• Air India rolls out red carpet for corporates, leisure travellers

    State-run Air India has begun rolling out special facilities for corporate fliers as it turns to this lucrative segment to shore up its sagging bottomline.

    “At Air India, the focus is on fliers now and on improving customer services to attract as many fliers as possible. Our focus is on providing special facilities for corporate fliers, as yields from corporate fliers are the maximum,” a senior executive of Air India said, requesting anonymity.

    According to the executive, the national carrier is offering corporate fliers services like helpdesk at key airports, lounge facility, improved on-time performance and a huge global network that is complemented by the Star Alliance’s global network.

    “We will be launching a lot of new flights to complete our connectivity between two key cities and further increase our connectivity to attract business fliers, who prefer a same day return,” the executive said, adding that company executives fly all year round, helping airlines fill seats even in the non-peak season.

    But it’s not just the corporate fliers who can look forward to more facilities. The executive quoted earlier said, “At the same time, we are also announcing a lot of offers for leisure travellers.” The airline claims a large number of leisure travellers come to them because they offer 25 kg of free luggage in the economy class of domestic flights. All other airlines offer 15 kg of free luggage for domestic class passengers. According to the executive, Air India is set to announce offers for honeymooning couples in a bid to push business class seats.

    The national carrier is also looking at increasing connections between smaller cities through its regional subsidiary — Alliance Air . “We have called a meeting of transport secretaries of all states on Thursday (May 19, 2016) to discuss connectivity within states. We will offer them flights if they provide us viability gap funding for the losses we make,” the executive said. Doug McDermott Jersey

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