to run Montreal via Paris and AI decided to pass in favor of Frankfurt. Ah well...

LH will happily snap up the premium pax and leave the students and Gujjubens for AI.

Which suits Air India fine. In case you haven't noticed, AI's entire business model has been fine tuned to a load-driven model over the last few years. As long as an airline is able to match its relative premium and bulk capacity demands accurately (which AI largely has been able to do thusfar), it is just as viable a business as another which has different relative capacities.

[Edited 2004-07-21 14:52:53]
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
mrniji
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 10:42 pm

Sean, are there any news about possible operations from India(BLR?)-Fra- to SFO or YYZ (or others)? I know that the LAX expansion will take off first, but still hope that a 3rd North American destination will be served via FRa soon.
"The earth provides enough resources for everyone's need, but not for some people's greed." (Gandhi)
 
B747-437B
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 10:50 pm

are there any news about possible operations from India(BLR?)-Fra- to SFO or YYZ

We'll know by the end of August whether flights to YYZ are a go or not. My guess is not, but anything is possible.
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
donder10
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Wed Jul 21, 2004 10:54 pm

Exactly. Lots of airlines, BA included, have been buying slots at LHR when they can't just get them. AI wait and wait and then end up getting more irregular slots, at random times and random days. Like I said before, maybe "they should threaten BA and VS with irregular slots at BOM and DEL? It'll prolly be disastrous but fun anyway to give BA a different slot time each night at each of the airports!" Or suck it up already and buy decent slots, instead of sitting and begging and waiting.


AI have more slots at LHR than BA do India.
BA are daily to BOM,DEL then 3 weekly to CCU,2 weekly to Madras making 19 flights a week to India.
AI are daily to JFK(all flights leave and arrive at the same times),3 weekly to ORD and now have 13 flights a week to India.Plus,they have the rights to the 3 weekly VS services too albeit without the slots to operate it currently.Hardly a bad deal for AI.
 
Thunderbird1
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Jun 09, 2004 10:23 am

RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Thu Jul 22, 2004 12:49 am

Get real. Kolkota may be the 2nd largest city in India by population but in terms of an air travel market it is way down the list. In fact, it has now fallen to the #5 position as an air travel hub in India with Bangalore having overtaken it for the first time in 2003. At the current rate, Hyderabad will also overtake it by the end of 2004. For international travel it is even worse. Kolkota falls behind Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, Hyderabad, Kozhikode and Bangalore in terms of market size. If and when the market exists, I'm sure Air India will come knocking again but until then its simply throwing good money after bad.

How are you measuring rankings here? Are you listing actual/projected market size or actual passenger loads at each of these cities? My sense with Kolkata, having flown in and out dozens of times on SQ and Thai, is that there is a legitimately large market there that has been exploited by the Asian carriers, and by BA to a certain extent. Every flight I've ever taken into CCU has been packed. I could be wrong though....

Whats more pathetic is that the pinko-commies don't want to fly the national flag carrier, yet whine. Give AI enough credit... They have tried repeatedly to make a success flying out of the East. If the Bonglo brigade did want to fly AI - which they evidently do not - AI would still be flying. Ahmedabad's a tiny city in comparision to CCU, but they've got what, like 21 weekly departures on AI. CCU has the one. Go figure!

I don't know how much the state government is involved with AI's business decisions. However, remember that Kolkata as a city isn't particularly in favor of the Communists, who have done little to improve metropolitan life...the real power of the Commies lies in the rural areas of Bengal.

Furthermore, Ahmedabad's ascendancy has more to do with the huge expatriate Gujju population in England and North America than anything else. The fact that there are relatively few overseas Bongs (proportionally) no doubt contributes to CCU's stagnation as an international market.




[Edited 2004-07-21 18:12:11]

[Edited 2004-07-21 18:12:53]
 
Vimanav
Posts: 1439
Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2003 4:33 am

RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Thu Jul 22, 2004 1:38 am

How are you measuring rankings here? Are you listing actual/projected market size or actual passenger loads at each of these cities? My sense with Kolkata, having flown in and out dozens of times on SQ and Thai, is that there is a legitimately large market there that has been exploited by the Asian carriers, and by BA to a certain extent. Every flight I've ever taken into CCU has been packed. I could be wrong though....

