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ArchGuy1
Topic Author
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Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 3:38 am

Air India's main international hub used to be in Mumbai, but is now in Delhi for about the last 10 years. Routes that remain from Mumbai are to important cities like Singapore, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Dubai, London, and New York City. Does anyone know why the main hub was switched from Mumbai to Delhi.
 
caliboy93
Posts: 249
Joined: Fri Sep 02, 2016 5:28 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:15 am

Delhi is the capital, closer to tourist locations, more centrally located and easier accessible by more population, and increasingly an important business hub rivaling Mumbai.
 
bhxalex
Posts: 202
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:37 am

With Delhi being the capital, and AI owed by the Indian government, that should be self explanatory. .

With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL or something akin to LH at FRA & MUC. As soon as the Indian LCCs get wise with medium-long haul, AI lose their only competitive advantage. The LCCs are dominating domestically and have been expanding aggressively into nearby markets, it's a matter of when, not if, AI collapse.
 
Antarius
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:51 am

bhxalex wrote:
With Delhi being the capital, and AI owed by the Indian government, that should be self explanatory. .

With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL or something akin to LH at FRA & MUC. As soon as the Indian LCCs get wise with medium-long haul, AI lose their only competitive advantage. The LCCs are dominating domestically and have been expanding aggressively into nearby markets, it's a matter of when, not if, AI collapse.


I'm unconvinced that AI has any competitive advantage now, let alone in the future. Their impressive hemorrhaging of money indicates as much.
2020: SFO DFW IAH HOU CLT MEX BIS MIA GUA ORD DTW LGA BOS LHR DUB BFS BHD STN OAK PHL ISP JFK SJC DEN SJU LAS TXL GDL
 
Sokes
Posts: 1311
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:19 am

caliboy93 wrote:
Delhi is the capital, closer to tourist locations, more centrally located and easier accessible by more population, and increasingly an important business hub rivaling Mumbai.

Nagpur would be centrally located. Whether Delhi nor Mumbai is centrally located. Population is irrelevant unless they have purchasing power. I don't know if Delhi or Mumbai has higher purchasing power. I just mean to say one has to argue with the level of discretionary spending, not population.
Flights from Delhi to Europe take one hour less than flights from Mumbai to Europe.
Delhi would be a good hub from Europe to SE Asia or Australia. But I don't know if Air India has it's flights in Delhi organised that way.
In short: I don't know the answer.
Why can't the world be a little bit more autistic?
 
directorguy
Posts: 1402
Joined: Mon Jul 28, 2008 10:58 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:46 am

bhxalex wrote:
With Delhi being the capital, and AI owed by the Indian government, that should be self explanatory. .

With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL or something akin to LH at FRA & MUC. As soon as the Indian LCCs get wise with medium-long haul, AI lose their only competitive advantage. The LCCs are dominating domestically and have been expanding aggressively into nearby markets, it's a matter of when, not if, AI collapse.


Except that until relatively recently, BOM was the main longhaul base. Mumbai was never the capital of India. AI since independence at least has been state owned. So what changed?
 
sibibom
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:55 am

Delhi offered huge growth potential cos the airport could be expanded, Mumbai didn't have that luxury.
 
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LAX772LR
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:16 am

bhxalex wrote:
With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL o

They've had that before, and it didn't work for them. DEL came out the winner.
I myself, suspect a more prosaic motive... ~Thranduil
 
bhxalex
Posts: 202
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:40 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:20 am

directorguy wrote:
bhxalex wrote:
With Delhi being the capital, and AI owed by the Indian government, that should be self explanatory. .

With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL or something akin to LH at FRA & MUC. As soon as the Indian LCCs get wise with medium-long haul, AI lose their only competitive advantage. The LCCs are dominating domestically and have been expanding aggressively into nearby markets, it's a matter of when, not if, AI collapse.


Except that until relatively recently, BOM was the main longhaul base. Mumbai was never the capital of India. AI since independence at least has been state owned. So what changed?


What's your theory then?

