First Flights of the New Airbus A350 are Scheduled by Air India
Air India is preparing to commence operations later this month, having taken delivery of its first Airbus A350-900 (VT-JRA) in December. With an inaugural service between Kempegowda International Airport (BLR) in Bengaluru and Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport (BOM) in Mumbai, the brand-new aircraft is expected to start flying with the Indian flag carrier on January 22.
All clear to take off
In order to give the crew time to get acquainted with the aircraft, the aircraft will initially operate on in-demand regional routes from India’s major cities, such as Chennai International Airport (MAA), Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport (DEL), and Hyderabad’s Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (HYD).
Except for the Tuesday-only flights between Delhi and Bengaluru, all flights are scheduled to run up to six times a week. On January 23, the Delhi–Bengali route will start. All new A350 flights can now be booked on the Air India website.
Air India celebrated the first of 20 planned A350s to enter service by releasing a statement to The Hindustan Times. Later this year, the network of aircraft of this type is expected to grow, with at least five more airframes anticipated in Q1 2024.
The A350, which is part of Air India’s modernization efforts under the Tata Group, has a three-class cabin layout with new and updated interior design that can accommodate 316 passengers.
Air India’s A350 fleet will seat 264 passengers in economy class and 24 in premium economy, which has more legroom and upgraded amenities. All seating is supplied by Collins Aerospace. 28 private suites in business class have lie-flat beds, a comparatively opulent feature that isn’t often found in anything other than first-class merchandise.
In addition, Panasonic’s eX3 HD in-flight entertainment system (IFE) and a new color scheme that reflects the airline’s redesigned image have been added to Air India’s A350 cabin.