Though I do not know the critiera that Sean has used, its accurate. Just to give you a snapshot view of the month of MAY04

Airport----Acft movements--Passengers
1. BOM----------3351----------491268
2. DEL-----------2906----------343404
3. MAA----------1445----------195169
4. COK-----------736-----------84887
5. TRV-----------558-----------71114
6. HYD-----------536-----------60205
7. CCJ-----------429-----------54066
8. CCU-----------573-----------49950
9. BLR-----------449-----------47014

The data is from the AAI. You can see that CCU is at no. 8 in terms of international passenger movements in India and no. 5 in terms of airplane movements.

Hope this clarifies.

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
Thunderbird1
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Thu Jul 22, 2004 1:49 am

The data is from the AAI. You can see that CCU is at no. 8 in terms of international passenger movements in India and no. 5 in terms of airplane movements.

I guess this may be the question of the chicken vs the egg. If a city is underserved (as I claimed CCU to be, at least by AI), then it naturally will have fewer aircraft movements and passengers!

Having a city served by more carriers also increases competition and reduces fares in general, incentivizing the public to travel more.

I basically agree fully with Sean's earlier remark:

Bengal has improved by leaps and bounds in recent years and I wouldn't be surprised to see Kolkota receive a bit of a belated urban economic boost soon. There is no reason that a city that size with a huge resource of educated people should be wallowing so badly while Bangalore and Hyderabad and other smaller cities race ahead.

I don't know whose fault CCU's stagnation is, but there certainly are lots of reasons why the region should have an economic uplift. It's ripe for growth, and I think AI could help.



[Edited 2004-07-21 18:52:17]
 
Vimanav
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Thu Jul 22, 2004 2:15 am

I don't know whose fault CCU's stagnation is, but there certainly are lots of reasons why the region should have an economic uplift. It's ripe for growth, and I think AI could help.

Now what I have to say on this may cause me to be roasted over a spit. Therefore before I say anything let me clarify that I am a Malayali who spent the first 23 years of my life in CCU besides having worked in the CCU travel market as well. My wife is a Bengali too. Why I create this background is to tell you that the problem with Bengal (very much mirrored in Kerala) are the PEOPLE themselves.

Bengalis in Bengal and Keralites in Kerala are the laziest in the human race. They'd much rather sit around and talk endlessly ("adda baaji") rather than do anything creative. Both types can endlessly argue about the virtues of Marxism and socialism (do we also not have one on the forum Wink/being sarcastic) and almost everything else under the sun rather than move their butts and do something economically creative. I use the word 'economically' because tell the average Bong that and he will create a wonderful painting or write an absolutely marvellous piece of literature and then be too lazy to actually sell his talents!!!

Mallus on the other hand can be downright irritating in their misplaced self righteous pride and eagerness to uphold tradition. How else can you explain the fact that there is a half developed flying school (with airplanes, infrastructure, money everything ready) in a place called Aranmula (between TRV and COK) but the locals refuse to let them start saying that their traditional and predominantly agrarian lifestyle will be destroyed if a flying school comes up there. Dharnas, sit ins, commie lectures everything has been used to try and chase the funding NRIs out with their initiative. Nobody seems to look at the opportunity. Crazy Mallus!!!  Nuts

So its all in the mind man. When the mindset changes, real time economic prosperity will come in as a byproduct (and economic prosperity is not just inward remittances from blue collar Gulf workers but development of indigenous industry).

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
Thunderbird1
Posts: 223
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Thu Jul 22, 2004 2:28 am

Bengalis in Bengal and Keralites in Kerala are the laziest in the human race. They'd much rather sit around and talk endlessly ("adda baaji") rather than do anything creative. Both types can endlessly argue about the virtues of Marxism and socialism (do we also not have one on the forum ) and almost everything else under the sun rather than move their butts and do something economically creative. I use the word 'economically' because tell the average Bong that and he will create a wonderful painting or write an absolutely marvellous piece of literature and then be too lazy to actually sell his talents!!!


Ha ha, I actually agree with this in large part. Bengalis are very intelligent and creative people, but they are pretty lazy and certainly lack a business sense (though this is slowly changing). In any case, I'd like to see an economic boom for the region in the future.
 