AI is being propped up by the Indian government, it would be a huge loss of face for the Indian government to let AI die. Surely by moving their main hub ops to DEL, it allowed the government to funnel in more money into AI in the guise of handing out big contracts to carry political traffic about. Cleverly done without looking like they were desperately throwing money at AI.
 
bhxalex
Posts: 202
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:40 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 9:28 am

LAX772LR wrote:
bhxalex wrote:
With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL o

They've had that before, and it didn't work for them. DEL came out the winner.


Very true, but if it was ran as a business, not as an incompetent government funded mess, then it would have been possible. They've been decimated domestically by the LCCs for the same reason. The Indian market is huge and will keep growing, but AI have at best stood still, certainly with BOM they surrendered far too easily.
 
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Spiderguy252
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 10:53 am

BOM was (and is) bursting at the seams. When AI took on widebodies by the dozen, DEL and T3 offered a natural hub for connecting India to Europe / NA / Australia, while offering connections both domestically and internationally.

Until this year, 9W had some semblance of a 'hub' at BOM but that is history now. It remains to be seen if Vistara or any other player will expand ops out of BOM, but that airport's low ceiling is a problem for anybody. Incidentally, AI has announced NBO from BOM due to start later this year.

India has had one major runway added in the last 15 years and that is at DEL. BLR is only now building a 2nd runway.
Vahroone
 
directorguy
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:05 pm

bhxalex wrote:
directorguy wrote:
bhxalex wrote:
With Delhi being the capital, and AI owed by the Indian government, that should be self explanatory. .

With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL or something akin to LH at FRA & MUC. As soon as the Indian LCCs get wise with medium-long haul, AI lose their only competitive advantage. The LCCs are dominating domestically and have been expanding aggressively into nearby markets, it's a matter of when, not if, AI collapse.


Except that until relatively recently, BOM was the main longhaul base. Mumbai was never the capital of India. AI since independence at least has been state owned. So what changed?


What's your theory then?
.


My theory is that BOM was relatively over served by foreign carriers+ AI+ other Indian airlines. Most airlines flying to India usually chose Bombay/Mumbai as their main entry point.
The opening of a nice new hub in T3 in 2008 optimized for seamless intl/domestic transfers was a game changer, allowing AI to focus on developing DEL as an intl gateway.
 
CaliguyNYC
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:05 pm

AI should stick to DEL. Vistara should buy GO and concentrate on BOM IMHO. That said, is there ever a chance they will move the slums and build a second parallel runway? My understanding of the rules of slum redevelopment, it is not that no one is willing to pay to move the slums (and give them decent pukka housing), it is that the new development must be int he same constituency. How crazy is that rule. Vote bank politics at its worst. I had hoped Modi would do something when he said a few years ago that the slums are a security risk so close to BOM. But I think the BJP won that area, and it all calmed down
 
hohd
Posts: 906
Joined: Sat May 17, 2008 1:03 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:15 pm

They are building a new additional airport near Mumbai, so it will reduce the congestion at least for domestic flights. BOM airport cannot even convince the local politicians (or convince national politicians to pressure the locals) to remove the bill board near the airport which sometimes obstructs take offs especially for long haul flights to US, so trying to move the slums is even more remote.
 
MIAFLLPBIFlyer
Posts: 475
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:25 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 1:24 pm

ArchGuy1 wrote:
Air India's main international hub used to be in Mumbai, but is now in Delhi for about the last 10 years. Routes that remain from Mumbai are to important cities like Singapore, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Dubai, London, and New York City. Does anyone know why the main hub was switched from Mumbai to Delhi.


Opening of T3 allowed AI to co-locate int'l and domestic in the same terminal which could not be done at BOM till recently. That was the single biggest reason in addition to all the macro economic issues everyone else mentioned.
 
CaliguyNYC
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Joined: Tue Sep 27, 2016 7:27 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 2:46 pm

MIAFLLPBIFlyer wrote:
ArchGuy1 wrote:
Air India's main international hub used to be in Mumbai, but is now in Delhi for about the last 10 years. Routes that remain from Mumbai are to important cities like Singapore, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Dubai, London, and New York City. Does anyone know why the main hub was switched from Mumbai to Delhi.


Opening of T3 allowed AI to co-locate int'l and domestic in the same terminal which could not be done at BOM till recently. That was the single biggest reason in addition to all the macro economic issues everyone else mentioned.


