Continental Airlines Announces Earlier Start Date for Nonstop New York-Mumbai Service
HOUSTON, May 9 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Continental Airlines (NYSE
: CAL) today announced it will launch nonstop service between its New York hub at Newark Liberty International Airport and Mumbai, India, earlier than originally planned, following a positive market response to the proposed flights.
Subject to government approval, the service will now begin on October 1, 2007 (eastbound). Continental will initially operate the service four times a week -- departing New York Liberty on Sundays, Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays -- with the frequency increasing to daily service effective October 28, 2007, subject to government approval. In its original announcement in March this year, Continental planned to launch daily service on the route effective October 30, 2007, subject to government approval.
"We have received strong support for the nonstop New York to Mumbai service and are pleased to be able to move up its start date," said Jim Compton, Continental's executive vice president-marketing. "The new service will link America's financial center with the business and entertainment capital of India, and its most populous city. We are confident the service will be a great success."
Continental's New York Liberty-Mumbai flights will be operated by Boeing 777-200 aircraft. The flight schedule will be as follows, subject to government approval:
Flight CO48, will depart New York Liberty on Sunday and Monday at 7:20 p.m., arriving at Mumbai at 7:40 p.m. the next day; on Friday and Saturday, the same flight will depart New York Liberty at 8:00 p.m., arriving at Mumbai at 8:20 p.m. the following day. The return flight CO49 will depart Mumbai's Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport on Monday, Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday at 11:45 p.m., arriving at New York Liberty at 6:30 a.m. the following day. Flying times will be approximately 14 hours 50 minutes eastbound and 16 hours 15 minutes westbound.
The flight will be timed to provide convenient connections at Continental's New York hub with more than 230 other cities throughout the U.S., Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean.
Continental's India flights feature special products and services for Indian customers. A Bollywood movie channel is featured on the inflight entertainment system, with different programming provided in each direction for all customers to access on their individual seat monitors. Movies are in Hindi with English subtitles (when available from the studio). In addition, movies on other channels are programmed with Hindi subtitles (when available from the studio). Traditional Indian music is incorporated in the world music audio channel. Instructional videos, including the safety and arrival video and pre-recorded announcements, are available in Hindi. Menus are available in English and Hindi. Inflight meals, which include Indian vegetarian and Indian non-vegetarian choices, have been designed by Indian chefs based in the U.S. and in India. No beef is served. Local Indian newspapers are available for BusinessFirst customers.
The new flights will feature Continental's renowned BusinessFirst service, which has won the Best Executive/Business Class award in the OAG Airline of the Year Awards in each of the past five years (2007, 2006, 2005, 2004 and 2003), based on voting by frequent flyers worldwide. BusinessFirst was also voted Best Transatlantic Business Class among U.S. airlines in Conde Nast Traveler magazine's Business Travel Awards 2006 -- for the 9th year running.
Economy class on the Continental 777 is also exceptionally comfortable and spacious, in a 3-3-3 seating configuration with wider-than-usual aisles. Every economy passenger has an individual seatback video screen, as well as an inflight telephone with overwater capability. The aircraft on the Mumbai route also have AC
power outlets available to every passenger, with no need for an adapter in order to operate a PC
or other approved device.
Continental is in the process of installing Audio/Video on Demand in both the BusinessFirst and economy cabins of its Boeing 777 aircraft. The first two 777s with the new system are already in service, with the remaining 18 777s being progressively retrofitted with the system. The entertainment systems on these aircraft allow customers to choose from more than 250 movies, 300 short-subject programs and 150 compact discs, with a jukebox feature to make individual playlists. In addition, this new entertainment system has 25 video games and the interactive Berlitz World Traveler foreign language program.
Mumbai will be the 30th city in Continental's trans-Atlantic route network. Continental has operated a New York-Delhi nonstop service since 2005.
Continental Airlines is the world's fifth largest airline. Continental, together with Continental Express and Continental Connection, has more than 3,100 daily departures throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia, serving 144 domestic and 138 international destinations. More than 400 additional points are served via SkyTeam alliance airlines. With more than 44,000 employees, Continental has hubs serving New York, Houston, Cleveland and Guam, and together with Continental Express, carries approximately 67 million passengers per year. Continental consistently earns awards and critical acclaim for both its operation and its corporate culture. For more company information, visit continental.com.
SOURCE Continental Airlines