B747-437B
Topic Author
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Thu Jul 22, 2004 3:03 am

Though I do not know the critiera that Sean has used, its accurate. The data is from the AAI.

Exactly my source. The AAI May 2004 traffic numbers that were released last week!
"The A340-300 may boast a long range, but the A340 is underpowered" -- Robert Milton, CEO - Air Canada
 
IndianGuy
Posts: 3126
Joined: Fri Jul 07, 2000 3:14 pm

RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Fri Jul 23, 2004 2:15 pm


Bengalis in Bengal and Keralites in Kerala are the laziest in the human race. They'd much rather sit around and talk endlessly ("adda baaji") rather than do anything creative. Both types can endlessly argue about the virtues of Marxism and socialism…

Absolutely Pran! Mallus and Bongs are certainly the laziest of all Indians. No, the Human Race! That’s how they find themselves among the 4 communities with the highest developed personal and social indices: Health, Education, Nutrition and Wealth. Hard Work and intelligence obviously had nothing to do with it! Just what percentage of AI’s pax are Keralites? Anyway, I don’t see how this fits into this particular topic.


How else can you explain the fact that there is a half developed flying school (with airplanes, infrastructure, money everything ready) in a place called Aranmula (between TRV and COK) but the locals refuse to let them start saying that their traditional and predominantly agrarian lifestyle will be destroyed if a flying school comes up there.

Aranmula? Is it the one I saw near Quilon? As far as I know, the opposition was not because of flying activity but because some of the clubs aircraft were used for spraying pesticides and such which caused a lot of health problems.


Get real. Kolkota may be the 2nd largest city in India by population but in terms of an air travel market it is way down the list. In fact, it has now fallen to the #5 position as an air travel hub in India with Bangalore having overtaken it for the first time in 2003.

Well the number of international flights from CCU has been coming down. But has there really been a drop in intl traffic ex-CCU? On my last 9W flight CCU-BOM, quite a few pax I talked to seemed to be transferring to KLM and BA flights ex-BOM. Don’t the European carriers have an agreement with 9W? I think we need to study the number of intl pax out of CCU who have had to connect at BOM, DEL or MAA.

BLR and HYD have the advantage of being marketed aggressively by their state govts, almost to the point of being over-hyped. I just heard a Kerry speech calling for American cities to be “wired like Bangalore”!!! I fell of my bed laughing on that one!! I mean just how hyped can a city be?  Laugh out loud

It would be interesting to study the yields out of BLR and HYD. CCU unfortunately hasn’t had this advantage of being marketed well.

-Roy
 
Vimanav
Posts: 1439
Joined: Thu Jul 31, 2003 4:33 am

RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Fri Jul 23, 2004 2:38 pm

Hard Work and intelligence obviously had nothing to do with it! Just what percentage of AI’s pax are Keralites? Anyway, I don’t see how this fits into this particular topic.

I'm not too clear on this one. I had expressly stated that it is the Bongs in Bengal and the Mallus in Kerala who are the laziest of the human race. Put them outside the state and they perform like wizards. It is therefore the former factor which has contributed to the lack of economic development in their respective states - (by economic I mean industrial development, technological advancement etc.). You cannot put up one business enterprise without somebody or the other creating blockades for you. Two Mallus or two Bongs and you have a Workers Union (in their respective states).

This has been the reason why CCU has not done as well in terms of nternational traffic and hence the relevance of my comments to this topic.

rgds//Vimanav
Sarfaroshi kii tamannaa ab hamaare dil mein hai, Dekhnaa hai zor kitnaa baazu-e-qaatil mein hai
 
RMenon
Posts: 113
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 24, 2004 3:41 am

I had expressly stated that it is the Bongs in Bengal and the Mallus in Kerala who are the laziest of the human race. Put them outside the state and they perform like wizards

Vimanav, I was about to get offended by your earlier post, until I realized that I am actually outside the state! (and the country, so does that make a double wizard?)  Smile/happy/getting dizzy

 
jasepl
Posts: 3499
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RE: Air India To Increase London Service

Sat Jul 24, 2004 3:49 am

I was about to get offended by your earlier post

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