I also think DEL was just better suited for AI (hub slot availability or not - AI had quite a portfolio of slots when they scaled back BOM). DEL is where the new waves of VFR is going to. Plus BOM has to compete with so many close by airports which DEL does not have. AI is a VFR airline at its core. BOM has strong VFR (but the core original VFR group has aged and is more settled/affluent). Add to it that BOM is a huge business market, AI just can't couldn't compete. The BOM crowd just expects more and is can afford to pay a bit more for it. That is why you didn't hear complaints outside of AI staff when AI moved their main hub form BOM to DEL. Any other Indian city would have cried bloody murder that AI was scaling back. But not BOM.
 
anshabhi
Posts: 2252
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Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Thu Aug 01, 2019 3:45 pm

Shiv Sena supported strikes were rampant in mumbai. Shifting to Delhi was entirely due to Union issues
 
Harshil9
Posts: 50
Joined: Tue May 27, 2014 8:19 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sat Aug 03, 2019 5:41 pm

I think the other reason AI focused on Delhi was due to 9W focusing on Mumbai as a hub. For example, 9W focused on Mumbai to London and had triple daily flights on the route compared to just a single daily flight between Delhi and London. Obviously now Jet is no more AI should take advantage and focus on building a second hub in Mumbai.
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 5664
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sat Aug 03, 2019 5:53 pm

Haven’t been to BOM in a few years but I can’t imagine running banks of hub turns through that constrained airport. One runway operation is tough and delays monumental
 
edealinfo
Posts: 2677
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:11 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:52 pm

bhxalex wrote:
With Delhi being the capital, and AI owed by the Indian government, that should be self explanatory. .

With a bit of thought and initiative (something AI has never had) they should have had a hub in BOM to rival DEL or something akin to LH at FRA & MUC. As soon as the Indian LCCs get wise with medium-long haul, AI lose their only competitive advantage. The LCCs are dominating domestically and have been expanding aggressively into nearby markets, it's a matter of when, not if, AI collapse.


Air India’s competitive advantage (against Indian carriers) are the slots they possess both domestically and internationally. no more , no less. Whether the value of those slots outweigh the negative value of all the other things associated with Air India, is a different matter.

separately, caliguy, note that the owner of Go Airways and Rata Tata have recent bad blood between them. I mean real bad blood. I suspect that because of this Ratan Tata wouldn’t allow a GO deal with Vistara. business should be just business but not on this one as the animosity runs deep. as an FYI, Nusli Wadia of Go, who was also on the TATA aboard, sided with Mistry in Mistry’s boardroom battle with Ratan Tata.
 
edealinfo
Posts: 2677
Joined: Mon Jan 21, 2019 7:11 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sat Aug 03, 2019 6:56 pm

Harshil9 wrote:
Obviously now Jet is no more AI should take advantage and focus on building a second hub in Mumbai.

What’s probably not OBVIOUS to you, and probably should, is that there are no more commercially viable slots available at Bombay. so with no slots, how do you except them to focus on building a second hub?
 
global2
Posts: 517
Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2014 1:50 am

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sat Aug 03, 2019 10:58 pm

I doubt BOM can be an efficient hub in its current configuration, even with the new terminal.
 
vadodara
Posts: 1146
Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2017 7:45 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sun Aug 04, 2019 12:42 am

ArchGuy1 wrote:
Air India's main international hub used to be in Mumbai, but is now in Delhi for about the last 10 years. Routes that remain from Mumbai are to important cities like Singapore, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Dubai, London, and New York City. Does anyone know why the main hub was switched from Mumbai to Delhi.


Theft
 
JOYA380B747
Posts: 794
Joined: Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:31 pm

Re: Air India Mumbai Hub

Sun Aug 04, 2019 1:58 am

If that's the case, then Moving AI from BOM to DEL was the best politically motivated decision this (or any other) govt could have ever taken in aviation.

If 'politics' can tie down the hands of any state government from clearing out illegal settlements for the purpose of expanding the airport of the business hub of the country since decades, 'politics' might as well move & expand aviation business hub (in this case AI) elsewhere.
India's biggest loss w.r.t global aviation (so far) - Being an Australasia-Europe stopover.

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